School News

Ms Curtis' Kindergarten Class is making their own Books! 

Playing on the Fernwood field

Our new playground! 

Looking Ahead Dates: 

 Thursday, September 17Fall 2020 Configuration Review Phase II:
Committee of the Whole: In-depth formal public presentation of the financial and operational feasibility study
(see Zoom meeting link on Board Meetings page)
Thursday, September 24 Early Dismissal Day (school is out at noon) for "Tell Me About Your Child" Parent/Teacher appointments (You will be contacted by our Teacher about these appointments.)
Tuesday, September 29 Fire Drill 
Wednesday, September 30 Orange Shirt Day ("Read-In")
Tuesday, October 6 Fernwood School Terry Fox Run 
Monday, October 12 Thanksgiving Day 
Friday, October 16 Friday School Day (due to Monday holiday) 
Wednesday, October 21School Photo Day (Individual Portrait - not the class photo) 
Fernwood School Restart Plan

School Supply Lists 
School Fee $30 
Payment options are cash, or cheque to "Fernwood Elementary School", or etransfer to Leah Ashford at 

Reminder: Early Dismissal Day Thursday NOON

posted by Leah Ashford

Thursday, September 24th is an Early Dismissal Day (school is out at noon) when you will have an opportunity to meet with your son/daughter's teacher one on one for  "Tell Me About Your Child" meetings in the afternoon. Teachers will have been in touch about scheduling the Tell Me About Your Child meetings. These meetings are a way for a parent to communicate to the teacher their child's strengths and areas for growth for their child this year. 

School is dismissed at noon. Please pick up your child at their classroom outside door at noon. There is no supervision beyond 12:20 pm. 

Wear Your Orange Shirt - Wednesday, September 30th

posted by Leah Ashford   [ updated ]

Orange Shirt Day is a legacy of the St. Joseph Mission (SJM) residential school commemoration event held in Williams Lake, B.C.,Canada, in the spring of 2013. It grew out of Phyllis' Story of having her orange shirt taken away on her first day of school at the Mission, and it has become an opportunity to keep the discussion on all aspects of residential schools happening annually. 

Embracing First Peoples' principles of learning and culture is one of our guiding values at Fernwood School. We strive to incorporate these into our daily and weekly routines to enhance the learning of all students, and especially our students of indigenous ancestry. 

We are asking that students and staff members wear an orange shirt on Wednesday, September 30th. We will be having a "read-in" at school that day where Teachers and students will share time together reading a storybook from our library Aboriginal Education titles.

For more information and to view the video "Phyllis Webstad Orange Shirt Day Presentation", please see:

Support for Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope

posted by Leah Ashford

This year is the 40th Anniversary of Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope and Fernwood Elementary is proud to be continuing the legacy of one of our greatest heroes. Please join us and support this wonderful cause by donating to: Together, we can all make a difference! #terryfoxschoolruns @terryfoxfoundation

Fernwood Elementary will have their own Terry Fox Run on Tuesday, October 6th (in learning groups). Please consider supporting Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope by donating to the link above or bringing a donation to school anytime. 

Thank You to the Lions Club of Salt Spring Island

posted by Leah Ashford   [ updated ]

Thank you to the Lions Club of Salt Spring Island for their generous $500 donation to Fernwood Elementary School to help supply our cupboards for our "food for hungry kids" program.

Thank You to Country Grocer!

posted by Leah Ashford   [ updated ]

We wanted to give a very big "thank you" to Country Grocer! They have generously donated to the Fernwood PAC to fund our Breakfast Program so we can continue to have nutritious fresh food in our cupboards if there is ever a need. "Grab and Go" style paper bags will be made weekly containing for example a fresh piece of fruit, a muffin, and a protein. 

Bus Transportation Interruptions - Saltspring (email to parents Sept 22)

posted by Leah Ashford

Dear Parents and Families,


We recognize that the sudden cancellation of routes on Saltspring Island has a significant impact to families during an already complicated time.  We want to assure parents that we are working closely with our employee groups, local CUPE representation and relevant regulatory agencies.


Some drivers have expressed concern that there are not any physical barriers installed on the school buses. The district has committed to purchasing physical barriers when an approved barrier is developed. The Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement (CVSE) agency has to approve a barrier before it can be installed on a commercial vehicle. There is currently not a CVSE approved physical barrier for school buses.


A link to the current bus route schedules has been added to front page of the SD64 website  and it will be updated when any changes are made or are anticipated. Impacted parents will be contacted by their Principal, by phone or email, when a change has occurred.





