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Welcome to our OCSB Blog

Catch a glimpse of what’s buzzing in the OCSB community. Do you have an idea or story you’d like to pitch as a guest blogger? We’d love to hear it. Email your story or idea to connect@ocsb.ca.

The social work of OCSB Social Workers

The work of OCSB School Social Workers make this possible by supporting the whole child and enabling them to access the curriculum, achieve academic success and grow as future citizens.

Achieving success at school can be hindered by various social and mental health challenges. School Social Workers have the expertise in mental health, social systems, and community resources to help overcome these barriers. They are concerned with the social determinants of health, and focus not only on the unique needs of each student, but also on the role of the wider social-economic context impacting our diverse communities.

Students may be referred for service from an OCSB Social Worker by school administrators and resource teachers, or requests may come directly from parents/guardians or the student. The involvement of a Social Worker may be an effective support to overcoming barriers to regular school attendance. They provide a variety of interventions and supports to students, parents, and school staff including such services as: counselling, clinical consultation, crisis response, professional development, and referrals to community support agencies, to name a few.

The work of our Social Workers support our Board’s mission to create the best possible conditions in which a child can develop and achieve their full social, emotional, spiritual, and academic potential.

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News From the Boardroom (April 10, 2018): Creating our own French Virtual Library — Bibliothèque virtuelle FSL

News From the Boardroom (April 10, 2018): Creating our own French Virtual Library — Bibliothèque virtuelle FSL

Students at Our Lady of Wisdom School have been busy building their very own French digital library, and the project is generating a great deal of interest. French as a Second Language (FSL) Teacher, Lina Bélanger, and her students have begun creating the OCSB FSL Virtual Library. In the form of a website, this collaborative project allows students to share their love for writing and reading in French as a second language. Students are given the opportunity to share their success as writers while developing confidence in reading to other students. By using Google slides to create their stories in French, it allows readers to benefit from Google Read & Write features by having the book read out loud to them.

This deep learning opportunity will enhance our students’ ability to be creative and collaborative while connecting with each other on a more global level. This project aligns with the FSL Framework Provincial Goals and our OCSB 3 Year FSL Plan, in which we want to increase students’ confidence, proficiency, achievement, retention and engagement in FSL.

Our Lady of Wisdom school plans to celebrate the project during Catholic Education Week, May 6-11, 2018. Plans are underway to share this website resource with all OCSB students, inviting them to submit their own books to be edited and approved before they are published.

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Answering your questions at the Parent & Child Expo

Answering your questions at the Parent & Child Expo

The OCSB is pleased to be out and about in your community! Our friendly and knowledgeable educational staff hosted a booth at Kidfest in March to welcome and connect with parents. While your children were busy playing activities and learning on iPads at our booth at the EY Centre, we were there to answer your pressing questions about starting school in September.

Did you miss us at Kidfest? Don’t worry. If you are looking for something fun to do on April 21-22, 2018, come and visit us at the Parent & Child Expo taking place at the Nepean Sportsplex on Woodroffe Avenue. This expo offers one of the best values for family fun, learning and entertainment in Ottawa. With tons of free parking, and appearances by Dora and Bob the Builder, pack up the kids and make a day trip out of it.

Come speak with our dynamic Board staff in a kid-friendly environment. Stop by our booth to register your child (aged 0-4) for our new OCSB Birthday Club, so that we can send your little one a special card in the mail when that big day comes. Let your child experience the fun of receiving ‘real’ mail addressed to them! See you at the Parent and Child Expo this weekend! For details, visit parentandchildexpo.ca.

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Easter Blessings from the Director of Education

Easter Blessings from the Director of Education

Photo: St. Pius X High School students from the school’s Developmental Education (DE) class bless school staff with a thoughtful Easter gift of appreciation. @StPiusXOCSB #WeAllBelong #ocsbLent

When I think back to Easter as a young child, I remember with fondness Easter egg hunts, family gatherings, new Spring outfits (usually matching for me and my sisters), even little gifts like skipping ropes and marbles (no doubt to get us outside of the house for a while). It was the day that our Lenten observance came to an end, holy water reappeared in the font at the entrance to our church, the Alleluia was sung once again, and purple vestments and decor gave way to the white of Easter.

While we all have different memories of Easter, we remember what it means to be an Easter people. It’s more than Easter eggs and new Spring outfits, and goes beyond the symbols of our faith. We are called to care for one another, for those who are most in need, and for our planet. We do this daily in our schools. Let’s recommit ourselves, as we journey together in these last three months of the school year, to be God’s love and spirit at work in our world.

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News From the Boardroom (March 27, 2018): Students as Researchers (StAR)

News From the Boardroom (March 27, 2018): Students as Researchers (StAR)

An extraordinary group of Grade 8 students from St. Paul High School were recently selected to present findings from their research study at the Ontario Education Research Symposium (OERS) in Toronto on March 2, 2018. The study explored how daily factors affect a girls’ interest in science and math.

Made of up five female students, the StAR (Students as Researchers) program participants were accompanied by their teacher, Tim Brennan, at the March 27 Board meeting to deliver the same presentation they did at the symposium. The engaging and dynamic presentation focussed on the research question: “Why is it that girls tend to lose interest in math and science and when does this drop-off occur?” 

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News From the Boardroom (February 27, 2018): Proposed School Year Calendar Dates for 2018-2019

News From the Boardroom (February 27, 2018): Proposed School Year Calendar Dates for 2018-2019

The OCSB has submitted proposed school calendar dates for the 2018-2019 school year to the Ministry of Education. These dates are not to be considered final until the Ministry approves the proposed calendar sometime in May 2018.

The Ministry of Education stipulates that the school year calendar shall include a minimum of 194 school days, of which school boards are required to designate three mandatory Professional Activity (PA) days for provincial education priorities and may dedicate up to four additional PA days per school year, for a maximum total of seven PA days. The remaining school days shall be instructional days and a total of ten instructional days may be designated as examination days.

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Bi-Giwen: Coming Home – Truth telling from the Sixties

Bi-Giwen: Coming Home – Truth telling from the Sixties

Bi-Giwen: Coming Home, Truth telling from the Sixties is an exhibit focused on the survivors of a time in our recent history where Indigenous children were taken from their families by child welfare services and fostered or adopted into non-Indigenous families. My Grade 11 History class was invited to attend the opening ceremony of the exhibit. Elaine Kicknosway, a Sixties Scoop survivor, introduced us to the exhibit by sharing her experiences. She spoke of the names given to her generation (“policy children” or “catalogue kids”) and how Indigenous families had been victims of “institutions” for decades. Her 14 year old son is the first in her family to live without institutional intervention.

Ms. Kicknosway’s words resonated with the students as they explored the exhibit. They read stories of losing identity and not knowing where to find it, and about the abuse that accompanied institutional living. These courageous stories were rendered life-size in the exhibit. Many of my students noticed that while the stories were all so different, in the end, survivors had a loss of identity and a lack of choice in their own history. Students commented on the fact that there are still people alive that experienced the Sixties Scoop and are not just dates in a history book. “They are still alive, this actually happened,” Logan Crawford said. Another student reminded us of the dark time in our past and how the exhibit cast a light on it to ensure something like this will not be repeated. We all agreed that we had been blessed to experience Bi-Giwen and we hope to aid in the reconciliation process by passing on the truth of the Sixties Scoop.

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