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Building community and enhancing wellness at Immaculata

Immaculata High School hosted its first annual Girls Day Out for Wellness on November 30, 2019. All female students in Grades 7 & 8 were invited to participate in various activities to come together to “Be Community” and “Be Well” physically, mentally and spiritually. Our day of wellness began with senior students and recent graduates sharing their insights about getting involved in the school community in order to thrive at Immaculata. We thank these young ladies for sharing their personal experiences not only about their successes but also their hardships. They taught us that struggles can help us become stronger and more resilient!

Lynne Charette of St. Benedict School named one of Canada’s Outstanding Principals

The Learning Partnership has recognized our very own, Lynne Charette, Principal of St. Benedict School, as one of Canada’s Outstanding Principals for 2019. Lynne is among 30 exceptional Canadian educators who are being celebrated by The Learning Partnership for demonstrating innovation, having an entrepreneurial spirit and for employing creativity in finding solutions and opportunities.

Lynne began her career as a teacher with the OCSB in 1984. During her 35 years with the OCSB, she has served as a classroom teacher, resource teacher, system special education consultant, vice-principal, and principal. Lynne was selected two years ago to open the OCSB’s new elementary school, St. Benedict. Lynne opened the school as a model that fully embraced deep learning. Her opening inquiry with her staff was “what is the difference that makes the difference for each child”?

Making Things Happen: Autism Awareness Month

October is Autism Awareness and Acceptance Month in Canada. It is a great opportunity to learn more about autism, raise awareness, and raise acceptance in our schools, workplace, and community. Please enjoy this short, 5-minute video entitled: Amazing Things Happen, created by Alex Amelines (independent animation director). The aim is to raise autism awareness among young audiences who do not have autism as well as to encourage understanding and acceptance in future generations.

Future Ready! OCSB students demonstrate their skills on the national stage

This year, 35 students from the Ottawa Catholic School Board had the exciting experience of competing in the 2018 Skills Ontario Competition in Toronto. Supported by their proud teachers, these students were challenged to put their skilled trades and technology skills to use as they were presented with timed challenges that pushed their abilities to the limit.

Among these 35 dedicated students were Christopher Hearty and Heejo Suh from St. Mother Teresa High School. They were given a small time window to create a complex 3D character animation, utilizing skills they learned in Mario Francoeur’s technology class. With their versatile skill set in sketch modelling, animatics, character rigging, time management, and teamwork, they were able to take home a gold medal and move onto the Skills Canada National Competition.

Students and staff embark on day of service

The OCSB community was hard at work during Catholic Education Week this year, as schools embraced opportunities to serve others. Over 1,000 students and 30 staff members from St. Mark High School participated in their annual “Massive Day of Service.” Students were rewarded with a great sense of pride while making sandwiches and collecting toiletries for the Shepherds of Good Hope and the Ottawa Mission. Others reached out to help the elderly in their community with yard work, or just to pay a warm visit.

Staff from St. Patrick’s High School wrapped up their Catholic Education Week by preparing and serving lunch for over 300 of Ottawa’s homeless population at the Shepherds of Good Hope. After chopping, peeling, and arranging, the staff had a prayer service led by their chaplaincy leader, Dr. Joe Rogers. Following prayer, the crew worked the front serving lines, loaded the dishwashers and took care of the cleaning.

The greater community thanks these selfless students and staff for taking the time to make a difference in the lives of their neighbours in the spirit of Catholic Education Week.

OCSB schools named top Terry Fox fundraisers

The Terry Fox Foundation has announced that three OCSB schools have placed in the “Top 50 Fundraisers of 2017” listing. These three schools, as well as the many other OCSB schools who raise funds for this worthy cause, are playing an important role in funding innovative cancer research by supporting the brightest researchers in Canada who are dedicated to a wide spectrum of projects including lung, brain, pancreatic, and children’s cancers. Congratulations Holy Trinity Catholic High School (#4), Immaculata High School (#8), and St. Pius X High School (#13).

Mourning the loss of Trustee Kathy Ablett

The Ottawa Catholic School Board  is saddened by the passing of Trustee Kathy Ablett, R.N. on Saturday, May 12. The Board of Trustees and OCSB staff extend sincere condolences to Trustee Ablett’s family and friends. Trustee Ablett represented River/Capital (Zone 9) and was involved in Catholic education her entire life. Over the past 27 years as Trustee, she has demonstrated accountability, accessibility, and a true commitment to the success of all students, making significant contributions to the environment of servant leadership within the OCSB.

The OCSB’s 5th Annual Keep the Promise Summit

In 1989, all three federal government parties promised to end child poverty by the year 2000. Today in Ottawa, 1 in 5 children live in poverty. This is unacceptable! After the Keep the Promise (KTP) National Summit in November 2014, I was so impacted by the commitment, determination and passion of young people that I felt compelled to keep this conversation going. With 20 Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB) retiree volunteers ready, and the OCSB committed to host, the conversation continued … with some 50 schools and 250 students participating.

St. Patrick’s High School participates in Memory Project

During Catholic Education Week at the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB), we get to see and experience the beauty and vibrancy of OCSB student talent through various events and activities across the city. I recently had the opportunity to hear about a heartwarming project from St. Patrick’s High School‘s art club. Here are the highlights of my conversation with OCSB Student Success Arts Consultant Katie Lewis-Prieur and St. Patrick’s High School’s Arts Department Head Mirella Frost.

Mirella: “I first heard about The Memory Project from my niece who studies art at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. Her art class participated in it, and I thought it would be so rewarding, so I decided to propose it to my Art Club. The Memory Project is a non-profit organization that sends hand-drawn portraits to children living in refugee camps in Syria. Seeing as most of the students had studied portraiture with me in the past, they were so excited to participate.”