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Safe Schools

Mackenzie is committed to making our learning environment safe for students and staff.  Click on a link below to learn more about our security and safety procedures.  Each are described in this section, and pertain to either Elementary, Secondary, or both:

  • Safe Arrival Check (Elementary)
  • Visitor Check-in and Building Access (Elementary/Secondary)
  • Drop-off and Pick-up of Students (Elementary/Secondary)
  • Safety Drills (Elementary/Secondary)
  • Character Education (Elementary/Secondary)

If you have any questions about our safety policies and procedures please contact us.

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Safe Arrival Check

As part of safe arrival check:

  • Parents/Guardians should ensure that the school office has updated addresses and telephone contact numbers including at least one additional emergency contact name and number.
  • If your child is absent, please call the main office (an answering machine service is available 24 hours a day).
  • Parents/Guardians are asked to call the Main Office or send a note if their child will be absent or arriving late. Students arriving late will come to the Main Office to obtain a late slip for admission to class.
  • If a student is not present or accounted for, our automated system will call you.  This policy is not a guarantee of safety and is only effective if parents keep the office informed of absences and if updated contact numbers are available. 

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Visitor Check-In and Building Access

All visitors, including parents, are to report to the main office to sign in.  

  • For safety reasons, our school building is locked during school hours from 9:30 am - 3:30 pm.
  • If you wish access to our building, you must report to the main entrance alcove to buzz in and speak with a secretary. This entrance is located at the front of the school opposite the river and by the visitor parking area. You will be required to sign in and will receive a visitor badge.
  • If a student is late and requires entry to the building, they will buzz in and proceed to the office to sign in.

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Drop-off and Pick-up of Students

When dropping off your child, pull into the drop off lane, stop at the main entrance to let your child out and then continue out of the parking lot. During the morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times, please move along to the end of the lane to avoid backing up traffic.

If you require more time, please park in the designated visitor's parking.

  • Parents who wish to pick up their child during the school day must sign in at the office.
  • If you are making alternate pick-up arrangements for your child, please send a note to your child's teacher and call the main office ahead of time.
  • Plan your child's pick-up with nutrition/activity breaks to avoid interruption of student learning. See School Day Schedules for more information.
  • Parents/Guardians are to remain in the hall by the main office when waiting for their child. Please ensure the office staff know you are picking up your child. Parents are not to be on the yard or in halls without expressed permission.  Visitor name tags must be worn when in the school.

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Safety Drills

At Mackenzie Community School, we take the responsibility of protecting our students and staff very seriously.  As part of our Emergency Response Plan and consistent with the RCDSB policy, staff and students participate in Fire and Lockdown safety drills.  The drills are designed to prepare our school community to respond to emergencies with a sense of confidence and calm.

Fire Drill

  • We are required by law to have 6 fire drills during the school year (three per semester as set out by the secondary school schedule).  
  • Each classroom is equipped with a sign that clearly indicates the exit for that classroom and the alternate exit if needed.  Teachers will guide their classes to the appropriate exit.
  • Classes will move to designated safe-distance meeting areas away from the school.  Each teacher will take attendance of their class to ensure all have exited the building.
  • A communication procedure is in place in the event a student is not with their class at the required meeting area.

Lockdown drill

  • We are required to have two lockdown drills per school year.
  • All members of the school will be directed to a secure area where they will remain behind a locked door.  Classes will stay in their classroom with doors closed and locked.
  • No one may leave their secure area until the "all clear" announcement is made.
  • A lockdown is used when it is suspected that an intruder has entered the school and poses a threat to the safety of students and staff.
  • Parents/Guardians play an important role in school safety by talking to their child about what to do in the event of a crisis.  Parents should discuss the procedures below with their child and encourage her/him to stay calm in an emergency situation.

As part of our lockdown safety drills:

  • Teachers explain to students the procedure which each class will follow.
  • Following an announcement indicating the beginning of a lockdown, all classroom doors are closed and locked, window blinds are drawn, and staff and students quietly wait in the classrooms in a position away from windows and doors, with lights off if possible.
  • As is presented in the policy, the fire alarm may be pulled during this exercise.
  • All students, staff and visitors remain within their classes until provided with the 'all clear' signal.
  • Police provide assistance during some drills.
  • Contingency plans are reviewed if a class is outside of the classroom during a drill (ie. library, gym, cafeteria, outside). 

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Character Education

Bullying

Bullying is not accepted at Mackenzie Community School.

Bullying, as defined by the province, is typically a form of repeated, persistent, aggressive behaviour that is directed at an individual(s) that is intended to cause (or should be known to cause) fear, distress, and/or harm to another person's body, feelings, self-esteem, or reputation.

Bullying occurs in a context where there is real or perceived power imbalance. Incidents of bullying should be reported to any staff member at Mackenzie Community School or directly to the school administration. 

Please read our code of conduct for further information.

Harassment

Harassment is behaviour that is unwelcome, one-sided and makes the receiver feel uncomfortable or offended. Harassment may include comments about someone's appearance or lifestyle, or it may be behaviour that causes a person to feel embarrassed or inadequate.

Usually harassment is repeated behaviour. At its worst, harassment may be threats, intimidation, or assault. In adherence with the Ontario Human Rights Code, the RCDSB policy is that every teacher, staff member, parent or guardian, volunteer, and student has a right to freedom from harassment in the workplace and school system because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, record of offences, marital status, family status, employment status, or disability. Incidents of harassment can be reported to any staff member or directly to the school administration.

Student-to-Student Sexual Harassment

Every student needs to be responsible for their words and actions and the way they can make other students feel. There are no excuses for sexual harassment: it is illegal.

Sexual harassment is:

  • Unwanted, uninvited, sexual attention
  • May involve remarks, gestures, sounds or actions of a sexual nature that make a person feel unsafe, degraded or uncomfortable
  • An intimidating, hostile, or offensive learning environment

If you are experiencing sexual harassment, write down what is happening: dates, times, locations, details, witnesses. There are three (3) options you can take to deal with sexual harassment:

  1. Talk one-to-one with the person who is harassing you.
  2. You can request help and support to stop the harassment.
  3. You can report the incident to school administration.

Inappropriate Displays of Affection

As in a place of business, inappropriate kissing and embracing is not acceptable in the school setting.