Category Archives: Our Team

Annual YCDSB and YCPIC Conference



2018 Lenten Reflection

On February 14th, we will begin our journey towards Easter through our Ash Wednesday observances. Many thanks to Chaplaincy and the Faith Development Council who have worked hard to prepare thoughtful and meaningful liturgies for staff and students.


The season of Lent is a time of reflection and introspection. It is a time of personal sacrifice and almsgiving.  We are encouraged to pray and reflect on the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary.  No matter how to choose to engage with God and your faith this Lenten season, know that Christ is walking alongside you in your journey towards the hope that only Easter can bring.

A Prayer for a Fruitful Lent                                                                                            

My precious and crucified Lord, I offer You this Lent.

I offer it to You with total abandonment and trust.

I offer You my prayers, sacrifices and my very life this day.

Do with me, Lord, as You will.

I pray that this Lent will be fruitful.

I know You have much to say to me and much to do in my life.

May this Lent be a time through which Your mercy is poured in abundance into my soul,

and into the souls of all Your faithful.

Dearest Lord, help me to especially see my sin, this Lent.

Humble me so that I may see clearly.

Give me courage and strength to confess my sins,

and to turn from them with all my heart.

Enlighten me with Your Holy Word, dear Lord.

Help me to come to know You and to deepen the gift of faith in my life.

Show me the plan You have for me,

and place my feet upon the path You have chosen.

My suffering Lord, I thank You for the fullness of Your perfect Sacrifice.

I thank You for holding nothing back,

giving Your life to the last drop of blood.

May I offer You my very life as a sacrifice,

trusting in Your mercy with every offering.

Keep me faithful to my Lenten promises,

and bring forth new life through these sacrifices of love.

Strengthen my prayer and make me holy.

Help me to turn to You, each day,

seeking Your sacred and pierced Heart.

Blessed Mother,

you stood by your Son in His suffering and death,

stand by me, I pray, as I journey through this life.

Pray for me and offer me to Your Son,

that He may take me into His loving embrace.

Lord, Jesus, Son of the Living God,

have mercy on me a sinner.

Lord, Jesus, Son of the Living God,

have mercy on me a sinner.

Lord, Jesus, Son of the Living God,

have mercy on me a sinner.

Mother Mary, Mother of our Crucified Lord,

pray for us who have recourse to thee.


Former Student Reflects on Indigenous Studies at SBA

André Rebeiz, Class of 2012

The Indigenous issues courses offered at our school have tremendously shaped and motivated my personal and professional goals. They have served as a springboard for my

AndreěHeadshotmotivation to conduct further research and to share this perspective with my peers, throughout my undergraduate and graduate studies in Paris. Equipped with the cultural competency skills I gained, I have also been working for the past four summers in remote Indigenous communities in Northern Québec, Nunavut and Labrador, and I have also published a report for the Canadian Education Association (CEA) entitled Land-Based Learning: A case study report for educators tasked with integrating Indigenous Worldviews into classrooms. I will be publishing a second report in the upcoming year. The courses undertake a hands-on approach to learning about Indigenous cultures, languages, histories and traditions, notably through numerous guest speakers and field trips. Only through direct consultation and relationship-building with Indigenous peoples can these cultures be learned with integrity. I am forever grateful to these courses, and to Mrs. Orsi, for providing me this genuine experience that has shaped my ambitions for the long-term. 

Sydney Henzie, Class of 2016                                                                                                            sydUntil I entered high school and took Native Studies course, I had never really heard a lot about Aboriginal peoples. As I continued these courses, my eyes were opened to the major issues and problems that were happening in Canada and around the World.  As I was made more and more aware of the issues that Indigenous peoples are facing I became even more interested.  This Global Indigenous course and the Contemporary Aboriginal Issues course gave me the inspiration and motivation to pursue a career as Lawyer so that I can help to advocate for Aboriginal peoples rights. It made me want to be part of making a difference in the relationship between Aboriginal peoples and the rest of Canada, because if not me, then who?  My university program will continue to teach me and help me better understand Aboriginal peoples, their past and present. If it were not for these courses and Mrs. Orsi, I do not think that my future plan would be what it is now. Courses like these are so important and inspiring, I am happy that I was lucky enough to go to a school that provided the opportunity of the course. 

Megan Holman, Class of 2016                                                                                                             megTaking the Indigenous Studies course at SBA helped to expand my worldview. When the course first started I had limited knowledge about Indigenous peoples around the world, including their culture, and past and present issues they face. This course helped me become a more active and informed citizen, which has helped me understand current events, as well as feel more knowledgeable about world issues. Being Metis, it also helped me gain insight into my culture and allowed me to apply for a vast number of scholarships. If you want to become more aware of current issues in the world, I suggest this course about Canada’s unique, strong, and diverse First Peoples!

Current students are invited to consider taking Indigenous Studies. If you have any questions, please see Ms. Orsi.

In the upcoming school year, 2018/2019 ENG3C1 has been replaced with NBE3C1 – Contemporary Native Voices. This will afford students the opportunity to explore contemporary Canadian indigenous issues through works of Canadian literature. Students planning to take ENG3U1 may take NBE3U1 in its place. This focus of this course is very similar to NBE3C1. If you’re curious, you can speak to Ms. Raponi who is currently teaching NBE3U1.

Social Media Training for Parents!

The St. Brother Andre Catholic School Council will be hosting this wonderful events for parents on March 1st, beginning at 7pm. See the flyer below for details and click here to register!


Guidance Services, Week of February 5-9

On Monday, February 5th, students will receive their Second Semester timetables in their Semester 2,  Period 1 homeroom. Homeroom lists have been posted in the Atrium and cafeteria for students.

