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Time to Sign up for the Kindergarten First Rider Program!

If your child is starting Kindergarten in September and is eligible for transportation, join Student Transportation Services of Waterloo Region (STSWR) on June 5, 2019.

The First Rider Program introduces new riders to the school bus and teaches them how to be a safe and responsible rider. Families will learn how to board, ride, and get off the bus safely and become familiar with transportation procedures for Junior and Senior Kindergarten students.

Register for this free event on the STSWR website

May 23rd, 2019|

14 WCDSB Schools Earn “Healthy Schools” Certifications

Waterloo Region, ON – Fourteen Waterloo Catholic District School Board schools have been awarded “Healthy Schools” certifications by the Ontario Physical and Health Education Association (OPHEA)Nine WCDSB schools were certified last year, while four made the mark in 2016-17.

The school board saw a significant increase in the number of schools achieving the GOLD standard in 2018-19 – moving from four schools last year to 12 schools this year.

And all five WCDSB secondary schools were certified, with four of them reaching GOLD standard.

Quick Facts


Christ the King Catholic Elementary School

Holy Rosary Catholic Elementary School

Monsignor EA Doyle Catholic Secondary School

Resurrection Catholic Secondary School

St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School

St. David Catholic Secondary School

St. Elizabeth Catholic Elementary School

St. Joseph Catholic Elementary School

St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Elementary School

St. Michael Catholic Elementary School

St. Nicholas Catholic Elementary School

St. Peter Catholic Elementary School


St. Boniface Catholic Elementary School Silver


St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School Bronze

Participating schools across Ontario completed the 6-Step Healthy Schools Process, which aligns with the Ministry of Education’s Foundations for a Healthy School This process guides a school community through planning and implementation of a range of activities for a selected priority health topic. The process is annual, repeating each school year, and flexible for all communities across Ontario to sustain year over year. School teams focus on one of the following six health topics:

    • Physical Activity
    • Healthy Eating
    • Personal Safety and Injury Prevention
    • Growth and Development
    • Mental Health
    • Substance Use, Addictions and Related Behaviours

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 52 schools and five adult education facilities serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 183-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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May 22nd, 2019|

Skills Ontario Competition

The Skills Ontario Competition is Canada’s largest skilled trade and technology competition. Skills Ontario is dedicated to the promotion of viable career options in the skilled trades and technologies to youth in Ontario.

Between May 6-8, 2019, Skills Ontario is expecting 35,000 spectators to watch more than 2,400 of the brightest young people in the province compete in one of the 69 skills contests offered.

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board would like to congratulate the following students as they embark on their Provincial Skills journey.  We wish them luck and confidence, as they are reminded that they are all capable of amazing things!

The road to the Skills Ontario Competition has provided many experiential-based opportunities for the students within the Waterloo Catholic DSB community – and we congratulate all of the students noted below for their efforts!

In conclusion, we wish to thank all the leads, chairs, mentors, and teachers who supported our students along the way! These opportunities would not be feasible without your support and guidance.

Leonard Bumbacco — Student Achievement Consultant

May 3rd, 2019|

NEW – Pope Francis Award for Ecological Leadership

Earlier this year, the Waterloo Catholic District School Board established the new Pope Francis Award for Ecological Leadership.

This important new piece of our staff recognition program annually recognizes up to three school staff members / volunteers who actively demonstrate a love for creation and care for the planet in all their interactions — people who initiate or lead environmental projects of all kinds.

In his encyclical Laudato Si’ (On Care for our Common Home), Pope Francis reminds us that “Along with the importance of little everyday gestures, social love moves us to devise larger strategies to halt environmental degradation and to encourage a ‘culture of care’ which permeates all of society” (#231).

The Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations ask that all graduates be “responsible citizen[s] who respect the environment and use resources wisely.”

And the WCDSB’s own Multi-Year Strategic Plan asks all staff to “promote stewardship of the earth and its resources” and to “implement the core teachings of Laudato Si’”.

The inaugural recipients of the Pope Francis Award for Ecological Leadership are:

Cynthia Brown: Library Tech — Holy Spirit CES

Kathy Doherty-Masters: Volunteer — St. Bernadette CES

Jennifer Venditti: Teacher — St. Elizabeth CES

May 3rd, 2019|

WCDSB Board Meeting Bulletin — April, 2019


Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

Monday, April 8, 2019 – Meeting Agenda Package

Public Board Meeting

Monday, April 29, 2019 — Meeting Agenda Package


Adult Education Update

Based on adult education research reports spanning over the last decade, the social, economic and health and wellness impact of adults earning a high school diploma or participating in ‘second chance’ post-secondary education has proven to be extremely beneficial. Students experience improved opportunities in the labour market, with lower chances of unemployment and higher status jobs. Intrinsic benefits include increased confidence, motivation and improved awareness, overall social well-being and interest in lifelong learning.

For more than 30 years, and most dramatically in the last 10 years, our St. Louis Adult Learning & Continuing Education programs have committed to supporting adults to earn secondary school credits toward an OSSD, develop literacy and basic skills, gain practical employment skills and improve English language proficiency. St. Louis adult programs directly connect with these social wellness and economic impacts, so no one gets left behind – a WCDSB strategic focus for the next 3 years.

The current Provincial Adult Education Strategy aims to find efficiencies and best practices among regional adult education providers. Indirectly, St. Louis has also been a support to children under 18 who have benefitted from additional literacy and numeracy programs, summer school credits, learning languages and early childhood development.

