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 Welcome from the Junior School Principal


Welcome to the Junior School. We are delighted that you have chosen to be a part of our school community. The Junior School is a warm, caring community with a wonderfully collaborative learning environment for children, faculty, staff and families; and, we look forward to working in partnership alongside you.

This Welcome Package outlines some ways you and your family can become immersed in the school community – through volunteer opportunities, co-curricular activities and athletic programmes. This package will also serve as a useful reference guide to prepare you for your transition to The York School and help you navigate, more seamlessly, your first few months. If you have any questions or concerns, we urge you to consult the Junior School Family Handbook available through YorkNet. Our doors are always open and we would be happy to meet with you if you have any questions, comments or feedback.

We look forward to formally welcoming your family in September; we wish you a safe and happy summer.

Valerie Turner
Junior School Principal
416.926.1325 ext. 1631


Junior School New Student Checklist


Save the Date!

  • New Student Orientation Day: Tuesday, September 3, 2019

  • First Day of School: Wednesday, September 4, 2019

By early June, 2019

  • Read the Welcome Package

  • Update and complete student medical forms on YorkNet (step by step video on how to fill in form is here)

By middle of June, 2019

  • Sign-in to YorkNet and explore the dashboard

  • Update and complete student medical forms on YorkNet (video outlining how to fill in the form can be found here)

  • Book uniform fitting on June 10, 11 or 12, 2019 from 3:00-7:00pm (highly recommended)

  • Order Uniform items

By end of August, 2019

  • Complete all YorkNet forms online

  • Check and update your family information on YorkNet

  • Register for Before & After Care Programme

September 3, 2019

  • New Student Orientation Day, 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM

    • Find your classroom

    • Talk to your Homeroom Teacher

    • Find your cubbie

    • Tour the school

September 4, 2019

  • First day of school, arrive early at 8:00 AM

    • Dress in Summer Uniform (bring a sweatshirt if the weather is cool)

    • Pack lunch/snacks as needed

    • Confirm family plan for dismissal

In September, 2019

  • Register for Co-Curricular programmes via YorkNet

  • Register for Gladiator Athletic Development Programmes via YorkNet

  • Register for Athletics via YorkNet

  • Attend Curriculum Night for school and grade-specific information

Key Dates

Monday, June 10, 2019 - Fall 2019 Co-Curricular Programme Guide available online

June 10, 11 or 12 2019 - Book Uniform Fitting Appointment

Tuesday, September 3, 2019 - New Student Orientation Day

Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - First Day of School

Wednesday, September 18, 2019 - Terry Fox Run

Thursday, September 19, 2019 - Middle & Senior School Curriculum Night

Friday, September 27, 2019 - Third 2019-2020 Tuition Payment Due

Friday, October 11, 2019 - No classes

Monday, October 14, 2019 - Thanksgiving Day (no classes)

Friday, November 8, 2019 - Monday, November 11, 2019 - Midterm Break

Friday, November 29, 2019 - PD Day (No classes)


Monday, December 23, 2019 - Friday, January 3, 2020 - Winter Break

Friday, January 24, 2020 - PD Day (No classes)

Friday, February 14 - Monday, February 17, 2020 - Winter Mid-term Break

Monday, March 9 - Friday, March 20, 2020 - March Break

Friday, April 10, 2020 - Good Friday (No classes)

Monday, April 13, 2020 - Easter Monday (No classes)

Friday, May 15, 2020 - Founder’s Day

Monday, May 18, 2020 - Victoria Day

Friday, June 5, 2020 - York Parents’ Association Annual General Meeting

Friday, June 12, 2020 - Last Day of School

Junior School Daily Schedule

Start time
JK-SK: 8:30-9:00 a.m.
Grades 1-5: 8:15 a.m.


Recess 1
Grades 1-3: 10:00 a.m. - 10:20 a.m.
Grades 4-5: 10:20 a.m. - 10:40 a.m.
JK - SK: 11:30 a.m. - 11:55 a.m.

