President’s Christmas Message
“Today peace will reign and love will win.
Christ is reborn. Yes. What happened that first Christmas is the central event of all history, but
Christ was born so that He could be reborn in our hearts as we believe, trust and love Him.
The angels are right: Today is born a Saviour; He is Christ the Lord.”
The words of His Eminence Cardinal Timothy Dolan not only speak to “the central event of all history” but as well to the life giving mission/vision of publicly funded Catholic schools. Each and every day, trustees, system and school leaders, teachers and support staff in every position by their words, actions and witness “place Christ at the centre of children’s/student’s lives.” What an awesome responsibility and humbling privilege.
I pray that each of you and all within your Catholic school systems will take some time this Advent and Christmas season to reflect on the hope you inspire in young people’s lives and the significant contribution publicly funded Catholic schools in Ontario make to the fabric of our society.
On behalf of the OCSTA Board of Directors and our dedicated staff, I thank all Catholic Trustees for your valuable leadership and selfless service and wish you and your families and Catholic school systems all of God’s blessings for a blessed and happy Christmas.
Patrick J. Daly
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2022 Catholic Trustees Seminar
When: January 14 – 15, 2022
Where: Delta Hotels by Marriott Toronto (655 Dixon Rd). A virtual option is available (see registration link below).
This annual event provides an opportunity for OCSTA members to:
- Network with peers from across the province in what promises to be an enriching
a timely event for Catholic school board leaders.
- Learn more about current and emerging issues in Catholic education.
- Engage subject experts in discussion on issues important to your role as a guardian and advocate for
- Gather in prayer and fellowship as a provincial community of Catholic school board
- Click Here to View the Program
- Register now for the 2022 Catholic Trustees Seminar.
“Catholic Education: Communities of Faith & Fortitude”
Presenter: David Wells
February 22, 2022, 7 p.m.
David Wells began his teaching career in 1985 at St. John Houghton School in Ilkeston. In 1990, he gained a Masters Degree in Philosophy rom Nottingham University focusing on Effective Methods of Teacher In-service Training.
“The Master’s degree changed my direction. The following years I worked in London for the Catholic Education Service providing in-service training opportunities for staff in Catholic schools. This was followed by two Diocesan roles first as an Education Adviser in the Nottingham diocese and then in 2000, in Exeter as Director of Formation for the Plymouth Diocese.”
David has received much acclaim for his presentations in Ontario where he has discussed topics of relevance to Catholic education leaders. He has spoken at the Catholic Curriculum Cooperative’s annual Conference “When Faith Meets Pedagogy” and many other events sponsored by various Catholic education groups in Ontario.
On February 22, David will speak to OCSTA members within the context of recent events and the global pandemic. His topic is entitled “Catholic Education: Communities of Faith & Fortitude”
WHEN: February 22, 2022 at 7:00 p.m.
FORMAT: Virtual (Zoom) – no fee to attend
REGISTRATION: Click on the link below to complete the registration form.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining this OCSTA event.
If you have any questions about this session, please do not hesitate to contact Sharon McMillan, firstname.lastname@example.org or 416-460-7937.
Catholic Education Week – ADVANCE KIT
What is the Catholic Education Week Advance Kit?
In order to help all Catholic educational partners engage in prayer and dialogue in preparation for Catholic Education Week 2022, OCSTA has prepared an Advance Kit of prayer services and reflection activities. Unlike the Resource Kit that is designed for students, the Advance Kit, sent early in the school year, is designed to help adult groups (trustees, school board staff, school staff groups, parent groups, parish groups, associations, etc.) reflect on the theme of Catholic Education Week with prayer services and reflection activities beginning in Advent and concluding in the month before Catholic Education Week.
What are the sub-themes of Catholic Education Week?
The Advance Kit has five prayer and reflection activities for the five months preceding Catholic Education Week, each activity reflecting one of the five sub-themes of Catholic Education Week:
Advent: Rediscover … Redécouvrir
January: Rebuild … Rebâtir
February: Restore … Rétablir
March: Renew … Renouveler
April: Rejoice … Se réjouir
How can the Advance Kit be used in a local Catholic educational community?
Each service may be used to begin a meeting or gathering, or to provide an opportunity for the adult partners in a local Catholic education community to discuss the themes. The prayer services include:
- Prayers that reflect the theme
- A scripture reading that connects with the theme*
- A personal reflection related to the scripture reading
- A theme-related reading taken from the contemporary Catholic spiritual writings
- Questions for discussion or reflection based on that reading
Does the format of these prayer services always have to be followed?
The Advance Kit is a gift to be adapted and utilized in whatever way suits the needs of your local community. Feel free to use all, or any part of the kit, in the five months prior to Catholic Education Week 2022, beginning in Advent 2021.
What approach should be taken to the discussion?
The Advance Kit is designed in Catholic education to help adult groups to sit down together to pray and reflect. In discussing the reflection questions found in this Advance Kit, it is important to allow for the divergent views and experiences that may emerge. Reflection sharing or discussions should be conducted in a gospel atmosphere of respect. Conflicting points of view should be heard and accepted without feeling the need for them to be resolved.
How can we help prepare for future Catholic Education Week activities?
OCSTA encourages all its partners to let us know about your group’s use of this Advance Kit by sending an email to OCSTA at the following email address: email@example.com.
The Catholic Education Week Committee would also be pleased to receive your feedback on this Advance Kit as well as suggestions to improve its value to our partners in Catholic education. These and all other Catholic Education Week materials are available on the OCSTA website at: www.goodnewsforall.ca.