A comprehensive report presented to the Board of Trustees on Monday, April 8, 2019 covered the following key areas:

  • Secondary School Credits (SSC)
  • Core Essentials –Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS)
  • Personal Support Worker (PSW)
  • Hairstyling / Barbering
  • Culinary Arts
  • English Language Programs (LINC & ESL)
  • International Languages –Elementary (IL)
  • Literacy & Numeracy, Continuing Education
  • Childminding (Care for Newcomer Children – CNC) and Licensed Child Care

The full report is available on pages 7-14 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Safe and Accepting Schools

At the Waterloo Catholic District School Board, we believe that every student has a right to learn in a safe, caring and supportive environment. Our learning environments foster positive Christ-centered relationships that are at the heart of all our efforts to promote student achievement and well-being. The WCDSB vision for safe and accepting schools clearly aligns with the publication of Achieving Excellence: A Renewed Vision for Ontario Education, wherein the Ministry of Education made a commitment to every student in the province of Ontario. Regardless of ‘ancestry, culture, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, language, physical and intellectual ability, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socio-economic status or other factors’, all students should be able to access the curriculum, feel safe at school, and have a sense of belonging.

In addition to this, the Ministry of Education also introduced Ontario’s Well-Being Strategy for Education: Discussion Document which has also served to guide our Safe and Caring Schools focus in WCDSB.

There are four key components at the foundation of Ontario’s well-being strategy:

  • Positive Mental Health
  • Safe and Accepting Schools
  • Healthy Schools
  • Equity and Inclusive Education

On Monday, April 8, 2019 the Board of Trustees received a detailed report on the Safe and Accepting Schools portion of the strategy.

One example of ongoing success in this key area is illustrated by the school board’s suspension and expulsion data.

Overall, the WCDSB is trending downwards in terms of the overall number of suspensions over time (1492 suspensions in 2012-2013 school year vs. 945 suspensions in the 2018/2019 school year). The recidivism rate for suspensions also continues to be on the decline in both elementary and secondary schools. And, finally, in secondary schools, we are observing 49% fewer suspensions over time.

In addition to suspension / expulsion data, the report also looked at:

  • Alternative Suspension Program
  • Board use of various data platforms and predictive models
  • Cannabis education
  • Umbrella Project
  • Board partnership with Community Justice Initiatives (CJI)

To read the full report, please see pages 15-24 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Long-Term Accommodation Plan (LTAP)

The purpose of the Long-Term Accommodation Plan (LTAP) is to provide an update on enrolment status, demographic trends as they relate to enrolment, and future accommodation initiatives including boundary changes, school closures, new schools, and additions/renovations.

The LTAP includes recommendations for:

  • Land acquisitions (purchase)
  • Land disposition (sale)
  • Capital projects (additions, new schools, major renewal projects)
  • Accommodation solutions (boundary changes, school closures, portables, partnership agreements)

All recommendations are subject to approval by the WCDSB Board of Trustees as per Board Policy IV010: Facilities/Accommodations – with the exception of specific renewal (major repair) projects.

The full LTAP is available on pages 25-142 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Information Technology Strategic Plan: 2019-2024

The 2019-2024 Information Technology Strategic Plan was presented to the Board of Trustees on April 29, 2019.

The plan is divided into the following key focus areas:

  • Community Engagement
  • Infrastructure
  • Pedagogy
  • Process Optimization
  • School Technology Refresh
  • Staff Development

The following chart offers a glimpse at the ambitious scope of work on tap for the duration of the plan.

The full plan is available on pages 22-73 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Board Chair’s Update

Each month, Board Chair Bill Conway reports on the activities of the Board of Trustees. The report for March 2019 is available on page 77 via this link: Meeting Agenda Package

Upcoming Board Meetings

Committee of the Whole Board Meeting

Monday, May 13, 2019

St. Mary’s High School, Kitchener

Regular Public Board Meeting

Monday, May 27, 2019

St. Mary’s High School, Kitchener

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 183-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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For more information, please contact:

John Shewchuk – Chief Managing Officer | (519) 578-3660 | john.shewchuk@wcdsb.ca


April 30th, 2019|

WCDSB Announces Langs as 2019 Community Partner Award Recipient

Waterloo Region, ON – The students, staff and trustees of Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools proudly congratulate Langs — 2019 recipient of the WCDSB Community Partner Award.

The award has been presented since 2001 at the WCDSB’s annual Appreciation Night, in recognition of outstanding contributions made to Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools by an individual or agency serving the students, staff and greater community of Waterloo Region.


>> Formerly known as Langs Farm Village Association, Langs was established as a community development project in 1978 by a group of citizens and service providers concerned about vandalism and the lack of accessible services in the community. Since then, Langs has grown to become a dynamic, respected multi-service organization that uses a community development approach to provide comprehensive health, social and recreational services that are responsive to the changing needs of the community.

>> The Vision of Langs (“Changed lives, healthy communities”) and the organization’s values (Integrity, Respect, Accountability, Collaboration, Innovation & Excellence) complement and in many ways mirror the WCDSB’s own Vision (“Heart of the Community – Success for Each; A place for All”) as well as the Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations.

>> In 1978, Langs founders envisioned Langs as a place where partners worked together to bring health and social services under one roof. The HUB model evolved over several years beginning in 2011 when Langs moved into the HUB@1145, what is now known provincially as a ‘Community HUB’. Langs’ North Dumfries Community Health Centre Satellite Site is also a Community HUB, known as the HUB@2958.


“We are honoured to be the recipient of the Community Partner Award from the Waterloo Catholic District School Board. Our partnership with WCDSB has been instrumental to our success for the past 40 years. By working together, we have made a difference in the lives of thousands of students and families.”

~~ Bill Davidson, Executive Director, Langs

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 49 schools and four adult education facilities, serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 183-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.

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For more information, please contact:

John ShewchukChief Managing Officer

(519) 578-3660


April 16th, 2019|
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