School Life

Agenda Books

Beginning September 2020, the traditional 'agenda book' will be replaced with digital communication via our website, Google Classroom, email, and telephone communication.


Students are involved in daily physical activity and school teams that include; soccer, volleyball, basketball, cross country running, three pitch, track and field. For more information please see our Clubs and Sports page.

Excellence in Learning

Students come to school interested in learning and staff provide students the support they need to succeed.

Living our Faith

The students of St. Joseph school live their faith through daily discussions regarding the Catholic Virtues, the Catholic Graduate Expectations and appropriate grade level Catechesis.

Social Justice

The school community is supportive of local and global social justice issues.

Attendance Expectations

If you are not feeling well, please tell your parents before coming to school. If you are too ill to go out at recess, you are too ill to be at school. Please rest at home until you are better. If you become ill or are injured at school, let your teacher know. You will be sent to the office where we will call your parents/guardians. Cell phones cannot be used to call parents during the school day.

Punctuality and regular attendance on the part of the student is important to the process of learning. Both the individual student and his or her classmates may be impacted as a result of this issue. Parents will be contacted when late attendance and punctuality become a concern. Board attendance counsellors will be involved if attendance and punctuality do not improve after parent contact has been made by the school. If you child is late for school, they must report to the Office to receive an admission slip.

When your child is going to be absent from school, for any reason, please contact the school at 905-372-6879.


The St. Joseph Safe School Arrival Program is designed to ensure that you arrive safely at school. When you are absent from school (or are going to be very late), remind your mother, father, or guardian to call the school and report your absence or late arrival. The school’s answering system is always on; please have your parent or guardian leave your name, grade, teacher, reason for absence, and how long you will be absent.

If we do not receive a call to explain your absence, we will do the following to ensure that you are safe:

    • call your home

    • call your parent/guardian at work

    • call the emergency contact number

    • call the Cobourg Police Department


Being on time for school is very important. Being late may mean that you have missed some important information and your late arrival may disrupt the class. You are late for school if you are not in the school yard area when the bell rings. Your teachers are required to record late arrivals in the Ontario Register of Daily Attendance as well as on the Provincial Report Card. If you are late, report your arrival to the office and get a late slip before going to class. Give the late slip to your teacher. Remember, students who are 10 minutes late each day miss an average of 500 minutes of instructional time each year. Students who are 20 minutes late miss 1000 minutes or 16 hours of instruction time each year.

To see the our Board's full Attendance Expectations click here

Co-curricular Activities


For safety reasons, proper attire is expected to be worn in the gym:

-running shoes (with non-marking soles)

-a short sleeved shirt, and shorts

-Clothing items, such as a belt or scarf, must not dangle. Long hair must be tied back. Earrings, watches, and rings must be removed. A note from a parent/guardian is required to temporarily exclude a student from regular Physical Education classes. Exclusion from this part of the school program for more than one week, requires a note from the family physician.

For more detail, please see our Clubs and Sports page.


For health and safety reasons, indoor footwear must be worn at all times at school. Each student should have a pair of labeled indoor shoes which can be left at school.

Code of Conduct

The School Code of Conduct outlines student behavioural expectations and responsibilities. Some of these are to:

    • attend regularly and be on time

    • respect yourself and others

    • adhere to safety practices and procedures

    • be properly prepared for class with all required materials (i.e. pencil, pen, books, etc.)

    • complete all school assignments

    • be courteous to all school staff, bus drivers and other students

    • follow directions of staff members and bus drivers

    • show respect for school property and the property of others

    • dress in a manner that reflects the Christian principles that our school professes

    • do not bring any object or substance to school that is harmful to oneself or others

The School Code of Conduct includes basic respect for others and their property and does not tolerate any form of violence. Our Code of Conduct also includes consequences when rules are not followed. These are designed to help you develop self-discipline. Students will be given positive reinforcement, praise and encouragement in recognition of their efforts and cooperation.

If you act inappropriately in the school yard, at lunch, or elsewhere in the school, a staff member may assign the following options as part of Progressive Discipline: detentions, loss of recess, parent contact, office referral or suspension.


Follow the HIGH 5 Rules:

    1. Be Safe

    2. Be Respectful

    3. Be Responsible

    4. Hands and Feet to Self

    5. Be There - Be Ready

Students are expected to:

    • at the bell, line up quietly, in single file, and wait for your teacher to lead you into the school

    • move quietly through the halls to ensure the uninterrupted learning of others

    • stay to the right, in single file, when moving through the halls

    • washrooms are to be used during class time, or during recess, only with teacher permission.

    • return library books by the due date

    • to avoid problems resulting from the careless disposal of gum on floors, desks, and outdoor grounds, gum chewing is not permitted regularly at school

    • report all strangers without a visitor’s tag to a staff member or to the office

    • before, school, at recess, and during noon hour, you may not stay in the school unless a teacher has given you permission and remains to supervise you

    • avoid body contact during play and learning activities

    • communicate with staff in a respectful way

    • participating in faith based events respectfully


You are expected to:

    • work to your full potential and to be courteous, cooperative, and attentive, during class

    • complete all homework and prepare and study for tests

    • permit others to work in an undisturbed class environment

    • demonstrate cooperation with and respect for all members of our school community.

