The York Catholic District School Board Welcomes Students Back to School

The York Catholic District School Board is happy to welcome over 55,000 students, in Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12, back to school this September. Elementary school students started classes on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. High school students and students in Grades 8-12 at Our Lady of the Lake Catholic College School in Keswick, will begin classes on Wednesday, September 3.

A Grade Nine Orientation Day called “Getting Ready for High School” is being piloted for all York Catholic District School Board high schools on September 2, 2014. The program has been adapted for Grade 7 students entering Our Lady of the Lake CCS. This new orientation day aims to help students transition to high school. During the full day of orientation, students will participate in a Liturgical celebration, and will be led through a series of literacy, numeracy and physical education activities. The day will also expose students to a shortened classroom timetabled setting where materials for courses will be distributed. Students will meet with teachers, support staff, and student leaders, as well as, explore their new surroundings, before classes officially begin the following day.

“We know there are a lot of new protocols and procedures for students to learn on their first day of high school,” says Elizabeth Crowe, Chair of the Board. “We want to ensure that grade nine students feel welcome, safe and secure and begin to develop a sense of belonging in their new surroundings.”

The York Catholic District School Board continues to invest in its commitment to the ongoing improvement of its schools. This year, students will move into new schools at Guardian Angels CES in Woodbridge and St. Joseph in Markham. The schools will include a number of wonderful amenities for students including a reflection room, music room as well as new technologies to enhance teaching and learning.

The Board also continues its expansion of the French Immersion Program. St. John XXIII CES in Unionville, St. Francis Xavier CES in Markham and St. Joseph the Worker CES in Thornhill will introduce the French Immersion Program this school year. This brings the total number of schools offering the program to 12.

At the secondary level, a Health and Wellness Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) program will be introduced at Holy Cross Catholic Academy in Woodbridge. SHSM programs help students focus on a particular career path that matches their skills and interests, while earning their high school diploma. For the 2014-15 school year, the York Catholic District School Board will offer 19 SHSM programs in various sectors including: Arts and Culture, Business, Health and Wellness, Information and Communication Technology, Manufacturing, Transportation, and Sports.

Also at the secondary level, the York Catholic District School Board continues to expand its e-Learning program to meet the diverse needs and learning styles of all students. This year, the Board will offer 18 e-Courses as part of its day-school program, including courses in the sciences, mathematics, English, Canadian and world studies, and international languages. e-Courses help students develop online learning and communication skills, provide flexibility for students, enable access 24/7, and help to meet their pathways needs.

Construction of 25 new Solar Photovoltaic Systems will occur at 25 schools during this school year. These systems will be used to convert sunlight into electricity and are aligned with the Board’s efforts around environmental stewardship and sustainability.

The York Catholic District School Board delivers quality educational programming to over 55,000 students in 104 schools throughout the Regional Municipality of York. Follow us on Twitter @YCDSB.