AjaTORONTO - With the dawn of the era of all-day Kindergarten for children three-and-a-half to six years old, Ontario will begin to see how much difference an early introduction to formal learning can make in the life of a child.

The program will begin in fewer than 600 schools province-wide when the school year dawns following Labour Day, but should be available in all elementary schools by 2015-2016. By September 2011 up to 50,000 pupils will be enrolled in upwards of 800 schools.
tcdsb logoA Catholic high school leadership and peer support course is being offered this August and will earn participating students a high school credit.

The course, which will be taught by Bishop Marrocco/Thomas Merton Secondary School teacher Steve DeQuintal, will take place at St. Sebastian’s Church, 20 Pauline Ave.
St. Patrick SchoolAnother Toronto Catholic school is now slated to become an arts, media and technological school through new programming to begin in fall of 2011.

St. Patrick Catholic Secondary School in Toronto’s east end was selected for a Grades 9-12 arts, media and technologies centre after a review of five city schools including Cardinal Newman, Jean Vanier, Neil McNeil, Notre Dame and St. Patrick’s.
Grade 6 student Aiden McCarthy goes over the edge, rappelling down De La Salle College’s two-story library. McCarthy’s mother said he was nervous, but that she wanted him to take risks. (Photo by Sheila Dabu)TORONTO - Not many 11 year olds are encouraged to dangle from a rope down the side of their school. But being a member of the De La Salle College Cadets means Aidan McCarthy is not your average school kid.

He is one of 12 students — 11 boys and one girl — who are part of the De La Salle (Oaklands) Cadet Corps program. Now in its 100th year, the program is one of the few remaining — if not the only — Catholic cadet corps in Canada. It is part of a century-old tradition of training leaders at the private Catholic school for Grade 5-to-12 students run by the De La Salle Brothers.
Art teacher Patrizia Montefiore is joined by students who helped build a mosaic of their school’s patron saint, St. Francis of Assisi, at James Cardinal McGuigan High School. Other students and staff also contributed to the project by bringing in tiles or cutting them in the shape of doves, flowers, a wolf and St. Francis. TORONTO - After two months of cutting tiles for a mosaic honouring the school’s patron saint, St. Francis of Assisi, James Cardinal McGuigan High School teacher Patrizia Montefiore and three students who contributed to the project stand proudly beside the new mosaic.

The St. Francis mosaic has become an instrument to spread the saint’s message of peace, charity and environmental stewardship at the school.
{mosimage}TORONTO - Students from Toronto’s Don Bosco High School are helping to commemorate the historical bond between Canadians and the Dutch people in a new monument celebrating the 65th anniversary of Holland’s liberation from the Nazis.

Don Bosco Catholic High School teacher Tim Stewart wrote the English and Dutch text accompanying a 1.2-metre tall, 900-kg black granite memorial that will be unveiled April 13 at Queen Wilhelmina Park in Meppel, Holland. The text speaks of the Toronto Scottish Regiment’s contribution to the liberation of Holland as the Second World War ground to an end.

{mosimage}TORONTO - Putting to rest rumours that Loretto Abbey is going to close, the Toronto Catholic District School Board says it plans to buy the Catholic high school property from the Loretto Sisters.

Angelo Sangiorgio, the board’s associate director of planning and facilities, told The Catholic Register that the board’s lease with the Loretto Sisters, also known as the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, expires in 2013.

{mosimage}TORONTO - The 12th annual Catholic Principals’ Council of Ontario conference will highlight the vocation of Catholic school principals across the province.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Embracing Our Catholic Vocation.” The conference runs from April 22 to 24 in Windsor, Ont.

Council president Paul Lacalamita said principals are “invested” in the faith formation of their community.

Sex EducationTORONTO - The Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario has welcomed Premier Dalton McGuinty''s decision to rethink a controversial sex ed curriculum for elementary school students.

“We certainly welcome this new round of consultations and the Catholic community will offer its input. We will continue working with the Ministry of Education as we always have,” Lou Piovesan, the Assembly's general secretary, told The Catholic Register.
TORONTO - One hundred curious alumni and parents of St. Michael's College School gathered for an information meeting Nov. 26 at the school to discuss plans to open an all girls' private Catholic school.