School Handbook

WELCOME! The staff of Gilbert Paterson Middle School (GPMS) extends a warm welcome to you.  We hope this year is a pleasant one, filled with new experiences and friendships. Our hope is you get the most out of our school academically, physically and socially. We encourage you to get involved in the wide range of activities. Our handbook is designed to help you understand the operation, procedures and programs at Paterson.  Please contact the school if you have any comments, questions or concerns. Phone: (403) 329-0125. 

TIGER PRIDE - Notre Mascotte
GPMS is "Tiger Territory''.  We believe all our students are “TIGERS”; we want all of our students to feel part of our school community. We include our grade five “Tiger Cubs” as part of our school community. Our mascot "Snag", the tiger, is a proud, intelligent animal with a good sense of humour! Our school colours are gold and black and our school motto is "Conquer Thyself, Conquer the World". Watch for information on how to order “Tiger Gear” to show off your Tiger Pride! 

OUR MIDDLE SCHOOL VISION- Notre vision de lècole intermediareLethbridge School District #51 Middle School students are ethical citizens and engaged learners who possess global competencies.  

OUR MIDDLE SCHOOL MISSION STATEMENT- Notre missionLethbridge School District #51 Middle Schools are developmentally responsive communities that are connected and relational.  

GILBERT PATERSON MIDDLE SCHOOL CORE VALUES- Nos valeurs principalesCreativity, compassion, belonging, collaboration, integrity, excellence, advocacy, resiliency, engagement, leadership, responsibility, spirit 

SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY - Philosophie de l'école
"Gilbert Paterson Middle School provides a learning experience that promotes the development of academic, social and emotional, physical, and artistic attributes unique to early adolescence.  We are committed to a secure, positive, challenging and exploratory approach in cooperation with parents and community." We believe:All students are capable of learning.All students and staff have the right to learn and work in a safe, nurturing environment that supports their individual strengths and needs.Our students and staff will recognize and appreciate the similarities as well as respect the differences among individuals and cultures.The school promotes academic excellence by meeting the goals and objectives prescribed by Alberta Education.Our school must foster the desire for life-long learning.Our students must have the opportunity to participate in physical activities and to explore the practical and fine arts.The integration of technology is valuable for teachers and learners.Parents, students, staff and community are all stakeholders in education and must be mutually supportive in order to ensure a satisfying, productive and affirming school environment.Students must take ultimate responsibility for their behavior. Stakeholders must work together to support appropriate social behavior and to foster independent decision-making, problem-solving and responsible self-discipline.School staff should have the opportunity for collaborative decision-making and professional development. 

THE SCHOOL - L' école
Gilbert Paterson Middle School was built in 1955 and serves a population of approximately 650 students. GPMS is a grade six to grade eight school and is unique in a number of ways;GPMS is a dual track school; we offer English and French Immersion classes at each grade level. GPMS offers a Grade 7/8 Knowledge and Employability class and a Grade 6/7/8Learning Support class. Grade Six and Seven classes consist of two dyads and one homeroom classroom.Grade Eight classes consist of 2 dyads and one quad grouping. GPMS owns its own bus.  The bus is used extensively for a variety of activities for all grade levels. 

THE STUDENT - L'étudiant
All GPMS students are under the jurisdiction of the Alberta Government. The School Act governs schools in the province.  In accordance with the School Act a student shall conduct him/herself so as to reasonably comply with the following code of conduct:be diligent in pursuing his/her studiesattend school regularly and punctuallyco-operate fully with everyone authorized by the Board to provide education programs and other servicescomply with the rules of the schoolaccount to his/her teachers for their conductrespect the rights of others

STUDENT EXPECTATIONS AND BEHAVIOUR – Les attentes et le comportementGilbert Paterson Middle School operates on the philosophy that all students have the right to learn in a safe and productive learning environment, without the disruptive behavior of any student. 

