By Editor

Feb 1, 2023

OCSTA Short-Video Contest Award Winners

At the recent Catholic Trustees Seminar, on January 20, 2023, the winners of the 2022 OCSTA Short Video Contest were announced. The OCSTA contest invited students from across the province in grades 4-12, to create 2-minute videos that highlighted the theme “We are Many, We are One” through acts of Christian service that give witness to our faith.

Winners were selected followng an online voting process – all boards were invited to promote access to the voting portal just prior to the Christmas holidays. Following are the submissions that received the highest votes (Board Trustees at the Catholic Trustees Seminar accepted the awards on behalf of their winning schools):

Catholic Elementary School Winners

1st PLACE:

St. Luke CES (Nipissing Parry Sound CDSB) –  “St. Luke’s School Activities”


2nd PLACE (3-way tie):

St. Alfred CES (Niagara CDSB) – “Students Serving Others”

President Daly (l.) with Niagara CDSB Chair Danny Di Lorenzo

St. Francis CES (Huron Superior CDSB) “We are Many, We are One”

President Daly with Huron-Superior CDSB Chair Gary Trembinski

San Lorenzo Ruiz CES (Dufferin-Peel CDSB)

President Daly (centre) with Dufferin-Peel CDSB Chair Luz del Rosario (l.) and Trustee Thomas Thomas.



St. Joseph CES (Windsor-Essex CDSB) “We are United in the Journey”

Left to right: Windser-Essex CDSB Director of Education, Emelda Byrne; President Daly; Trustee Mary Heath and; Catholic Trustees Seminar Chair, