A season of celebrations in the SCDSB

The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) experienced a flurry of celebrations this past spring, with six schools holding milestone events. From official grand openings to 50th anniversaries, students and staff, along with community members and dignitaries, were brought together to either commemorate a new school or take a trip down memory lane.

Events included:

  • Severn Shores PS grand opening: May 2
  • Orillia SS grand opening: May 9
  • Eastview SS 50th anniversary: May 12 & 13
  • Cameron Street PS 50th anniversary: May 13
  • Nottawasaga & Creemore PS 50th anniversary: June 8
  • Lake Simcoe PS grand opening: June 20

Each celebration highlighted the talent of students through musical performances and artwork. Students even played the role of Master of Ceremonies at one event! School spirit was evident in the halls and gymnasiums where people gathered to show their support and give congratulations to their school communities.

Here is a snapshot of the celebrations that took place:
(Eastview SS event photo credit: Brian Chisholm)

Congratulations to all school communities celebrating a milestone this year!

Stayner Collegiate Institute celebrates Canada 150

Over the next few weeks, as we approach Canada’s 150th birthday on July 1, we’re highlighting some of the Canada 150 celebrations at schools across the SCDSB.

A sea of red and white could be seen everywhere you looked around Stayner Collegiate Institute (SCI) on May 18 as they hosted A Canadian Celebration event for their students and Grade 7 and 8 students from Clearview Meadows E.S., Byng P.S., Nottawasaga Creemore P.S. and New Lowell P.S.

Students enjoyed a day filled with a wide variety of workshops, activities and games including crokinole and other Canadian board games, floor hockey, football, lawn bowling, maker spaces, butter tart baking, art activities and a Great Canadian Bake Sale.

The backdrop to the day’s events were the stunning gardens blooming with 2,150 red and white tulips offered to the school from Canada’s Garden Council in conjunction with Vesey’s Bulbs of PEI. SCI’s garden is one of 149 gardens planted across Canada linked to a flagship 150th Celebration Garden Promenade in Niagara Falls.

Take a peek into the day’s events in this video:

From the artwork on the walls, to the tulips blooming in the gardens and the smiling faces of students and staff enjoying the celebration, every detail of the event was truly special for all who attended and very Canadian, eh?

Gifts for our Tiny Teachers

Roots of Empathy Baby Celebration 2017

On May 29, the Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) celebrated our sixth year of Roots of Empathy, a unique program that brings a Tiny Teacher – a baby in their first months of life – into elementary classrooms. The 2016-17 school year saw Roots of Empathy in almost 30 SCDSB schools, led by volunteers, SCDSB staff and Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) Public Health Nurses.

This year we celebrated the remarkable contributions of all of our Roots of Empathy instructors, families and babies with a picnic at the Education Centre. Hope Park, a volunteer instructor who has been facilitating the program in the SCDSB since 2012, was honoured for five years of service with the program. Director of Education Steve Blake and many SCDSB superintendents of education were in attendance to meet and thank our little ones and their families, and acknowledge the power of the program and the work of all of our Roots of Empathy Instructors.


Roots of Empathy is an international evidence-based program that started in Toronto. By observing the growth and development of the baby and the attachment between the baby and their parents, students in Roots programs learn to be more caring and empathic global citizens. Since 2000, the program has been evaluated in numerous independent research studies, which have shown that children who participate in the program demonstrate decreased aggression and increased social and emotional understanding, empathy, knowledge of parenting and pro-social behavior (e.g. sharing, helping and including). This program supports our board’s work to ensure equitable, inclusive, safe and caring schools.

For further information, please contact the Roots of Empathy key point persons for the SCDSB, Stephanie Ross and Denise Cole, at roots@scdsb.on.ca.

Bear Creek celebrates Canada 150

Over the next few weeks, as we approach Canada’s 150 birthday on July 1, we’re highlighting some of the Canada 150 celebrations at schools across the SCDSB.

If you walk through the halls of Bear Creek Secondary School, you’ll see a display case filled with 150 items representing Canada. From Tim Horton cups, Roots apparel, maple syrup and Inuit carvings, this display case capsules Canadian heritage.

Since the beginning of the year, Bear Creek has been celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary with some impressive projects!

One of the most extraordinary things the school has done is arrange an “Eat Together” event. Inspired by a President’s Choice commercial, over 60 participants gathered to share a meal in the front foyer of the school. The event was so successful that the organizers are considering hosting another Eat Together event in the fall to welcome Grade 9 students and their families to Bear Creek.

Some of the other projects include:

  • 150+ pounds of food donated to the food bank
  • $150 in Canadian Tire money donated to Jump Start
  • 150 pints of blood donated to Canadian Blood services
  • $150 raised from the Winter Ball, all proceeds going to Life Skills
  • 150 books written by Canadian authors read by staff and students
  • 150 bowls of soups prepared by cooking classes donated
  • 150 minutes of spin class completed by staff
  • 150 pillow cases made by fashion classes to be donated to Sick Kids
  • 150 pounds staff weight loss challenge
  • 150 coats donated to Barrie Out of the Cold
  • $150 raised for FNMI Grade 7/8 trip to Toronto
  • 150 blankets/food items donated to Humane Society

Bear Creek will continue their celebrations into December until Canada’s 150th year comes to an end.

Go Canada!