  • Home and school share the responsibility for teaching appropriate, acceptable behavior.  By working together, we can ensure positive student conduct. Discipline is essential in building accountability, responsibility and respect for others.
  • Students must understand they are responsible for their own behavior.  Students must recognize disruptive and distractive behavior is unacceptable.   Any behavior that encroaches upon the rights of others is unacceptable. Students are expected to follow reasonable rules established for the benefit of all students and the community. During school hours, conduct should be governed accordingly.
  • The staff at GPMS adopted a school-wide discipline program, based on the above philosophy.    This program is based on a set of expectations and consequences both in the classrooms and school-wide.

 A.   SCHOOL-WIDE BEHAVIOUR EXPECTATIONS GPMS students should behave in a reasonable, responsible and positive way and understand the following expectations: Demonstrate consideration, courtesy and respect to others and their property. Walk in an orderly, quiet and safe manner while in the school and during all school related activities.  Common sense and safety are our guidelines.Avoid the use of profane language and inappropriate gestures while participating in school activities on or off campus, or in the immediate vicinity of the school’s property.  Cigarettes and other prohibited substances will be confiscated from students who choose to bring them on the school property and the school resource officer will be informed.Use school equipment appropriately and avoid activities that will harm or potentially endanger oneself or others.Arrive at school no earlier than 7:50 am and to leave the school property within 15 minutes after the dismissal unless involved in a staff supervised activity.Treat all school property with care and respect.Behave in law-abiding ways.  Adhere to our GPMS Dress Code GuidelinesAdhere to our LSD#51 Acceptable Use of Computers & Technology  

B.  CLASSROOM EXPECTATIONSClassroom expectations incorporate elements of our school philosophy.  These are discussed with students in every classroom.  The rules include the following concepts:

  • Students are to be polite to other students and the staff.
  • Students are to go to class prepared to work.
  • Students are to hand in assignments on time except under exceptional circumstances.
  • Students are to respect the school’s property and the property of their classmates.
  • Students are to follow all other “school rules” as adopted by the staff or individual teacher.

C.  FAIR NOTICE OF RISK ASSESSMENTOur School District believes in creating safe and caring environments for students and staff.  Any incident where a student engages in behavior which threatens or appears to threaten the safety of themselves or others will be investigated.  Administrators can implement a Risk Assessment for behaviors that are worrisome including writing or drawings with violent themes; references to or involvement in violent activity at school; or an increased interest in activities that are deemed as dangerous to the safety of themselves or others.  The Threat Assessment is implemented when a student threatens to kill or injure others, brings a weapon to school, or makes direct verbal or written violent threats to others.  The Threat/Risk Assessment regulations are outline in Policy 504.9 available in the School District Policy Handbook available at www.lethsd.ab.ca

ATTENDANCE AND ABSENCES - Présences et absences
Regular attendance is the responsibility of the student and parent. Students are expected to be punctual for school every day, unless they are ill, celebrating a religious holiday, or are absent for some other unavoidable cause. Students are responsible for learning concepts and completing assignments when they are absent. Class assignments are posted on the GPMS website. Due to the the nature of differentiated and collaborative instruction, teachers are not always able to provide homework packages for students.  If the student becomes ill during the school day, the student should seek permission from the classroom teacher to report to the office. Poor attendance has a direct, negative effect on achievement.  Regular attendance is required, by law, until the age of 16. A student may be referred to alternative programming if the student has poor attendance. 

CONTACTING YOUR ADOLESCENT AT SCHOOL- le contact de votre etudiant pendant les heures scolaries
In order to deliver the message that obtaining education is valuable, we ask that you not call or text your child during instructional hours. Contacting your adolescent not only interferes with their learning, but potentially the learning of other students. If a phone call or text message is necessary, please understand we are teaching digital etiquette and will ask students to check their voice mails and text messages at appropriate times. 

LATES - RetardsStudents are expected to be punctual for all their classes. Students arriving late, after the 8:10 am bell, must report to the main office for a late slip, otherwise they are marked absent and an automated phone call home may result. It is the student’s responsibility to catch up on missed work.

