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What began as a community outreach project for 38 students in Grades 10-12 from St. Pius X High School has turned into something that is being widely shared an embraced throughout both the school board and greater community. St. Pius’ School Resource Officer, Ottawa Police Service Constable Phong Le, challenged the students to make a difference by getting to know a part of their community that is often marginalized and misunderstood.

The students then undertook “The Oaks Residence Project” along with five OCSB teachers to reach out beyond their school community to collaborate with residents and staff of The Oaks, Shepherds of Good Hope supportive housing. The end result was a calendar which is being sold to raise awareness about The Oaks and raise funds to support it.

The were interested in communicating an important message: that all people are important and it is our responsibility to make sure everyone gets what they need, such as a safe place to live, food, clean water, access to medical care, and, most importantly, a sense of community.

The students were enrolled in a variety of high school courses including Photography, Visual Arts, Communications Technology, and Entrepreneurship. Through their work, the staff and students of St. Pius X had the opportunity to interact with and get to know the clientele at the Oaks, developing empathy and a better understanding of their situation. The creative collaborative process included meeting the residents to get to know them, a professional photo shoot and interview with the residents, arts interpretation, desktop publishing, marketing, printing and distribution.

Alex Belloni, Principal of St. Pius X High School, along with Vice-Principal, JP Cloutier, Teachers Heather Lindale, Maria Dupont, Julie Gant, Damien Brown Graham and Kaitlin McGetrick were accompanied by students Tionne Nicole McNamara, Charlie Senack, Jacob Parent, and Crystal Camarena to will share their experience with the Board. View the presentation.

Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World

Thomas D’Amico, Associate Director of Education

Corwin Publishing has recently released a new book entitled “Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World”, by Michael Fullan, Joanne Quinn, and Joanne McEachen. Promotional material includes the following description, “Deep Learning has claimed the attention of educators and policymakers around the world. This book not only defines what deep learning is, but takes up the question of how to mobilize complex, whole-system change and transform learning for all students.”

Pages 130-135 of the book feature a profile of the OCSB, listed as a Global District on the Move. The student vignettes on pages 5 and 7 are also taken from stories shared by staff in two of our schools.

In addition to highlighting our Board’s focus on deep learning in this global education book, our Communications Department continues to produce videos highlighting examples of the positive focus of deep learning in our schools. Learning Partnerships are one of the four key elements of the Deep Learning Framework.


Learning Partnerships at the OCSB

Featured video

Culturally Responsive and Relevant Pedagogy

Stephen McCabe, Superintendent of Leading and Learning

Since 2014, the OCSB has implemented multiple initiatives connecting Culturally Responsive and Relevant Pedagogy (CRRP) with educators in our schools. As this work deepens, we continue to build capacity in our schools where students not only learn about diversity but also experience it. We continue to endeavour to create a learning environment which prioritize the mental wellbeing, achievement and equity for students and staff.

Julie Mathé, Principal at Frank Ryan Intermediate School and Anne Chiarelli, Educational Consultant with the Leading & Learning Department, co-chair the Board’s Equity Committee and have participated in the Ministry of Education’s professional development CRRP sessions. Julie and Ann will be leading professional development for OCSB teachers in the coming months. View the presentation.

“Culturally responsive and relevant pedagogy’ recognizes that all students learn in ways that are connected to background, language, family structure and social or cultural identity.”

Ministry of Education 2017

News from the Boardroom Summary (January 23, 2018)

This blog post covers the following topics:

  • St. Pius X Oaks Residence project helps raise awareness
  • Arrival and settlement of Syrian refugees in Ottawa
  • Culturally Responsive and Relevant Pedagogy (CRRP)
  • Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World
  • OCSTA resolution
  • Revised procedural by-laws
  • OSTA update
  • Trustee expenditures

Briefs from the Boardroom


OCSTA resolution

The Board approved a resolution to be considered at the 2018 OCSTA AGM regarding increased funding to programs that support students on long term suspension, expulsions, and exclusions.


Revised procedural by-laws

The Board approved a revised Procedural By-Law 3.01 and 3.02: Regular Board Meetings (March Break) and By-Law 2.06: Order of Business for the Inaugural or Annual Meeting.


OSTA update

David Leach, Superintendent of Finance and Administration presented an update on the progress of the Ottawa Student Transportation Authority (OSTA) towards its goals and objectives.


Trustee expenditures

The Board received a report on the Trustees’ Conference and Convention Expenditures for the period of September 1, 2016 to August 31, 2017.

Arrival and settlement of Syrian refugees in Ottawa

Ben Vallati, Superintendent of Continuing and Community Education

From November 2015 to late 2016, Ottawa welcomed more than 2,000 refugees. The Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership (OLIP) conducted research to examine the successes and challenges of the community response to the influx of Syrian refugees. Manager of Continuing and Community Education, Marianne Kayed, presented the OLIP report summary along with the contributions of herself and OCSB staff. Read more about the OLIP research initiative.

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