Year End Message From Director of Education, Patricia Preston

What a fantastic year it has been! As we prepare for the summer holidays, I look back at the 2014-2015 school year with pride and gratitude for all of the success our students and staff have achieved.  York Catholic is consistently one of the top-performing school boards in the province, and I am certain that we will continue to shine as a leader in Catholic Education thanks to the cooperation and collaboration of our many stakeholders. I thank our teachers, administrators, support staff, trustees, parents, parishes and community partners for all of their hard work, support and the many contributions they have made this year.

This spring, the Ministry of Education published graduation rates for each Ontario school board. The York Catholic District School Board achieved the highest four and five-year graduation rate of all English language school boards in the province!  Thank you to our teachers and support staff who helped our students discover and develop their unique skills and talents, and inspired them to complete their education.

This month, the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority named YCDSB the Top Energy Performing School Board in Ontario. We achieved this special distinction thanks to our daily energy conservation practices, including our innovative energy systems, environmental stewardship, and overall motivation to be environmentally conscious in all that we do. Our EcoSchools’ student teams and those who support them, are to be commended for their leadership, enthusiasm and efforts to make our schools and communities environmentally sustainable.

Our communities continue to be inspired by the Catholic teachings of social justice and charity. Our schools and CEC staff fundraised for ShareLife and Nepal Humanitarian Relief, among other great causes. I am pleased to report that we have collected $66,588.57 for ShareLife and $69,829.94 for Nepal Humanitarian Relief efforts.  Thank you for supporting this work, and making this an exceptional year of giving.

This past fall, our Board launched its new Multi-Year Strategic Plan (MYSP), which included new mission and vision statements for our Board. It also highlighted our core values and outlined our commitments for the next three years. Since its launch, the MYSP has guided our Board in all that we do, and it will continue to inform our Board Improvement Plan for Student Achievement, School Improvement Plans, and all of our departmental operational plans.

Catholic Education is truly a gift that remains with our students throughout their lives. I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to our high school graduates who are leaving us. May God bless you and guide you always.

To those staff members who are retiring at the end of this month, your dedication and service to York Catholic will not be forgotten. May you have a healthy and happy retirement with continued success during the next stage of your lives.

To our staff, parents, guardians and students, best wishes to you and your loved ones for a safe and blessed summer filled with rest, relaxation and the opportunity to make many happy memories!

Yours in Catholic education,

Patricia Preston
Director of Education
York Catholic District School Board

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