LEAVING SCHOOL GROUNDS BEFORE DISMISSAL - Départ sans permissionUnder no condition is a student to leave the school during school hours without the approval of his/her parent/guardian and office staff.  Leaving the grounds without permission is considered truancy. If a student leaves early, a parent or guardian must notify the school. The student must sign out at the office. 

STUDENT HEALTH -  SantéIf a student is sick, he/ she should report to the office. In less serious cases, the student may remain in the office. If the illness is more serious, the office will contact a parent/guardian. School Board Policy prohibits the school from sending a student home unless a parent or guardian is notified. If contact with parents/guardians cannot be made, students will be kept at the school. School Board policy also prohibits schools from administering medication of any sort to students unless special circumstances prevail. (See Medication information below) If hospital treatment is necessary and if parents/ guardians cannot be contacted, the student will be transported to the hospital. The hospital then assumes the responsibility to contact the parents/ guardians for treatment permission.

MEDICATION- MedicationAll medication needing to be administered by staff to students must be stored in the office in the original container. For on-going medication support, a Medication/Personal Care Request Authorization (form 504.1.3.1) must completed including physician’s signature. Medication/Personal Care Request Authorization (form 504.1.3.1) can be found at www.lethsd.ab.ca or are available at the office.

DRESS CODE GUIDELINES – Guide de la tenue vestimentaire
Good social judgment includes knowing what is appropriate to wear based upon the situation. Gilbert Paterson Middle School dress code is modeled on what is appropriate to wear in the future workplace.  Students’ dress should be clean, neat and modest. When a staff member identifies a student who may be inappropriately dressed or groomed, the student will be reminded of the Dress Code Guidelines. If the dress code is not being followed the student may be directed to counseling to discuss changes that might be required so the student may return to class. If clothing is inappropriate, the student may be asked to cover with a shirt or jacket. Repeat offenses may result in the student being sent home to change or the offence may be considered non-compliance. These guidelines apply to all school activities including extracurricular activities and physical education classes. The final determination about the appropriateness of student dress lies with school staff. Students are encouraged to dress in accordance with the following Dress Code Guidelines:

  • Clothing designated as underwear must be kept unseen and undercover
  • Clothing must cover midriff and cleavage
  • Spaghetti straps, if worn with a cover-up, are acceptable
  • Tank tops, with shoulders wide enough to cover bra straps, are acceptable
  • Shorts and skirts must be a modest length; mid-thigh is acceptable
  • Appropriate non-scuffing shoes are encouraged in all areas of the school
  • Shoes with high heels are discouraged for safety reasons
  • Slogans on clothing are positive and appropriate for the school setting
  • No hats or hoods in the school; head covers may be worn for medical or religious reasons


NOON HOUR- LUNCH FACILITIES - Dîner à  l'école - CommoditésGilbert Paterson Middle School a closed-campus policy, students are expected to remain on school property during the lunch hour and eat in designated lunch areas; this ensures adequate supervision and safety for our students. Students may go home for lunch, providing parents sign a contract with the school. Students misbehaving during the noon hour will not be permitted to stay for lunch. Parents will be contacted in these cases and alternative arrangements must be made. (see also Intramurals)

TIGERS’ DEN CONCESSION - Cantine 
Our Tigers’ Den offers a variety of healthy alternatives for purchase over the noon hour.  Hot lunch program is provided for purchase on Tuesday and Wednesdays. These times are subject to change. Please see our website for updated times and menu items. 