    • food and drink are not permitted in the classroom except at snack time or lunch period. Water is allowed, preferably in reusable water containers.


    • Take responsibility for your work and your actions.

    • Read every day!

    • Listen to and follow the directions and instructions provided by your teacher.

    • Read and follow the instructions on any handout.

    • Get involved in school activities.

    • Make it your goal to do your best at all times.

    • Complete all assignments and homework.

    • Hand in all assignments and homework on time.


The process of keeping a notebook/notes has many important learning purposes. It helps you to:

    • learn and practice organizational skills daily

    • keep an on-going record of progress

    • evaluate your progress

    • practice reading and writing skills daily

    • record and apply new concepts and skills

    • use notes as study aid to prepare for tests


The school buildings, contents (i.e., desks, textbooks, library books, washrooms, gym equipment, etc.), and school grounds, deserve the same respect as one’s personal property. Students who destroy, deface, or otherwise damage property will be required to make restitution and appropriate consequences will be applied.

The school provides you with a wide variety of supplies such as workbooks, pencils, erasers, rulers, art materials, textbooks and library books. Do not doodle, write, highlight or place other marks in books.

We expect you to treat all supplies with respect and to replace or pay for items which are lost or damaged while in your care. You are responsible for all items and books assigned to you.

Your best efforts should be reflected in printing, handwriting and work habits. The cover of each notebook/binder/folder should have: your name, subject area (all correctly spelled), and with no other markings on the cover. You are responsible for correcting any errors and for completing unfinished work.


While students attending St. Joseph have no school uniform, you are expected to adhere to the following guidelines:

    • All students are expected to dress appropriately in clean, pleasant clothing.

    • Grades JK - 3 are expected to dress appropriately in whatever attire their parents feel is most suitable.

    • Students in grades 4 - 8 are expected to come appropriately attired in clothing that reflects their increasing physical maturity and responsibility.

    • the midriff and shoulders are to be covered *spaghetti straps, tank tops, halter tops, and low-cut necklines are not acceptable for school wear

    • shorts and skirts must be at least mid-thigh in length

    • clothing that is torn or has objectionable words, signs or logos is not acceptable for school wear

    • pants are to be worn at the waist

    • undergarments should not be visible

    • no clothing or decoration associated with gang membership or violence is permitted on school grounds or at school sponsored functions.

    • Caps/hats are not to be worn in the school building at any time. (Students or guests)


If you stay at school for lunch, you are not permitted to leave the school property which ensures your safety.

If you eat lunch at school, you are expected to:

    • always follow the direction of the lunch supervisor

    • eat and remain at your desk

    • talk quietly

    • clean up after yourself

    • put garbage in the garbage container and recyclables in the proper boxes


The school yard is supervised by staff. During recesses, you may not enter the school without permission from the supervisor on duty.

To ensure the safety of all students during recess and in our playground area, we:

    • do not eat any food on the yard

    • use polite respectful language

    • play within the designated boundary areas

    • keep our hands and feet to ourselves (no rough play, fighting, pushing or tripping)

    • leave snow, sand, dirt, grass, sticks, and stones on the ground

    • report all injuries to the yard supervisor immediately

    • hard baseball balls or hard rubber balls, hockey sticks, skate boards, bats, scooters, may cause injuries and are not allowed on the yard

    • items such as laser pens, toy guns, play swords, knives, and weapons of any kind are not allowed

    • stop playing when the bell rings and line up right away single file.

    • enter and exit the school in an orderly manner (i.e. walking quietly in the halls, in single file)

    • stay in your classroom during indoor recess and adhere to the classroom expectations, reading or taking part in quiet activities

We encourage you to bring a “litter free” lunch. Do not bring glass containers with lunch or snacks to school. Remember our school is a PEANUT/NUT FREE SCHOOL.


Harassment is unwanted, uninvited, inappropriate, conduct or attention. It may involve remarks, gestures, or actions that make a person feel unsafe or uncomfortable. This can include these actions in person or on phones and internet. The remarks, gestures or actions may occur over time, and in a way that causes the victim to be upset and feel that she or he cannot come to school, make use of the school, or learn properly. At St. Joseph, everyone deserves, and should always receive, understanding and respect.

Inappropriate comments, actions or ridiculing by an individual or group, that leaves someone fearful or uncomfortable about coming to school, will be addressed and subject to consequences.


Tell a friend what is happening. It will be harder for the bully to pick on you if you have a friend with you for support.

Say “NO” firmly, then turn and walk away.

Try not to show that you are upset or angry.

Don’t fight back.

Think of funny or clever replies in advance.

Stick with a group.

Practice “walking tall” in a mirror.

Tell school staff, your parents and other adults - you need their help. Don’t suffer in silence.