Jesse Guy

Secretary Treasurer, CPA, CA
School District No. 64 (Gulf Islands)

Daily Health Check (email to parents Sept 22)

posted by Leah Ashford

Dear Fernwood Families, 

The attached Health Check was recently updated by the Ministry of Health/BC Centre of Disease Control. Of note, runny nose and sore throat was taken off the list due to the "low probability they would be a sign of COVID-19 infection on their own". 

If a symptom such as a sore throat or runny nose is accompanied by one or more on the Daily Health Check, it is recommended that you consult your healthcare provider or call 811.

It is also recommended to seek a health assessment if there is a fever, either with or without other symptoms.

Please see the attached Updated information. 

Bus Update - Starting Wednesday, September 23rd Bus 4 Temporarily Unavailable

posted Sep 22, 2020, 11:37 AM by Leah Ashford

We have received notification that Bus 4 (along with Bus 5) is temporarily unavailable starting Wednesday, September 23rd onward. 
The District Website has been updated:

Important Health and Safety Update

posted Sep 17, 2020, 4:31 PM by Leah Ashford   [ updated Sep 17, 2020, 4:33 PM ]

Dear Families, 


Please review the updated health and safety updates outlined in the COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for K-12 School Settings document.  The updated document is also attached. 

Physical Distancing  

Physical distancing refers to a range of measures aimed at reducing close contact with others. Physical distancing is used as a prevention measure because COVID-19 tends to spread through prolonged, close (face-to-face) contact.  

  • Within cohorts, physical distancing should include avoiding physical contact, minimizing close, prolonged, face- to-face interactions, and spreading out as much as possible within the space available.  

  • Outside of cohorts, practicing physical distancing should include avoiding physical contact and close, prolonged face-to-face interactions, spreading out as much as possible within the space available, and ensuring there is 1-2 meters of space available between people.  

  • Spaces where members of different cohorts interact should be sufficiently large, and/or should have limits on the number of people so that 1-2 meters of space is available between people  


Stay Home When New Symptoms of Illness Develop  

Students and staff should stay at home when new symptoms of illness develop. The key symptoms to watch for are fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, loss of sense of smell or taste, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.  

  • If the staff or student (or their parent) indicates that the symptoms are consistent with a previously diagnosed health condition and are not unusual for that individual, they may return to school. No assessment or note is required from a health care provider.  

  • For mild symptoms without fever, students and staff can monitor at home for 24 hours. If symptoms improve, they can return to school without further assessment.  

  • If symptoms include fever, or if after 24 hours, symptoms remain unchanged or worsen, seek a health assessment. A health assessment can include calling 8-1-1, a primary care provider like a physician or nurse practitioner or going to a COVID-19 testing centre.  

  • When a COVID-19 test is recommended by the health assessment:  

  • If the COVID-19 test is positive, the person should stay home until they are told by public health to end their self-isolation. In most cases this is 10 days after the onset of symptoms. Public health will contact everyone with a positive test.  

  • If the COVID-19 test is negative, the person can return to school once symptoms have improved and they feel well enough. Symptoms of common respiratory illnesses can persist for a week or more. Re-testing is not needed unless the person develops a new illness. BCCDC has information on receiving negative test results.  

  • If a COVID-19 test is recommended but is not done because the person or parent chooses not to have the test or a health assessment is not sought when recommended, and the person’s symptoms are not related to a previously diagnosed health condition, they should stay home from school until 10 days after the onset of symptoms, and then may return if feeling well enough.  

  • If a COVID-19 test is not recommended by the health assessment, the person can return to school when symptoms have improved, and they feel well enough. Testing may not be recommended if the assessment determines that the symptoms are due to another cause (i.e. not COVID-19).  

Air Quality

posted Sep 17, 2020, 3:46 PM by Leah Ashford   [ updated Sep 17, 2020, 4:27 PM ]

Our school district has been monitoring the air quality situation, and follow the recommendations from the Ministry and public health experts to ensure that schools continue to be safe environments for staff and students. At the advice of the local Medical Health Officer, schools continue efforts to limit smoke exposure for staff and students by:

  • Allowing students who are sensitive to the smoke to remain indoors during lunch/breaks;
  • Closing exterior doors and windows and utilizing filtered ventilation systems;
  • Rescheduling outdoor activities, particularly strenuous activities like PE;
  • Closely monitor students with asthma or other breathing conditions.

Please let us know if there is any information we need to know about your child. 

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