 ACCEPTABLE USE OF COMPUTERS & TECHNOLOGYL’utilisation appropriée des ordinateurs et de l’équipement technologiqueLethbridge School District No.51 strongly believes in the value of educational technology. These technologies include but are not limited to computers, software, Internet access, email, telephones, course management systems, etc. Their potential is in promoting educational excellence by facilitating sharing of resources, access to information, innovation, global communication and collaboration. Extending education beyond the classroom enhances the ability of teachers and students to meet the challenges of the future. Access to Electronic Communication Lethbridge School District No.51 believes that electronic communication is a tool for life-long learning, and that access to technology is one of the resources that promote educational and organizational excellence. We believe the responsible use of technology will propel today's schools into the information age allowing students and staff to significantly expand their knowledge by accessing and using information resources, and by analyzing and publishing information. We firmly believe that the valuable information and interaction available through the use of technology far outweighs the possibility that users may procure material that is not consistent with educational goals.  

Use of Internet Internet access is made available to further the educational goals and objectives of the district and Alberta Learning. Lethbridge School District No. 51 believes that the benefits of the availability of the Internet to students and staff, in the form of information resources and opportunities for collaboration, far exceed any disadvantages. It should be understood that the Internet provides access to computers, people and information from all over the world. However, the information is neither verified, edited nor regulated and, as such, materials may be available that may be illegal, inappropriate, or lacking in educational value. The District has taken steps to limit access to inappropriate content on the Internet. Nevertheless, on a global network, it is impossible to control all materials that a user may access. Thus, it should be understood, that some of this content may still be accessible. The district continues to educate teachers and students about how to safely and responsibly use the Internet. To further reduce the chance of students accessing inappropriate material on the Internet, the school district has chosen to implement Internet filters from Grades Kindergarten to Twelve. It is recognized that Internet filtering is only one component of many that need to be followed to ensure student safety while accessing the Internet. Use of Electronic Communication Students and staff are expected to demonstrate the same kind of responsible behaviour while communicating in an electronic learning environment, as would be expected in any district environment. Communications in the electronic medium are frequently public in nature, and, therefore, district and school policies for behaviour and communication will apply. Be aware that electronic communication, such as e-mail, is not guaranteed to be private. Acceptable use includes but is not limited to:

  • Using district electronic communication for educational reasons
  • Being polite
  • Using appropriate language. Refraining from swearing, the use vulgarities, or any other inappropriate language.
  • Refraining from illegal activities. Such activities are strictly forbidden and will be reported to the appropriate authority
  • Refraining from the release of personal information (address, phone number or other information) that may allow you or others to be identified.

Our expectation is our students will become educated and responsible digital citizens. There are no expectations that a student must have their own mobile device; students have access to the school’s technologies. With the ability to bring a personal device comes a new level of responsibility. Our students’ safety in an online environment is of utmost importance to us and learning to be a responsible digital citizen will increase and awareness of the power of the Internet but will enhance their learning opportunities.  The use of personal devices in our school will be at the discretion of our staff members.  

DIGITAL ETIQUETTE- Lètiquette des portablesCell phones are powerful devices and are the responsibility of the student. Students are encouraged to use any digital device respectfully. We encourage parents/guardians to monitor personal devices. Teachers decide how cell phones/digital devices are to be managed in their individual class, and encourage ongoing digital etiquette.  Continued lack of digital etiquette will be handled as non-compliance, and the consequence is determined on an individualized basis.  Here are examples of positive and appropriate digital etiquette for students in middle school:

  • Cell phones should be turned to silent mode during class time to avoid distracting others. 
  • Texting is NOT appropriate during class. If a student is sick or needs to contact home immediately, to demonstrate courtesy we recommend informing the teacher prior to contacting home.  
  • Cell phones may be used before classes begin, at lunch and after school. We discourage cell phones to be used between classes; we believe being punctual for class is a priority

 Freedom of Information and Privacy Act (FOIP) Students are not allowed to take pictures, audio or video of any other person, including staff or students, without permission. This is against the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act (FOIP).  For further clarification about technology, please refer to Lethbridge School’s ACCEPTABLE USE OF COMPUTERS & TECHNOLOGY. 

REPORTING PROCEDURES- Les bulletinsReport Cards at GPMS are issued in November, March and June. Report Card dates are determined at the beginning of the school year and are posted on our website calendar. 

