Some Ontario Catholic boards already run full-day kindergarten

{mosimage}TORONTO - Full-day kindergarten is an investment in the future and a “courageous” decision during a time of economic downturn, says the head of the Catholic teachers' union.

But it's also not unfamiliar to Catholic schools, James Ryan told The Catholic Register, given that eight Catholic boards have some form of full-day kindergarten.

Catholic educators must stand up for rights

{mosimage}MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - Catholic schools need to fight for and preserve their “Catholicity” in a social and political climate that is becoming increasingly hostile to publicly funded Catholic education, say some educators.

John Kostoff, Dufferin Peel Catholic District School Board’s director of education, says Catholic educators need to “take a step back” and re-assess their goals and identity.

Toronto Catholic board won’t expand single-gender schools

{mosimage}TORONTO - In the wake of calls to open all-boys schools by the Toronto public system, the Toronto Catholic District School Board said it has no plans to follow suit.

There are four all-boys schools in the Toronto Catholic school board right now, one — St. Michael’s Choir School — which is open to elementary school-age children.

Toronto Catholic school board shut put surplus back into schools

{mosimage}TORONTO - Fixing up schools, having more special education teachers and fully restoring the controversial Arrowsmith program should be some of the projects funded by the projected budget surplus of the Toronto Catholic District School Board, say education groups.

Murielle Boudreau, chair of the Greater Toronto Catholic Parent Network, says the board is falling behind in its maintenance of schools.

Benemerenti Medal goes to Ottawa educator

{mosimage}Over the seven years he’s been Ottawa District Catholic School Board ’s education director, James McCracken says what’s been most rewarding has been being able to help students in need.

This year, Pope Benedict XVI has awarded McCracken the Benemerenti Medal for distinguished service to Catholic education in the Ottawa archdiocese. Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, S.J., presented the award on Oct. 9 in front of the board’s more than 3,000 teachers, administrators and support staff.

Pro-life disruptions start early at McGill campus

{mosimage}Jose Ruba, from the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical reform, says McGill University should be ashamed of students who interrupted a presentation he was invited to give on campus.

Ruba, a defender of the pro-life view, was invited by a university sanctioned club, Choose Life, to present “Echoes of the Holocaust” Oct. 6, only to be interrupted for nearly a full two hours by hecklers who shouted and chanted songs like “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.”

Bringing light to Poland's Holocaust past

{mosimage}TORONTO - During the early 1980s, in her teen years, Sr. Anna Bodzinska began to learn that history in Poland wasn’t told quite the way it happened. 

The extent of the atrocities of the Second World War, the treatment of Jews in Poland and Christian-Jewish relations were suppressed to suit the communist ideology of the day. But now Canadians will get to hear from Bodzinska about the initiatives for restoration and understanding taking place today.

Kielburgers to speak on their lives in service

{mosimage}TORONTO - Children’s rights activist Marc Kielburger says being a graduate of the Catholic education system has taught him about the importance of leadership and helped him in advocating for human rights around the world.

Kielburger and his brother, Craig, will join Salt + Light TV CEO Fr. Thomas Rosica, C.S.B., as keynote speakers at the Catholic Curriculum Corporation’s When Faith Meets Pedagogy XIV conference Oct. 22 to 24 at Mississauga’s DoubleTree Hilton.

Fr. Hayes honoured with St. Jerome’s Sweeney award

{mosimage}WATERLOO, Ont. - To St. Jerome’s University President Fr. David Perrin, it was no surprise that an award dinner in honour of Fr. Bernie Hayes drew a sell-out crowd.

“Fr. Bernie has touched countless lives and hearts in this community,” said Perrin in presenting Hayes with the 2009 Chancellor John Sweeney Award for Leadership in Catholic University Education.

Gun violence spurs teacher to action

{mosimage}With three of his former students struck down by gun violence, teaching veteran James Flaherty says he was driven to try to make a difference.

The graphics and technology teacher has been at Malton, Ont.’s Ascension of Our Lord High School for 15 years and has used his film-making skills to try to make that difference.

Bill could limit Catholic school trustees' powers

{mosimage}TORONTO  - The Ontario government’s proposed bill on student accountability would diminish the powers of democratically elected school trustees, says the president of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association.

Paula Peroni told The Catholic Register that if passed in the Ontario legislature, Bill 177 would increase the provincial government’s control over school boards.