JK - SK: 11:55 p.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Grades 1-4 (with recess): 12:15 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Grade 5 (with recess): 11:30 p.m. - 12:15 p.m.

Recess 2
Grades 1-3: 2:00 p.m. - 2:25 p.m.
Grades 4-5: 2:25 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

End time
JK - SK: 3:30 - 4 p.m.
Grades 1-5: 3:45

Start time immediately after dismissal


Uniform Guide

We feel a great sense of pride and privilege in being part of The York School community. We express that pride in the respectful way we talk about our school and its community members, and by our embracing the values and traditions of the school. One of those traditions is our uniform. The uniform acts as a symbol of our school, and by proudly wearing it, students express to one another their commitment to the school and its values. We encourage students to recognize the importance of making an outward show of their allegiance to our school, and in doing so, to wear their uniform well.

For a complete list of uniform items and requirements, please read the Uniform Guide.

All uniform items must be purchased online through TopMarks:
1. Visit https://topmarksorders.ca/
2. Go to “Online Orders”
3. Enter school code: YOR01
4. Create your account
5. Take your own measurements or book a fitting appointment at our Junior School on June 10, 11 or 12 2019.

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Junior School Technology


The Role of Technology

As the world changes rapidly around our students, it is important that their learning tools reflect and keep pace with that change. At The York School, the Learning, Technology and Innovation department works with each grade and specialist teacher to find meaningful ways to enrich and deepen student learning.

This collaborative approach ensures that we are constantly searching for opportunities and experiences that will enhance the curriculum and has allowed us to curate a developmentally appropriate learning toolkit that enables our teachers and students to work at their best.

JK through - Grade 2 - access to classroom sets of iPads to help them inquire, question and explore
Grades 3 - 5 - individual Chromebooks to support and enrich student learning.

The Primary Years Programme (PYP) in the IB curriculum focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both inside and outside the classroom. The PYP Programme of Inquiry offers many opportunities for our students to experience new and emerging technologies like 3D design, coding and multimedia creation.

Homeroom Ambassador Family Programme

At the Junior School, Homeroom Ambassador families are assigned to all new families, with the exception of JK and SK.

A Homeroom Ambassador family is chosen from the grade and class where the new student will be placed in the fall. Part of the responsibility of the Homeroom Ambassador family is to contact the new student’s family over the course of the summer – for a get together, a conversation, to answer questions about the school, etc. – and the student ambassador will also offer support to the new student throughout the first few weeks of school. The Homeroom Ambassador programme ensures that all new students and their families feel welcome.

Student Life

Junior School Student Life

Andrea Hughes
Junior School Leadership Coordinator
(416) 926-1325 x 1706

Student Wellness

Amy Faba
Junior School PSE (Personal Social Education) Teacher
416-926-1326 x 1625


Drop-off and Pick-up

Drivers who wish to park off-site can utilize either side of Yonge Street for one-hour parking (until 4:00pm) or the 15-minute school parking zone directly in front of the school. Drivers who park off-site, as well as those people who walk, bike, or take the TTC, must enter and exit The York School via the Yonge Street entrance. All students should be picked up from the playground at the back of the school.

Drivers who wish to utilize The York School laneway via The Yorkminster Park Baptist Church parking lot may do so between 3:15 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. The access to the church parking lot is from Heath Street East. Drivers must pick up students according to the following staggered schedule:


The drop-off times are:

7:30 AM - 8:00 AM - Before Care in the Discovery Zone
8:00 AM - 8:15 AM - Grade 1 -5 and JK/SK students with older siblings in the playground
8:15 AM - 8:30 AM - All student at the back door
8:30 AM - 9:00 AM - JK and SK students in the playground


The pick-up times are:

3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. JK/SK pick-up
3:45 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Grades 1-5 pick-up

There is no parking on-site, but we are fortunate to have the availability for free parking on both northbound and southbound Yonge Street. Parents may also park in one of the Green P lots in the area but are not allowed to park in the church lot or in the cemetery. We encourage parents who wish to walk their child into school in the morning to stay and chat with other parents or spend some time in the afternoon before pick-up. To do so, they can park on either side of Yonge Street.