STUDENT RECOGNITION- Reconnaissance étudiantRecognition assemblies will be held for each grade level following each reporting period. In addition, students and citizens will be recognized throughout the year. Year-end awards will be presented based on criteria established by the GPMS school awards committee. Academic Excellence Awards at GPMS are marks over 85% in core subjects.

HOMEWORK- DevoirsHomework/study is an integral part of Middle School. Class assignments are posted on gp.lethsd.ab.ca. We encourage students and parents to consistently check the website to ensure assignments are completed on time. Most assignments should be completed within the school day; however incomplete work should be finished for homework.   

STUDENT ASSESSMENT REPORTING- Evaluation Globale de l’apprentissant

ACHIEVEMENT – the scale for achievement is as follows: 90 - 100%      Excellent achievement of grade level learner outcomes.75 - 89%        Approaching excellent achievement of grade level learner outcomes60 – 74%       Acceptable achievement of grade level learner outcomes40 – 59%       Approaching acceptable achievement of grade level learn outcomes– 39%         Not meeting grade level learner outcomes
 EFFORT GRADESE- ExcellentS- SatisfactoryD- DevelopingU- Unsatisfactory 

CHARACTERISTICS OF SUCCESSFUL LEARNINGComments will focus on the following:

  • Assignment Completion- completes assignments on time
  • Attendance- Attends school regularly and punctually
  • Respect- Demonstrates appropriate behavior in his/her interactions with others 
  • Work Ethic- Is prepared and diligent in pursuing their school work. Is working toward reaching their potential
  • *IPP- Program with Accommodations (student is working on grade level outcomes with accommodations) Percentage
  • *IPP- Program with Modifications (student is not working on grade level outcomes) No percentage.
  • *ESL- Student is working on grade level outcomes with ESL accommodations. Percentage.
  • *ESL- Student is not working on grade level outcomes. No percentage. Please see ESL benchmarks. PROGRAMS AND COURSE CHANGES- Programmes et changements de cours
  • All students are required to take the following academic programs: Mathematics, Language Arts, Science, Social Studies, Health and Physical Education. In addition, option courses are offered at each grade level. Option course choices should be made carefully. Generally, students are expected to remain in the classes chosen. Changes will be considered in extenuating circumstances, only after the parent or guardian requests a change (in writing) providing reasons for the change. Following receipt of requests, grade level teachers and administrators will consider and rule on these requests.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION - Éducation physiqueAll students are required to take Physical Education. This program requires that students dress in gym strip and participate in every scheduled class. The following regulations must be followed:

  • All students are to wear shorts (no cut-offs), a t-shirt, sweat socks and non-marking shoes.         
  • The student's name is to be written on all components of the gym strip.
  • Gym clothing should be taken home and laundered, at least once a week.

A note from a parent or guardian must be shown to the teachers during roll call if the student is to be excused from participation in PE class.  If this situation is to be more than three days, a clearance from a medical doctor will be required. Change rooms are provided for both boys and girls. These rooms are kept locked while classes are in progress, but due to the large numbers of students using them, security can be a problem. Students should not leave money or items of value in the change room. These articles should be given to the gym teacher for safekeeping. The school cannot be held responsible for articles lost or stolen from the change rooms.

INTRAMURALS- IntramuralsStudents have the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of noon-hour intramural activities. Students are asked to sign up on the teams. There are also individual activities for those who prefer to compete on their own. Listen to announcements for more information regarding upcoming intramural activities. 

ATHLETCS PROGRAM- Programme sportif
Here at Gilbert Paterson we embrace, “Athletics for All” philosophy.  We believe being part of team is important to the development of the early adolescent.  The way we accomplish that is by offering levelled teams and clubs based on the abilities of our students. In addition to these programs, we offer intramurals at lunch and students will get experience in the below sports through their Physical Education classes.  Our school is a member of the Lethbridge Schools Athletic Association (LSAA).  We offer 5 sports at Gilbert Paterson Middle School:

  • Cross-Country
  • Volleyball
  • Basketball
  • Badminton
  • Track & Field

Here is a breakdown of our program by sport:

Cross-Country – All students participate in running through Physical Education classes.  From our classes we select a group of students based on age and gender to represent Gilbert Paterson at the LSAA Cross-Country Meet.

