OCSB Family Welcome Center

The Ottawa Catholic School Board’s Family Welcome Centre is here to help families of all faiths register children from grades 1 through 12 and integrate into the Ottawa community. We are here for you whether you are a new resident in Canada, coming back to Canada after 6 months away, or English is a language your family isn’t comfortable speaking.

Where do I book an appointment with the Family Welcome Center?

Your family will need to meet certain requirements before you can book an appointment to see us at the Family Welcome Center. Once you meet the requirements, you will need to bring documentation to help us process your application.

Requirements for booking an appointment with the Family Welcome Center

You will need to meet one or more of the following requirements before you can book your appointment.

 

  • You are new to Canada – You moved to Canada within the last 6 months.
  • You are new to Ontario – You are a new resident of Ontario from another province and need help getting started.
  • English is not your first language – As a parent, you are not comfortable with the English language and need help navigating the registration process.
  • English is not your child’s first language – Your child’s first language is not English, and they will need help navigating their school career to build on their English proficiency.
  • Your child attended school in another country – Your child attended school outside of Canada for 6 months or more.

Booking your appointment with the Family Welcome Center

You can book your appointment once you or your child meets one or more of the requirements. You can call us Monday through Friday between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm. If you are more comfortable with email, you can also email us anytime. We will respond in a timely manner in the language you prefer to communicate in.

 

Do I need to be Catholic to attend school at the Ottawa Catholic School Board?

Children of all religions are welcome to join the Ottawa Catholic School Board. Our approach to educating your child is inclusive, honouring the dignity of every child and respecting all beliefs, in keeping with our Catholic social teachings.

What do I bring to my appointment at the Family Welcome Center?

We will need you to bring a few documents before your appointment. Please make sure to bring these as we can not help you as best as we can without them.

Mandatory documents for your appointment include the following:

  • Proof of age (your child’s birth certificate or passport)
  • Proof of status in Canada for yourself and your child (Canadian citizenship, permanent resident, work permit, or study permit)
  • Proof of your address in Ottawa (rental or mortgage agreement, utility bill, or bank/credit card statement)

Supplementary documents that can help with your application include:

  • Your child’s official report cards and or transcripts for the last two years
  • Immunization records
  • Your, or your child’s, baptismal certificate (for students in Grades 1 to 8)

What happens during our appointment with the Family Welcome Center?

You and your child will visit us at 570 West Hunt Club Road. Your visit will last about two to three hours. We need you to bring your child as we will be assessing their proficiency in different areas. Here is what a typical appointment looks like.

  1. An Intake and Assessment Teach will meet with your family to discuss your child’s school history, personal goals and general interests.
  2. We take time to assess your child’s spoken, reading and writing skills in both English and math. We do this to learn how best to help them through their school career. This is not a test, so there is no need to prepare.
  3. We provide you with feedback based on the assessments that your family can use to help make decisions about your child’s future. We also make sure to send the assessment report to your child’s new school.
  4. We guide you through the school registration process by helping you complete all the required registration forms. We also set up an appointment at your child’s new school to complete the registration.
  5. We help you integrate into your new community by connecting you with a Multicultural Liason Officer (MLO) through our partnership with the Ottawa Community Immigrant Settlement Organization (OCISO). MLOs help newcomer students and their families establish themselves in the city of Ottawa.

It is our mission to help all newcomers integrate into our school community and the Ottawa community at large. We cannot wait to see all the new faces at our board office.