Wishing everyone a very safe and restful summer!

Here we are…at the end of another school year! And what a tremendous year it was.

I am so grateful that I was able to attend many school-based events and celebrations this past year, recognizing once again, that great things just keep happening across our school communities! We are so fortunate as a school district, with so much to celebrate and acknowledge. Our students and staff are a reflection of the healthy and vibrant partnerships between all members of our Catholic school community.

Please take a moment to watch the video below, highlighting just a few of the wonderful events and activities that took place across our district this past year.

The end of the 2015-2016 school year marks the completion of a cycle for many in our community. Our Grade 8 students have completed the first phase of their education and will be moving on to high school. Many of our secondary school students will be leaving us to embark on post-secondary pathways. And some of our staff will be retiring and moving on in pursuit of new endeavours. During the month of June, we celebrated over 3,309 years of service to our students. Read how our school district honoured 61 staff members who have served the Board for 25 years and the 83 who are retiring from the Board this year.

To the students and staff in our community who are moving on to another stage along their life journey – I wish you continued success and may God keep you safe in His care.

I hope that this time of year afforded by the break from school schedules will provide an opportunity for our students, our families, and our staff to slow down the pace, and enjoy some quality time with friends and loved ones.

Have a wonderful summer!

4th Annual Roots of Empathy Celebration

On Thursday, May 31, 2016, I had the privilege of attending the Halton Catholic District School Board’s fourth annual Roots of Empathy celebration, in partnership with Roots of Empathy, which recognized 33 volunteer families in our community.

Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that significantly raises the social and emotional competence of elementary children, while also increasing their feelings of empathy. Once every month, a parent and their infant will visit a classroom, and will work with a trained instructor who will coach the students to observe the baby’s development and overall feelings.

This year’s celebration included presentations and a slideshow of the programs available, accompanied by many heartwarming messages from students about what they learned in Roots of Empathy.

Thank you to all of our volunteer families, students, and staff who contributed their time and efforts to this program. I invite you to watch the fourth annual Roots of Empathy celebration on our YouTube channel below!

A Truly Remarkable Film, “The Vanier Way”

It was both an honour and a privilege to be invited to the debut of the documenVanier plaque 1tary film, The Vanier Way on Tuesday, February 23, 2016.

In the Spring of 2015, 10 students from Jean Vanier Catholic Secondary School in Milton, Ontario were able to meet their school’s namesake, Catholic philosopher, humanitarian and L’Arche community Founder, Jean Vanier in Trosly, France. Jean Vanier founded L’Arche in 1964, an international federation of communities spread over 35 countries, for people with developmental disabilities and those who assist them. Continue reading

Welcome Back to the New School Year!

iStock_000006261763_FullAs the summer winds down and we embark upon the Labour Day weekend, I’d like to extend a warm welcome to our students, our families, faculty and staff! I
hope you had a relaxing and enjoyable summer, and are well rested and ready for the new school year ahead.

 

Here are some updates to let you know what’s in store for the beginning of the school year:

  • A handy ‘at your fingertips’ calendar, providing important dates and information about your child’s school and school district will be available to parents at their home school, and on our website.
  • Our Board will be accepting new student registrations for the 2015-2016 school year. Check out our new School Finder Tool – simply type in your home address, and find out where your home school is, as well as the various programs that are available for your child.
  • As part of the Board’s long-term needs, we have begun planning for the development of our next multi-year plan, which will address our system goals and priorities, beyond 2015. With a focus on Achieving, Believing, and Belonging, we continue to strengthen and place emphasis on Belonging in our Catholic community. We will be reaching out to our parents and ratepayers this month, to provide us with their feedback through consultations. We are happy to hear from you, and your ongoing feedback and suggestions are always welcome!

While we continue to provide our students with the tools and support for realizing their fullest potential, I want to acknowledge the integral role that our parents, staff, and parishes play in the continued success of our entire school district. To our students, staff, and members of our Catholic school communities, I wish you all the best for a wonderful new school year. I look forward to attending many school-based events and celebrations – reaffirming that great things just keep happening across HCDSB!

Paula