Volleyball – All students participate in the sport of volleyball through Physical Education classes.  Tryouts are held for our volleyball teams.  
For each gender we offer the following teams:Junior – focus is on developing skills Development – focus is on developing skills and basic strategy.  This team will play exhibition matches against other schools.Rep – focus is on developing skills and more complex strategies.  This team participates in the LSAA League structure.

Basketball - All students participate in the sport of basketball through Physical Education classes.  Tryouts are held for our basketball teams.  For each gender we offer the following teams:Junior – focus is on developing skills Development – focus is on developing skills and basic strategy.  This team will play exhibition matches against other schools.Rep – focus is on developing skills and more complex strategies.  This team participates in the LSAA League structure.

Badminton – All students participate in the sport of badminton through Physical Education classes.  Tryouts are held for our badminton teams.  We offer a badminton team that consists of 8 players only, as outlined by LSAA Badminton Policy, for each grade level and gender.  Due to the fact that we are limited by the number of students who play on a badminton team we also offer a badminton club for all students wanting to participate in badminton after school.Grade 6 girlsGrade 6 boysGrade 7 girlsGrade 7 boysGrade 8 girlsGrade 8 boys

Track and Field – All students participate in Track and Field through Physical Education classes.  We select students through Physical Education classes to compete in the Gilbert Paterson Track and Field Meet. Further, we select the Track and Field team that will represent Gilbert Paterson at the LSAA Track and Field meet from the results of our School Track and Field meet.  

FINE ARTS PROGRAM- Les arts
A rich history of fine arts and performing arts exists at Gilbert Paterson. We believe The Arts promote creativity and humanity in the learning environment and in life. Participation in The Arts improves self-esteem and fosters positive relationships. The Arts develop innovative thinkers in demand for the 21st century.
There are many ways in which students can become involved in the arts at our school. We offer instrumental music (band), handbells, choir and dramatic arts as well as a visual arts program.

Band 6, 7 and 8:  At Paterson, students have the opportunity to experience instrumental music in a challenging environment.  The band program maintains a high performance standard always.  In the program, the band director strives for musical excellence through an early development of the love of the art of music making.Band 6 - Students will have the opportunity near the end of grade 5 to try out the various wind instruments that are in the concert band program at Paterson.  The instrument they receive is based on their top three instrument choices they provide the band director.There is no previous musical experience required to join Band 6.  At home practice and in school rehearsals assist in a positive musical experience.
 Band 7 and 8 - Band 6 is required to join Band 7 and Band 7 is required to join Band 8.  In Band 7 and 8 we participate in a retreat (number of days varies by grade level), concerts throughout the school year, the Kiwanis Music Festival and school assemblies.  At home practice and in school rehearsals assist in a positive musical experience.
 Choir 6, 7, 8
Our department has a strong tradition of fine choral music in Lethbridge and within the province. We strive for an overall perception of the performer, the listener, the evaluator and the composer while developing musical skills and knowledge. Choral music allows one to express his/her inner self. Blend, harmony, intonation, vowel formation and theory are some of the skills students will develop through the year. Sharing music with others will be accomplished through performances held in our local community and in the province.

DANCES- Dances
Students are offered between 2-3 dances per year. Dances are scheduled for afternoons only from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. Dances are open to GPMS students only.

GRADE EIGHT FAREWELL- Adieu des 8ièmesEach June, a year-end festivity is planned for all Grade eight students. This activity will be held at a location determined by the school. There may be a cost to cover expenses. The event is restricted to grade eight students and their parents.

FRENCH IMMERSION- Immersion françaiseStudents in French Immersion will receive instruction in Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies and Physical Education/Health in the French language. Students will be enrolled in English classes for Language Arts and two option courses.