On rainy or wet days, students will be kept in classrooms for pick-up. Teachers use walkie talkies and the PA system to call students to the Gathering Place or the backdoor for pick-up.

Pick-up Information Form
To help us ensure your child’s safety, only people listed on the child’s profile on YorkNet will be permitted to pick-up. All updates can be made through YorkNet. On any day that your child will not be going home with the person/carpool indicated on the form, please communicate this to the teacher.


Before Care & After Care

Before Care
There is supervision provided at the Junior School for students from 7:30 a.m. Note: doors will not open until 7:30 a.m.

After Care
After Care is offered to students from JK to Grade 5. The daily programme commences after classes end and continues until 6:00 p.m. This service provides students with a seamless transition from their school day to a familiar, pleasant and safe environment where they can do their homework, play, relax and have a snack. Aftercare is open every day that school is in session, including early closing and interview days, but not during professional activity days, holidays or other times such as snow days when there are no classes.  


All costs for Before and After Care are included in the tuition for JK and SK students. Students in Grades 1 to 5 who pre-register for Before and After Care and attend on a regular basis, a fee of $15 per hour is charged and billed to your school account monthly. Students who are not pre-registered for Before and After Care or are brought to After Care at 4:00 p.m. after school is dismissed, or attend Before and After Care on a drop-in basis, a fee of $20.00 per hour, will be charged and billed to the student account on a monthly basis. Students in the After Care program who attend Co-Curricular or Athletic Programmes after school will be billed only for the time they are in Aftercare.

After Care ends at 6:00 p.m. Late fees of $30 per quarter hour, or any part thereof, will be charged after this time (JK-Grade 5).

The York School Code of Conduct also applies to After Care. The school reserves the right to withdraw your child if The York School Code of Conduct is not upheld, school policies are not followed or there is a continuous disregard for the 6:00 p.m. pick-up time.

Students in JK to Grade 5 who are still on school premises at 4:00 p.m. or 15 minutes after the conclusion of their school activities will be placed in After Care.


Junior School Co-Curricular Programme


Each term, students in JK to Grade 5 can register for a variety of Co-Curricular Programmes such as choir, chess, individual piano and guitar lessons, art, science and technology programmes and many more.

There is a wide range of programmes offered for each of the fall, winter and spring terms. The Fall 2019 Co-Curricular Programme Guide will be available online on June 10, 2019, prior to online registration September 5, 2019.

Each programme has limited enrollment (both minimum and maximum numbers). Spaces can fill quickly, so please ensure that you are aware of the registration start date and time. This information is communicated through the Flash.

Register early to avoid disappointment.

For more information pertaining to Co-Curricular Programmes and Aftercare, please contact the Director of Academic Operations,
Karen McCallum-Ryan
416 926 1325 ext. 1616


The Junior Athletics Programme gives our athletes a variety of positive experiences across a wide variety of sports including soccer, basketball, volleyball and track and field. Through participation in the Junior School Athletics Programme, our athletes improve their daily fitness and sport specific skills while contributing to the vibrant athletic culture of our school. To learn more about the athletic offerings at The York School, please see the 2019-2020 Athletics Handbook on our website here.


School Trips

Given our emphasis on experiential learning, students engage in a number of school trips. In planning trips to enhance learning, teachers take measures to investigate and mitigate risks, account for contingencies, and inform you, the parents, of the important details of the trip so that you can give proper consent to your child’s participation and support your child’s involvement.

The system for informing parents involves three levels of information.

Level 1 trips are simple trips within the city that pose level of risk that would commonly be met by your child in the course of a school day. These include trips to the museum, theatre, sports facility, or music venue. All parents provide a blanket consent for these trips at the beginning of the year. You will be notified of the details of any such trip ahead of time by Level 1 trip form that will be sent by email, and you have an opportunity to reply and share any concerns regarding your child’s involvement. Otherwise, we will rely upon the blanket consent having been given at the beginning of the year.

