September 1, 2023
Dear Parents, Guardians, Caregivers, and Students,
We are delighted to welcome you back to school at the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) and hope that everyone had a restful, joy-filled summer. We are beginning the school year feeling renewed and excited for what’s to come in 2023-24 and staff are looking forward to welcoming students and families with enthusiasm on September 5.
During this transitional time and all year long, TDSB students will be well supported by caring and professional educators and staff within our schools and buildings. There are also numerous resources and important information available online to help prepare students and answer all your questions.
Below, in our first issue of TDSB Connects for the 2023-24 school year, please find links to some of the most relevant and timely information. Please remember that you can also always reach out directly to your child’s teacher with questions or to discuss your child’s needs. It is our goal to ensure that all students have access to what they need to achieve academic success and to support their mental health and well-being.
All the best for a great year ahead!
Yours in partnership,
Rachel Chernos Lin Colleen Russell-Rawlins
Chair of the Board Director of Education
Welcome to TDSB Connects, an update on news and events from across the Toronto District School Board (TDSB).
Celebrating Good News - Read about some of the recent events, initiatives and great things happening across the Toronto District School Board, including:
2023-24 School Year Calendar - Looking forward to the first day of school on Tuesday, September 5, 2023! Visit the School Year Calendar for a list of other important dates.
Phased-in Start for Student Transportation - The Toronto Student Transportation Group will once again be implementing a phased-in start for student transportation to provide a more consistent service for families and to ensure that students with special education needs are prioritized and receive bus service beginning the first week of school. Find out your child’s student transportation start date and learn more about our plans to address any issues with driver availability. All parents/guardians/caregivers with children who take the bus to school are encouraged to sign up for the Student Transportation Parent Portal to access important information and updates.
Back to School on the TTC - The TTC is an easy and affordable way for TDSB staff and students to travel to and from school and in the fall, TTC increases service to elementary and secondary schools across the city. Learn about planning your trip, safety tips and more!
Ventilation in Schools - The TDSB has focused on several areas to improve ventilation in schools and keep students and staff healthy. Learn more about the ventilation measures underway for the 2023-24 school year.
Managing Heat in Schools and Classrooms - In September, we sometimes still experience very warm days. Learn more about how schools and staff take action to manage the heat and keep the temperature in classrooms as comfortable as possible.
National Day for Truth & Reconciliation & Orange Shirt Day 2023 - Saturday, September 30 marks the 10th anniversary of Orange Shirt Day and the third annual National Day for Truth & Reconciliation. The TDSB will be honouring this day, on Friday September 29. Truth and Reconciliation Week will take place September 25-30. Visit the Urban Indigenous Education website for more information about events happening across the TDSB.
Communicating With Your School - Supporting the health and well-being of both our students and staff is a priority at the TDSB. Maintaining open, responsive lines of communication with families is important and connecting with staff should be done during the regular work hours of Monday to Friday. This means that while families can always send emails after hours, staff will respond during their normal work hours and are not required to respond after hours. However, student safety remains a priority and if there is an emergency after hours, staff will be available as needed. Should families have any questions, connect directly with the school’s principal.
TDSB Backpacks & School Supplies Drive - Backpacks and school supplies can be expensive and represent a difficult purchase for some students and families. Our Backpack & School Supplies Drive will continue to accept donations until the end of September. If interested in supporting, please complete an online donation form. For more information, contact BusinessDevelopment@tdsb.on.ca.
Mark Your Calendar: Parents and Caregivers as Partners Conference - Join us for the Parents and Caregivers as Partners Conference on October 21 and 22, 2023. This year’s conference is focussed on Joy in the Journey of Learning and will be a weekend full of learning and connection. Attendees can participate virtually and also join in-person presentations. Visit www.parentsaspartners.ca for more information.
Join TDSB’s Equity Policy Community Advisory Committee (EPCAC) - The TDSB’s Equity Policy Community Advisory Committee (EPCAC) invites parents and community members to join and help the committee in providing advice to the TDSB on matters concerning the implementation of the Equity Policy. The deadline to apply is September 18, 2023. Learn more about the committee, including membership criteria.
Multi-Year Strategic Plan (MYSP) Renewal - We want to hear from you! Please complete the MYSP online survey and share your thoughts about what the TDSB’s priorities should be for 2023-2027. Learn more about how to contribute at www.tdsb.on.ca/MYSPrenewal.
Continuing Education Programming - Explore learning opportunities available for children, families, adults and visitors at the TDSB this fall:
Community Services in-class programs are back in full swing!
- Essential Skills Upgrading classes and workshops are for adults seeking to improve their writing, reading, math and computer skills to prepare them for further education, new jobs, and more opportunities. We’re open for sign-up!
- Enhanced Language Training are starting new program sessions for newcomer professionals with a background in Health and Wellness on September 5 and in Information Technology (IT) on September 18.
Our Welcoming Communities program is resuming operations within TDSB schools to support newcomer students as they settle into their new communities. School staff and teachers can contact our program about bringing Welcoming Communities to their schools.