LOST AND FOUND - Objets perdus et trouvés
All lost articles are placed in the Lost and Found bin located across from the choir room. Students should check these containers as well as contact the office for all lost articles.

TELEPHONES - TéléphonesIn the case of an emergency during the school day, students may use the classroom phone or report to the office and have a secretary assist him/her in making a call.  

LOCKS AND LOCKERS - Cadenas et casiersEach student will be assigned a hall locker. The lockers will be used to store books, supplies, coats and gym equipment. Each locker will require a combination lock that will be provided by the office. If locks are lost, a $5.00 replacement fee will be charged to the student. Students should keep their locker combinations confidential, and should not leave sums of money or valuables in the lockers. The school cannot be held responsible for articles lost or missing from lockers.Please Note:   The administration reserves the right to enter lockers if there is a suspicion that lockers are being used for purposes other than storage of school supplies and personal clothing. The lockers and locks remain the property of the school.

SAIC (STUDENT ACADEMIC INTERVENTION CENTRE) - Centre d' intervention académique pour l’étudiantStudents may be referred by the homeroom teacher, in collaboration with the consultative team, to receive help through a unique program called SAIC.  The SAIC is a flexible learning commons area designed to support students who need more targeted or specialized supports, accommodations or program modifications. SAIC is dependent on funding, and is reviewed on an annual basis. 

LIBRARY & LEARNING COMMONS - Bibliothèque & lieu d`apprentissageOur students are fortunate to have a large library and learning commons area.  Materials, other than books, can be signed out for one period. Books are loaned for one week at a time.  Parents are asked to supervise the use of the books at home and to encourage their child to return the books on time.  Students will be charged to replace lost books. 

TEXTBOOKS- Manuels scolairesStudent textbooks will be assigned to students at the beginning of the school year. It is the student’s responsibility to maintain the books in good condition. If books are damaged, lost or stolen the student and parent/guardian are responsible for replacement cost of the books. The school cannot afford to absorb the cost of lost books so all families will have to find a way to pay for lost or damaged books. 

COUNSELLING - ConseillersA teacher counselor, Child and Youth Care Worker (CYCW) and First Nations Métis and Inuit (FNMI) worker are available to all students. Their primary function is to provide support to those students who may be experiencing difficulties as a result of social, emotional, behavioral and academic problems. Students are encouraged to contact the counselor if they are having academic or personal problems.Parents should also feel free to contact the counselor, Youth Care or First Nations Métis and Inuit Worker with concerns or requests at 403-329-0125. 

A.L.E .R.T. PROGRAM (Assisted Learning Environment Response Team) - Programme A.L.E.R.T .The Chinook Health Region, the Lethbridge Police Service and the Lethbridge School District #51  have created the A.L.E.R.T. (Assisted Learning Environment Response Team) program that has a proactive approach to working with children and their families.The A.L.E.R.T program provides students, parents and support staff with information, instruction and intervention related to the promotion of health and well-being and aims to help students and their families to choose and practice a healthy, safe lifestyle. A public health nurse and a police officer work together with the students, parents, staff, and community agencies to address health issues.The public health nurse and the police officer can be reached at the school office - 329-0125 or you can contact the nurse at the CHR Health Office - 382-6666 and the police officer at the Police Station - 327-2210.

 

FIRE DRILLS/LOCKDOWNS - Routine de feuFire drill evacuations are practiced at least six times a year to ensure a quick, safe evacuation routine in case of fire. It is most important that students wear proper footwear at all times in order that they may proceed outdoors in any type of weather.  Lockdown drills will be practiced at least twice during the year. 

INCLEMENT WEATHER - Températures extrêmesDuring extreme cold (-20C) or rainy weather, the students will be given the opportunity to stay indoors. Students are urged to arrive close to the school starting time of 8:10 a.m. on days when the weather is poor. Parents are asked to ensure their children come appropriately dressed for the weather (i.e. coats, gloves, boots, hats, etc). The Superintendent will only close schools in case of inclement weather if the school bus transportation system in non-operational. If schools are “closed”, they are considered non-operational for instruction. Communication to the public will state “all schools are closed for the day”.  