SCDSB recognizes Commitment to Character

On May 18, over 100 students, staff, volunteers and co-op employers gathered at the Education Centre for the annual Character Recognition Awards Evening. Each year, the Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB), through the Character Education Development Project Team, recognizes individuals in school communities who demonstrate good character in their daily lives.

This year, employers providing co-operative education opportunities to our students were added as a sub-group for recognition.

Honourees were nominated by their peers and colleagues for their demonstration of one or more of the SCDSB’s Commit to Character attributes: integrity, responsibility, cooperation, caring, respect, optimism, honesty, equality, courage and inclusiveness.

“Our schools are filled with students, staff and volunteers who demonstrate amazing character on a daily basis,” said Superintendent of Education Daryl Halliday.

The event began with a performance from W.R. Best’s Ukulele Club. Artwork and videos created by students with a focus on good character and what it takes to be a great Canadian were shared throughout the evening.

Congratulations to all Character Recognition Award recipients!

A full list of Character Recognition recipients is included below:

Abigail Beckett
Adam Laver
Sarah Hamby
Ainsleigh Baird
Alexa Flood
Alexandra Wilson
Ali Bull
Alyssa Brinkman
Amber Thiveierge
Ava Lazary
Ben Cridland
Blake Jones
Bolu Ogunniyi
Braedan Allen
Brooke Giles
Catherine Lacoursiere
Chad Malone
Charlotte Creswicke
Claire Sit
Clare Novakovich
Danny Webster
Devon Hansard
Dylan Cullen
Elise Durie
Erika Thomas
Gavin Jamieson
Gavin O’Leary
Gavyn Robinson
Grace Taylor
Jack Dimou
Jack Straw
Jacob Day Webber
Jaime Mogridge
James Doyle
Jocelyn Johnson
Jocelyn Kendall
Jordan VanWalleghem
Kaia Pluim-Simon
Kaitlyn McKnight
Kendra Lancaster
Kyles Swales
Maggie Gillis-Baker
Mallory Luhtala
Matt Moreau
Melia Robinson
Mya Greenwood
Natalie Betts
Noah Humble
Reece Oliver Clarke-Versluys
Reid Wilson
Ryder Hellingman
Sarah Steadman
Semiah Kyle
Sophie Cherutti
Steven McCartney
Tatiana Ferrante
Yasmin MacLean
Zoe de Savoye

Caroline Fisker
Chantal Millar
Diane Jolliffe
James Gallant
Jan Cumming
Jason Taylor
Jenn Manuge
Jessica Longthorne
John Gillen
John Brown
Karen Wilson
Kathy Hacon-Belcourt
Katie Cain
Katie Evans
Kit Luce
Marlene Macklin
Megan Fremeau
Rosalee Bard
Roseanne Moreau
Sally Telford
Stan Conaghan
Steve Harper
Tony Centurione

Alice Leach
Alison Currie
Amanda Campbell
Andrea Butcher-Milne
Anne Worts
Becky Dwinnell
Carrie Barnes
Clayton Culham
Colleen Cascanette
Erik Carl
Gaye Spencer
Heather Rowell
Janice Breadmore
Jennifer Dunster
Jill Ruppert Julia Lialiuk
Karen Aigeldinger
Kelly Coward
Ken Wilkins
Michelle Magnusson
Patty Wilkinson
Sherry Watton
Tammy Boker
Tara Marshall-Sutton
Tim Moncin
Tony Denbok
Tracy Ross

Cooperative Education Employers
Bayfield Ford Lincoln
Danny Viveiros & Victoria Gilbert – Dortec Industries, Bradford
Dr. Sally Moran & Dr. Hilary Rodd – Orillia & District Veterinary Services
Jackie Curd – The Clothes Line
Michelle Mailhoit – Michelle’s Top Soil

Celebrity chef shows students that cafeteria food can be healthy AND delicious

Celebrity Chef Corbin Tomaszeski and Chartwells School Dining recently undertook a project to add some new, exciting and tasty recipes to Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) high school cafeterias.

Hospitality & Tourism and Culinary Arts classes from SCDSB high schools were invited to create and submit a healthy pasta recipe. The winning recipe, Veggie Mac and Cheese, meets the requirements of the Ministry of Education’s Healthy Food & Beverage policy and was reviewed by Chartwells’ dietitian.

Congratulations to the winning students who created the recipe – Nantyr Shores Secondary School students Ciara Hustler, Sierra Osterhout and Emily Glue.

During the school’s lunch hour on April 21, Nantyr Shores students had the chance to try a number of new recipes, including the winning pasta recipe, mango coleslaw, healthy poutine, chicken and beef savoury pot pies, and a Nanaimo bar dessert. The students gave their immediate feedback on the dishes and the most popular ones will be added to school cafeterias across Simcoe County.

Looks like the students enjoyed the new dishes as most of the food was gone by the end of the hour!


Soaring to new heights at the opening of Chris Hadfield Public School

On June 7, students, staff and community members celebrated the grand opening of Chris Hadfield Public School in Bradford. A visit from the commander himself, Colonel Chris Hadfield, made the day even more special. From touring the school and meeting staff to sitting in the gym with the students and even sharing a song from space, he made the opening a day that no one present will ever forget.

Thank you to Green Apple Studio for photographing the experience, and to the students and staff from Nottawasaga Pines for videotaping his visit.

Media coverage:

Bradford Times

Bradford Topic

CTV Barrie

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