Welcome to April! It’s another busy and fantastic month here at Niagara Catholic.
Read on to find out some of the events and activities taking place across Niagara Catholic this month.
On Friday, April 1, the 13th Annual Bishop’s Gala will take place at Club Roma in St. Catharines. This is a signature event every year, and raises money for the Niagara Foundation for Catholic Education.
Notre Dame College School will showcase You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, April 14-17 at the school’s Leon Theatre. Call 905.788.3060 for tickets.
On April 11, Niagara Catholic will celebrate the many volunteers who add so much to our schools and classrooms during the annual Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast at the Holiday Inn and Suites in St. Catharines. We are grateful for the ways in which parents, grandparents and community volunteers enrich the lives of our students through the generous donation of their time and talents, and this is a small token of our appreciation.
Niagara Catholic will host a Spring ELKP Open House at all of our Catholic elementary schools on April 19 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and #AllAreWelcome! If you have not yet registered your child for Kindergarten, or know someone who has a child entering Kindergarten this year, this is the perfect opportunity to stop by the school, see the classrooms in action, and register for school. To complete registration, please bring your child’s birth certificate, baptism record, Ontario Health Card, proof of immunization and proof of address.
Earth Day is Friday, April 22. Our students and staff will be out in their communities on Earth Day and throughout Earth Week participating in a variety of civic and schoolyard cleanup events. And don’t forget our Recycle Your Electronics event at the Catholic Education on April 18-22. If you have unwanted electronic items, drop them off in the large bin in front of the Catholic Education Centre at 427 Rice Road in Welland for safe disposal.
For the past year, Niagara Catholic staff and committed volunteers have been working on the first-ever Niagara Catholic Education Congress, which will focus on the topic of Catholic education in Niagara. The first Congress will take place at Blessed Trinity Catholic Secondary School on Monday, April 25 at 6:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend this event, which is being facilitated by Father Thomas Rosica from Salt + Light Media. Three more events will take place at schools during Catholic Education Week in May. This year-long conversation on Catholic education will continue throughout the year, and will culminate in a day-long event held during Catholic Education Week in 2017.
Lakeshore Catholic High School will present the John Hughes classic The Breakfast Club in the school’s Performing Arts Centre April 28-30. Call 905.834.2451 for tickets.
The mission of the Diocese of St. Catharines is founded in the mission of Jesus Christ. In the Gospel of St. John, Jesus states that He came down from heaven, "not to do my own will, but the will of him who sent me." (Jn6:38) Jesus' mission is doing the will of his Father. This is the will of the Father, "that all who see the Son and believe in him will have eternal life, and I will raise them up on the last day". (Jn 6:40)
The Diocese of St. Catharines' mission is rooted in doing the Father's will by proclaiming His son to the world so that all can know, love and serve Him. This mission is lived out on a daily basis in our parishes, schools and Catholic institutions. We find clergy, religious and laity committed to proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ by witnessing to His truth, justice, love and mercy. St. Catharines Diocese is where faith lives.
Elementary Itinerant Arts Curriculum Delivery and Support Update
Beginning in September 2015, all elementary students began receiving Arts instruction in their classrooms, led by a team of Itinerant Arts teachers.
Students in ELKP through Grade 4 receive dance/drama and vocal music instruction, while students in Grades 5-8 will have instrumental music instruction.
The Itinerant Arts teachers travel in teams of two, with one Dance/Drama/Vocal Music teacher and one Instrumental Music teacher visiting a school on a given day.
To better assist these specialized teachers in delivering engaging and creative instrumental lessons, new instruments were purchased at the start of the school year for schools across the system. Soprano, alto and tenor recorders, ukuleles, bucket drums and guitars are now used by teachers to enable the students to achieve the more complex expectations in the provincial Arts curriculum.
Teachers can then share locally developed lesson plans through Google Apps for Education, and accessed through Smartboard technology. Lesson plans include faith-based music and drama.
Read the complete report in section C3 of the April 12 Committee of the Whole Agenda.
Niagara Catholic 2016-2017 System Priorities
Beginning at the Committee of the Whole Meeting each January, the Director of Education and Senior Administrative Council began providing monthly information reports to Trustees on the Design of the System Priorities and Annual Budget for the upcoming year.
Niagara Catholic continues to build the 2016-2017 Budget to achieve the System Priorities defined for 2016-2017 and meet the legislated requirements of the Education Act, and the Ministry of Education’s Grants for Student Needs (GSN) funding allocations.
At the April 12 Committee of the Whole Meeting, Trustees voted to recommend the 2016-2017 System Priorities. These priorities include to continue to provide Catholic programs, supports and services to build strong Catholic identity and community, improving student achievement, expanding social justice, global citizenship and international education experiences, implementing the next phase of the Technology Blueprint 2016-2020, enriching the engagement of student leadership, designing and delivering a comprehensive multi-year Professional Development Plan, maintining fiscal stability and implementing the first phase of the Board’s Long-Term Accommodation Plan.
Read the full report in Appendix B of Report C6 of the April 12 Committee of the Whole Agenda.
Learn more about Niagara Catholic’s Long-Term Accommodation Plan below.
Phase 3 of Niagara Catholic’s Long-Term Accommodation Plan
Beginning in February, Niagara Catholic Trustees began looking at the Board’s Long-Term Accommodation Plan. Phase 1 was introduced at the February 9 Committee of the Whole Meeting, and approved at the Board Meeting on February 23.
Phase 2 was introduced at the Committee of the Whole Meeting on March 8, and the Board discussed the staffing and property implications associated with data in the report.
Updated information was provided to Trustees during the April 12 Committee of the Whole Meeting, along with the recommendations for schools over the short term (2016-2018), medium term (2018-2020) and long term (beyond 2020).
The report is available in section C5 of the April 12 Committee of the Whole Agenda.
Catch Up With Our Good News!
If you haven’t checked out our Good News section in a while, be sure to take a look at some of the great stories we’ve had to share, including photos from our Bishop’s Gala and Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast. Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo, Instagram and YouTube for more about life across Niagara Catholic
The Niagara Catholic District School Board, through the charisms of faith, social justice, support and leadership, nurtures an enriching Catholic learning community for all to reach their full potential and become living witnesses of Christ.