SUBSTITUTE TEACHERS - SuppléantsSubstitute teachers are important employees in our school. As with all visitors and staff in our school, we expect students to treat substitute teachers with courtesy and respect.  The responsibilities assigned to substitute teachers are very important to each student's education. We ask that all students assist substitute teachers whenever possible so the best use of class time is made. 

STUDENT ACADEMIC SUCCESS PLAN – ALL GRADE LEVELS PARENT VOLUNTEERS - Parents bénévolesParents are encouraged to become involved in our school. We need parent volunteers for parent council, classroom assistance, track and field events, field trips, outdoor activities, library and co-curricular programming. Please contact your classroom teacher or a member of the Administration team if you wish to get involved. 

SCHOOL COUNCIL - Comité conseil des parentsGilbert Paterson School Council is a partnership of administration, teacher reps, parents and community who meet once a month to discuss issues, concerns and topics of interest acting within the framework of their bylaws.  Research clearly shows that if parents are actively involved in children’s learning, children will be more successful at school.  The school council vision is that a collective association of parents, teachers, principals, staff and community work together to promote the well-being and effectiveness of all in the school community and thereby enhance student learning.  This shared commitment will make the common goal a reality – better education. The school council operates under a town hall model whereby all parents/guardians of children attending Gilbert Paterson are members of the school council.  The agenda will be posted in the newsletter each month.  GPMS School Council strives to communicate with all of the parents of the school. 

PARKING - StationnementWe encourage students to “PARK AND WALK”. Drop your child off an appropriate distance from the school and have them walk some distance to school. Students are to enter the school through the FRONT door only. For safety reasons, please avoid "dropping off' or "picking up" students via the staff parking lot.    

BICYCLES - BicyclettesBicycles are not to be ridden on the school grounds. Students riding bicycles to school are to place them in the bike racks and lock them with a high quality, sturdy lock. Similar rules apply with students riding skateboards to school: they are to be locked in student lockers.  Helmets are mandatory by law. The school is not responsible for lost or stolen bicycles or accessories.  

BUSES - AutobusThe distance a student must live from the school in order to qualify for bussing is set by Alberta Education.  Students living in the GPMS boundary and more than 2.4 km from the school, as determined by school district maps, will be issued a bus pass.  If a student lives the required distance from the school, they will ride a yellow bus or be issued a City Bus Pass each month, depending on the area of the city where they reside.  Lost busses issued for the city bus will not be replaced.  

NEWSLETTER - Bulletin d' information
A bi-weekly newsletter will be available online at www.gp.lethsd.ab.ca. A calendar of upcoming events will be included in each newsletter. An email will be sent out as a reminder when the newsletter has been updated.    

WEBSITE- Site webWe encourage students and parents to stay informed by utilizing our Gilbert Paterson website. gp.lethsd.ab.ca . Class assignments, upcoming events, calendars and parent information are all available online.  

SCHOOL CASH ON LINESchool Cash OnLine is the method of payment for school fees in the Lethbridge School District.  Instructions for sign up are located on our GPMS website. The only other method of payment beside School Cash OnLine is cash, but exact change must be provided. We do not have a cash float in the school to provide change.  

STUDENT SUPPLIES - Fourniture scolaireStudents are expected to have school supplies for all their academic programs and their option classes. Each teacher or team of teachers will provide a list of basic supplies to assist parents in their initial purchases. Additional supply fees will be added to the student’s School Cash Online account. School supply lists can be found on our school website.  

CHANGE OF ADDRESS/TELEPHONE NUMBERS/EMAIL ADDRESS - Changement d’adresse/Numéros de téléphone/Adresse courrielPlease notify the office of any change of address, telephone number and/or email address. Please notify the office as early as possible if students are moving or transferring to a different school.