Level II trips typically involve a higher level of risk, an unfamiliar setting, an overnight stay, and/or possibly less immediate access to emergency services. Examples would include trips to Camp Oochigeas, a climbing wall in the city, a swimming pool, a skating rink, a ski hill, an all-weekend debating tournament, the CN tower climb, or an amusement park. Parents will receive notice of the particulars of any Level II trip, including risks, and will have to provide specific written consent for each trip.

Level III trips are trips which require a great deal of planning and a high level of expertise and where it is essential that parents have an opportunity to fully understand the trip before providing their consent. Examples would include extended international travel and adventurous activities such as those taking place in the wilderness — e.g., backpacking, canoeing (flat and moving water), kayaking, dog sledding, horseback riding and winter camping. All such trips will involve a meeting with parents in which parents have an opportunity to ask questions and receive informed answers. In most cases, students will meet with the group leaders ahead of time and receive extensive preparation, which may include the checking of personal clothing and equipment.

We encourage parents to communicate any concerns regarding their child’s involvement in the trip to the trip leaders at an early stage. Keep in mind that we rely upon the medical information that parents provided at the beginning of the year and taht any changes in that information must be made known to the administration.


Food & Allergy Policy


Evidence suggests that eating healthy foods can help with academic performance and attention span in the classroom while maintaining positive moods and sustained energy levels through out the day. Healthy childhood diets reduce the risk of colds and flu, and can impact long term wellness. Educating children now can help them to develop the skills and understanding to make healthy lifestyle choices later.


The York School is committed to providing balanced and nutritious food choices to promote a healthy lifestyle. With this in mind, The York School has partnered with Aramark to develop an exceptional food services programme . that enhances the student’s experience by providing them with fresh, nutritious food with an emphasis on health and environmental sustainability.


There are a number of students throughout the Junior School have life-threatening allergic reactions called anaphylaxis. This means that their airways can close and they can stop breathing. Typical anaphylaxis triggers include insect stings, medication, exercise, latex and, most often, specific foods. In Canada, the top food allergens are peanuts, pine nuts, tree nuts, sesame seeds, beans, fish, crustacean and shellfish, sulphites, wheat, milk, soybeans and eggs.

In an effort to provide the care that severely allergic children may require, the allergy is noted on our database and we post Anaphylaxis Alert posters for these children in the staff room, in the main office, in the kitchen and in the child’s homeroom. The students are required to have 3 Epipens with them at the start of each school (each Epipen should include that child’s name). The students are required to wear one Epipen on them at all times; as well, we keep one in the office and one in the kitchen. In addition, to avoid a severe or even fatal reaction for students with nut and nut-related products, The York School makes every effort to be a nut-aware environment. Foods prepared in our cafeteria do not knowingly contain peanuts, nuts or nut-related products or sesame. We do not permit any sharing of food or utensils. The tabletops are washed between each lunch shift.

Although children with food allergies are taught and encouraged to be vigilant about the foods they consume, in an attempt to avoid a crisis we ask that when you pack snacks and lunches, you do not send any foods that contain peanuts, nuts or nut-related products. Foods that have the “May contain…” label are unacceptable, as are foods that specify nuts and seeds in the ingredients life. You must always read the list of ingredients on all pre-packaged foods before you send them to school. If your children have peanut butter or any other nut-related product for breakfast, please ensure that they brush their teeth and wash their face and hands before going to school.

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your child’s homeroom teacher. Thank you for your consideration and cooperation in helping to make The York School a safe environment for all our students.

