Spotlight January 15

Header for SpotlightJanuary 15, 2019

Holy Childhood Association

Niagara Catholic has had a relationship with the Holy Childhood Association since 1984.

In the 34 years since elementary student first walked to support children in parts of the developing world such as Uganda, Nigeria, Haiti, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, the Board has raised more than 688,000 for the Association.

In October and November, 39 Catholic elementary schools participated in Holy Childhood Association walks, raising nearly $12,100 for programs run by the Association.

2018-2019 Parents Reaching Out Grants

Twenty-two Niagara Catholic schools have been award Parents Reaching Out (PRO) grants to support parent engagement as partners in their child’s education, strengthening their connection with the school, the Board and their parish.

In addition, the Ministry of Education approved $9,500 for a Niagara Catholic PRO grant project, Learning Together – a Shared Responsibility, to facilitate increased participation by First Nation, Metis and Inuit parents in the education of their children.

Capital Projects – Progress Update

Progress continues on Niagara Catholic’s two capital projects – a three-room childcare addition to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Elementary School, and the consolidation of St. Charles and Monsignor Clancy Catholic Elementary Schools at the Monsignor Clancy site.

Design work is under way for the $1.5 million 5,317 square-foot addition to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, which will provide 49 childcare spaces at the school when construction is completed in the fall of 2019.

Design work is also in progress for the $5-million project to consolidate St. Charles and  Monsignor Clancy Catholic Elementary Schools, which also includes a 49-place childcare centre. When the addition is completed, there will be space for 677 students, an increase of 104 students over current capacity.

Students are expected to begin classes at the consolidated school in the fall of 2020.

Trustees Receive an Overview on Niagara Catholic International Education Program

MOUDirector of Education John Crocco (left), and Mr. David Li, General Principal of Schools, signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the Soochow Foreign Language School in China and Niagara Catholic at the Catholic Education Centre on December 11, 2018.

During the January 15 Committee of the Whole Meeting, trustees were given an overview of the importance of the Board’s International Education program.

Niagara Catholic’s first international students arrived in the area from Valencia, Venezuela in 2001. The presence of international students in our schools brings immeasurable benefits to our learning community, contributes to our own learning community, and to the promotional of global competencies in our elementary and secondary students and staff.

Since that first group arrived nearly 18 years ago, Niagara Catholic has hosted nearly 5,000 students from Colombia, Peru, Panama, Mexico, Spain, France, Italy, China, Thailand and South Korea. These self-sustaining programs have generated approximately $11 million in revenue, with about 35 per cent of this being surplus fund which support other programs.

In December, Niagara Catholic signed a new partnership with the Suzhou Education Group’s Soochow Foreign Language School outside Shanghai, and other partnerships are in the works in Brazil, Colombia and France. The complete report is available in Section C2 of the January 15 Committee of the Whole agenda.


Trustees Recommend a Joint-Use School with DSBN in Wainfleet to Board

A joint-use school elementary school in Wainfleet is one step closer to reality.

At the January 15 Committee of the Whole Meeting, trustees recommended the Board approve a joint-use school in the southwestern Niagara rural community, replacing St. Elizabeth Catholic Elementary School, and two elementary schools run by the District School Board of Niagara.

The recommendation followed a lengthy public consultation process and discussions with our stakeholders, including our co-terminus board.

The complete report can be found in section C3 of the January 15 Committee of the Whole agenda.

Student Trustees Share Ontario Catholic Student Leadership Success with Board


Niagara Catholic student senators with Joe Melendrez.

The Ontario Catholic Leadership Conference, Limitless, which brought together more than 300 Catholic secondary school leaders to Niagara for a three-day event focused on the message from the Gospel of John the notion of living abundantly (John 10:10).

During the January 15 Committee of the Whole Meeting, student trustees Jade Bilodeau and Madison McKinney shared a recap of the event with the Board.

A committee of Niagara Catholic staff, including the Board Chaplaincy leader, Notre Dame College School Principal Ken Griepsma, Diocesan representatives and current and former student trustees, organized the event. It featured keynote speaker and performer Joe Melendrez, a Catholic teacher, hip-hop artist and rapper, whose high-energy speeches and performances were the highlight of the conference.

Students participated in a number of sessions focused on mental health, Taize prayer, leading humbly and awakening Indigenous culture with art. The conference concluded with a Mass at St. Thomas More Parish for a Mass with Bishop Bergie, which included members of our Elementary Student Senate as they began their Lead Out Loud student conference.

Keep up with Niagara Catholic

Have you checked our Good News page lately? If you’re not, you could be missing some great stories. Hop on over to see what’s new at Niagara Catholic, including photos from our annual Baby Day celebration, and good news about two of our schools in the OCSTA’s annual short video competition.

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