Why Review the Northern Initiative?

York Catholic District School Board has a new Multi Year Strategic Plan that sets priorities, provides direction, and calls for program reviews to position us for continued success as one of the top-performing school boards in Ontario.

It includes a Mission statement and identifies Core Values and Strategic Commitments. It also introduces a Vision Statement that responds to the realities of learning, working and living in the 21st century:

“Our students will become creative and critical thinkers who integrate Catholic Values into their daily lives, as socially responsible global citizens”.

This review will assess the impact of the Northern Initiative in relation to our Board’s Mission and the pursuit of the Vision we have for our students in Georgina.

A review of the Northern Initiative is also necessary and timely given the following:

  • The model has been in place since 2002.  This marks the first formal review.
  • In the years since 2002-2003, there have been many changes to Georgina’s demographics and population. Significant growth and shifts are projected to continue in the years to come.
  • The entire K-12 curriculum has been reviewed and revised since 2002-2003. Inquiry and critical thinking are now at the heart of learning in all subject areas. Schools are adjusting and adapting in their pursuit of continuous improvement.
  • It has never been more important – and more challenging – for students to make successful transitions to life after high school. We need to help them develop healthy “habits of mind” that promote reflection, balance, resilience and well-being.
  • The power and potential of technology to enrich teaching and learning has never been greater. The advent of new technologies and devices is radically, quickly, and constantly changing the educational landscape. We need to ensure that learning goals are driving technology-related decisions and uses.
  • YCDSB has developed a new framework (i.e., the 6Cs) to help define teaching and learning in 21st century classrooms. From K-12, students will develop Critical thinking and problem solving, Creativity and innovation, Collaboration and Communication. They do so to develop a distinctly Catholic Character that guides and inform Catholic, global Citizenship.

Given these developments, we need to ensure that our resources are allocated and aligned to achieve the best possible outcomes for the Georgina community.