School Responsibilities

  • Monitor and evaluate the opportunities for promoting healthy lifestyles

  • Educate students through our physical and health education programme, as well as through school-wide activities

  • Provide daily hot entrees, following Canada’s Food Guide, which are wholesome and nutritious

  • Focus on providing products that are lower in trans and saturated fat, sugar and salt

  • Make every effort to customize food for specific dietary needs

  • Oversee and guide students’ meal choices

  • Educate students on reasons for not sharing food

  • Monitor the type and numbers of treats brought in to school for special events

  • Provide parents with nutritional information through The Flash and other school communications

  • Provide guidance to parents on healthy lunch and snack choices

  • Support the continuation of a nutrition committee consisting of staff, faculty, and parents

Parent Responsibilities

  • Send in balanced and nutritious lunches and snacks

  • Ensure that all foods sent to school are nut-free

  • Reinforce the “no sharing” policy

  • Use reusable containers whenever possible

  • Only provide food for the class when requested by the teacher

Snack Policy

Healthy snacks are provided both in the morning and the afternoon. For students who may need more snack than what’s provided, healthy snacks may be sent for both in the morning and afternoon nutrition breaks. Snacks should:

  • Be balanced and nutritious

  • Be nut-free (both peanut-free and tree-nut free)

  • Not cause “food envy” among students. No junk food, sugary treats, juice, chocolate milk, and other “enviable” foods are acceptable and will be returned home.

  • Send reusable containers whenever possible

  • Send in a reusable water bottle filled with water

Birthday Policy

In order to honour student birthdays, and to continue to promote healthy eating, birthdays will be celebrated three times a year. The York School, in collaboration with Aramark, will provide a sweet treat to celebrate on the following three occasions throughout the year:

Students celebrating birthdays during Term 1 (August, September, October, November) will share a treat in November.

Students whose birthdays land during Term 2 (December, January, February, March) will share a treat in March.

Students whose birthdays fall end of year (April, May, June, July) will share a treat in June.


Junior School Playground - Coming Sept. 2020

Children entering the Junior School in September 2020 will enjoy a newly designed Junior School Playground!  

Unique and innovative it will be a space for recess, outdoor learning and after-school practices!  

With opportunities to play, learn and take risk - The York School’s Playground promises to be an extension of the classroom. Our Architects have designed a Playground that our children will absolutely love.

Many of you have been instrumental by supporting the initiative, and we are incredibly thankful to be part of such a wonderful and generous community.   

For a sneak peek, visit www.reimagineplay.ca to see the Playground Design Rendering.

The new playground will include the following components:

  • Wallholla - Vertical Play Structure

  • Multi-Purpose Field

  • An Outdoor Classroom

  • Reflection Wall

  • Performance Stage

  • Basketball Court

  • JK/SK Play Zone


Junior School FAQs


Should I accompany my child to their classroom on the first day of school?

On the first day of school, new families are invited to arrive at school at 7:50 AM, ten minutes prior to regular drop-off time, and may go directly to their Homeroom. Homeroom teachers will accompany new students to the drop-off area for 8:15 AM.

Where is there parking at the Junior School campus?

Parking ID 223

Parking ID 223

There is no available parking at the Junior School campus. There is a 15-minute “drop-off” zone outside of the school during regular school hours. There is other limited parking on Yonge Street. There are also several public paid parking lots within walking distance of the school. The York School families are not permitted to park in the Yorkminster Park Baptist Church’s parking lot.

What time does morning care start?

Students can be dropped off at school after 7:30 a.m. Students engage in supervised activities in the Discovery Zone, on the first floor, until the beginning of the school day.

What is The Flash?

The Flash is our weekly communication to The York School community. It is an overview of what was happened during the week and what is coming up. It is important to check it weekly as it contains important information for families.

My child really wants to participate in the Athletic teams. Who do I talk to about this?

Notifications to sign-up for Athletics will be provided the first week of school. All information is available on YorkNet.

What is GADP?

GADP, or Gladiator Athletics Development Programme, is the athletic programme for the younger students. Programme descriptions, day, time, and cost information will be provided during the first week of school. Instructions to register will also be provided.

Where do I find my child’s class timetable?

During the first week of school, your child will receive their timetable. It will also be posted in one of the first Flash messages of the year.

If my child is absent, who do I let know?

Please email 1639attendance@yorkschool.com to report any absences. As well, if your child arrives late, please have them sign in with reception upon arrival.

Should I send my child to school with a packed lunch?

The Junior School lunch programme will be provided every day for all Junior School students at no additional charge.