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St. Benedict helps unveil Black Raven Park

Brenda Wilson, Superintendent of Learning Technologies

Black Raven Park near St. Benedict School in Barrhaven was officially has been officially unveiled! The park was named in honour of the school mascot and was a community collaboration with the local builder, Mattamy Homes.

The opening event in October 2018 included a ribbon cutting by Councillor Jan Harder, and a speech by Mayor Jim Watson, who spoke to the crowd about the unique partnership and the great idea of naming the park after the school mascot. The school was able to expand on the ideas surrounding flexible learning environments, outdoor classrooms, and deep learning tasks during the ceremony — a wonderful example of the strategic commitment Be Community. View the presentation.

Student Trustees’ Board Report highlights

Ben Vallati, Superintendent of Continuing and Community Education
Nate Waddell and Caleb Reid, Student Trustees Photo os Caleb ReidPhoto of Nate Waddell

Student Trustees, Nate Waddell and Caleb Reid, presented their first of two Student Trustee reports to the Board on January 8, 2019. Student Trustees bring student voice to the Board of Trustees including input from the Student Senate which is made up of student council co-presidents/head boys and head girls. Caleb and Nate have had many opportunities to represent our Board at events this fall and exemplify our strategic commitments of Be Community, Be Well, Be Innovative. View the full presentation.

Highlights include:

  • speaking to the issue of poverty on Parliament Hill on National Child Day
  • supporting student councils as they plan events with School Priority Funds
  • attending OSTA Fall regional meeting, Archbishop’s charity dinner, and We Day
  • witnessing and supporting events at schools where Catholic values are reflected through dedication to hard work and social justice projects

Overview of Learning Disabilities (LD) profile

Manon Séguin, Superintendent of Special Education and Student Services

Learning Disabilities (LD) refers to a variety of disorders that affect the acquisition, retention, understanding, organization, or use of information. Dr. Laurinda Cudmore, Chief Psychologist, and Joan Barry, Principal of Special Education and Student Services, provided an overview of the LD profile and the interventions and programming in place to support students diagnosed with this profile. The focus this year is on a Grade 1 literacy initiative being piloted in schools as well as a myriad of school interventions and professional learning initiatives outlined in this presentation.

Leading the way in energy management

Fred Chrystal, Superintendent of Planning and Facilities

The success of our Energy Management Plan is attributable to the collective effort of all staff and students across the Board and the creation of an energy conservation culture to achieve common goals in a collegial and collaborative manner. Our faith communities help encourage a culture shift that supports planet-friendly behaviour to ensure a sustainable future. Our energy management plan and related initiatives together with a whole school approach makes a substantial contribution to our Strategic Commitment to Be Community, Be Well and Be Innovative across all dimensions of the Board’s operations. We are proud to be a local and provincial leader in energy management and conservation. View pages 61-64 in the Board agenda.

Photo (from left to right): Maureen Dufour, Chaplaincy Leader ; Michelle Gauthier, Vice-Principal; Alison Strucchelli, Vice-Principal; Naomi Badour, student; Katherine Pham, student; Mark D. Mullan, Chairperson; and Shelley Montgomery, Superintendent  of Leading and Learning.

Annual Peace Conference focus on immigrants and refugees

Shelley Montgomery, Superintendent of Leading and Learning

The 22nd Annual Peace and Justice Conference took place in November 2018 with a focus on challenges for immigrants and refugees. High school students gathered to develop learning partnerships with Development and Peace/Caritas Canada. During the conference, students designed a social justice project to take back to their school. Maureen Dufour, Chaplaincy Leader at St. Paul High School, and Michelle Gauthier, Vice-Principal at St. Peter High School, shared some highlights from the conference. View the presentation.

Meaningful Advent season activities

Shelley Montgomery, Superintendent of Leading and Learning

The Board received a presentation on the different ways in which our schools celebrated the Advent season. Advent projects included gifts for single moms/children and the homeless, distribution of personal care items, clothing drives, Christmas hamper projects, and dozens of other outreach projects. With a focus on liturgies, masses, and learning about the Jesse Tree, each school went on a journey to understand the meaning of Advent. Maria Sloan and her Grade 6 class arranged for students and their siblings to have their Christmas portrait done in front of a hand-painted backdrop as gifts for their parents (as in photo, right) — a Canadian Christmas tradition new to most new Canadian families at St. Rose of Lima. View the presentation.

January 8, 2019 Boardroom Summary

This January 8, 2019 blog post covers the following topics:


  • Opening St. Benedict’s Black Raven Park
  • Student Trustees’ Board Report highlights
  • Overview of Learning Disabilities (LD) profile
  • Leading the way in energy management
  • Annual Peace Conference focus on immigrants and refugees
  • Meaningful Advent season activities
  • SEAC representatives 2018-2022

Briefs from the Boardroom

SEAC representatives 2018-2022

Manon Séguin, Superintendent of Special Education and Student Services

The Board approved the following persons to represent their associations and/or the community-at-large for the 2018-2022 meetings of the statutory Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC).


  • Helen McRobbie – VIEWS for the Visually Impaired
  • John Johnson – Brain Injury Association of Ottawa-Carleton
  • Natasha Ell Saunders – Autism Ontario Ottawa Chapter
  • Heather Rose – Learning Disabilities Association of Ottawa-Carleton
  • Charlene White – Downs Syndrome Association
  • Traci Clarke – Community Member at Large
  • Susan Muleme Kasumba – Community Member at Large
  • Kim Peterson – Community Member at Large
  • Scott Campbell – VIEWS for the Visually Impaired (alternate)

David Leach, Superintendent of Finance and Administration, has retired after 30 years of dedicated service. The Board of Trustees honored David’s commitment and notable contributions to the success of the Board’s stewardship of resources. View our Superintendents webpage for information regarding this portfolio.

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