Monday, February 5 -Thursday, February 8th, Guidance is closed for appointment during school hours. Students can come to the Guidance office before school until 8:20 or after school if there are “critical issues” with their timetable. Critical issues can be:

1. An incomplete timetable for students in grades 9-11

2. Missing graduation requirements for students in grade 12

Regular appointments resume on Friday, February 9th. At this point, requests for timetable changes will only be entertained if there of long-term pathways implications.

Night school registration is completed online at Students are invited to view other school board websites for various offerings available.

SBA’s Attendance Accountability Strategy

Congratulations on all of your work and for the support you gave to one-another first semester.

There is a very important issue that affects the learning environment at St. Brother André – student absences and late arrivals to class.  While the vast majority of our student body has excellent attendance and arrives to class on time, approximately 10 to 15 percent of our population is frequently absent or late to class.

If we work together, we can easily address this issue and improve the learning environment in our school.

Here are some concrete reasons why this issue is important to our school:

  1. When a student misses a class, the overall functioning of that class is diminished.  Both the absent student and teacher need to invest time to catch up.  Other students are also affected because they are often part of a team activity or assignment that becomes disadvantaged overall.  We are only as strong as we can be when we all show up.  Please try to make personal appointments outside of the school day.
  2. When a student arrives to class late, the other members of the classroom are disrupted.  This affects us all in a number of ways:  it deteriorates the overall efficacy of the learning environment; it implicitly inculcates an environment of disregard and disrespect for others; and it impacts on the overall success we are capable of achieving.

With your support, we will undertake the following measures to address this issue:

  1. At 8:20 a.m. each morning, the William Tell Overture is played over the school PA system to remind students that they need to get to class within the next four minutes.  By 8:24 a.m. all students should be seated in the classroom and ready to stand for the playing of the national anthem.  Any student who arrives to class after 8:24 a.m. is late.  Out of the four periods in the day, period one has the highest number of late arrivals to class.  While we appreciate the many factors that impede timely arrival in the morning, we ask that parents and students work together to address those barriers that may be preventing them from early arrival.  Ideally, students should arrive no later than 8:15 a.m. so that they have some added preparation time.
  2. On a daily basis, parents will continue to receive automated phone calls and email notices if their son or daughter is absent from a class.  As a new practise, we will be sending automated email notices home to parents indicating if their son or daughter has been late to one or more of their classes that day.  Parents are asked to speak with their children when they receive an email notice in order to address the factors at play.
  3. Teachers and vice principals will contact both the student and the parent in order to resolve the pattern of late arrivals and/or absences.  As part of our Board’s progressive discipline policy, consequences will be assigned based on the number of late arrivals and/or absences that occur.
  4. Our administrative team will conduct regular data reviews of all late arrivals and absences in an effort to ensure consistency in how we work together in addressing this issue with the hope that there will be a measurable improvement.

While all workplaces and schools struggle with the issue of late arrivals and absenteeism, it is a fundamental life skill to be present and on time.  We are committed to working with our staff, parents and students so that we are can improve upon this skill.

Thank you for your support as we move forward together with a spirit of cooperation and consideration.  We can rely on you, our students, to always put forward your best effort.  May Christ’s grace be with us.

Exam Review and Semester 2 Start-Up

exam review day

Parents! Learn More about Google Read and Write!

If you are interested in helping your son or daughter to improve their literacy skills using Google Read and Write, click here to register for register for a FREE webinar. The sessions are an hour, from 6-7pm, and will be run by TextHelp, the developer of Read and Write. The sessions are as follows:

December 13: Intro to Read and Write

January 23: Level II with Q & A

February 22: Intro to Read and Write

March 22: Level II with Q & A

April 30: Intro to Read and Write

This is a fantastic opportunity for parents to help students to leverage tools already at their disposal to maximize their opportunities for success in the classroom.

Notice from the York Catholic District School Board

Dear Supporters of Catholic Education,

 In November, the Ontario Liberal Party launched their “Common Ground” website:

 This website invites the public to put forward proposals that address particular provincial needs and priorities. One of the current suggestions is a proposal for the amalgamation of all Ontario schools under one non-denominational school board. It is important that we, as Catholic school ambassadors, strongly voice our Constitutional rights, and continue to stand steadfast in supporting our 175-year-old Catholic school system.

 In our Catholic schools, we continually focus on developing our students into confident, faith-filled and charitable citizens. In addition to excellent academic programming, our students are enriched through Parish and community partnerships, which nurture students in mind, body and spirit by giving witness to Gospel values.  Catholic school graduates are called to love their neighbours and contribute to the common good of our society.

 As stewards of Ontario’s publicly funded Catholic schools, your Board of Trustees is united in our mission to protect our Catholic identity.  Collectively, we can make our voices heard to preserve our right to publicly funded Catholic Education.

 We encourage you to visit the Common Ground website and register to cast your vote in favour of Catholic Education. During the upcoming election year, media outlets may also run “online polls” on this issue, please participate in them to affirm our message and defend our precious heritage.

 Thank you for your continued support of Catholic Education.

Board of Trustees, YCDSB

An All Saints Day Reflection

Prepared by: Ms. DiFede, English Department and Faith Ambassador

Reflect and He is with you.
Pray and He is listening.
Walk and He will join you.
Come together as a family and He will smile.
On All Saints’ Day, our St.Brother André  students came together as a community to offer their intentions to God. These powerful prayer intentions show how our community continues to grow as effective communicators and listeners as well as compassionate citizens showing love and care for others. May we continue to act as Saints, leading a life full of goodwill through our thoughts, words and actions. Know that we are not alone, but together we are stronger and unified.
Thank you for your participation and support!
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