Cup fever for Catholic schools

By  Sara Loftson, The Catholic Register
  • February 12, 2007
CFLTORONTO - Students within the Toronto Catholic District School Board will be learning more about the history of the Canadian Football League through a program in conjunction with the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.
Former Toronto Argonauts will visit seven Catholic schools this year. Each month a new school will set up “The History of the Grey Cup,” a bilingual pop-up display geared at Kindergarten to Grade 8 students. 

About 50,000 students from southern Ontario have participated in the Football Month  program since 2002.

“We developed it as an outreach program so we could reach more students and teach them about Canadian football,” said Janice Smith, managing director of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame and Museum in Hamilton, Ont.  

The Hall of Fame sponsors the program in Toronto with the Toronto Argonauts Alumni Association and the Toronto Catholic District School Board.  

Three years ago several schools in the Toronto Catholic board hosted the program as a pilot project. Now it’s back just in time to promote the Grey Cup, the league’s championship game, which returns to Toronto this November.   

“Since Toronto is hosting the Grey Cup for the first time in 15 years we wanted to bring it to Toronto schools,” said Smith.

Each month a new school will host Football Month starting in February with Holy Angels, to be followed by programs at St. Maurice, St. Gregory, Nativity of Our Lord, St. Gerard Majella, St. Michael and Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

The Hall of Fame provides math, science, language and history related questions for students to answer when they bring the program to the schools.

Some of the questions include “What is the Grey Cup?”; “The Edmonton Eskimos won the Grey Cup five years in a row, name those five years”; and “If a quarter back throws a 23-yard pass from the 11-yard line at which yard line would it be caught?”

At the end of the month a former Argonaut will visit the participating school to give a motivational speech while the Grey Cup trophy is displayed. Each student will get a complimentary admission to the Hall of Fame.

“Our experience has shown that the students learn a great deal about the Grey Cup and Canadian football,” said Smith. “It’s to encourage the students to learn more about Canadian football and be a part of this great Canadian tradition.”

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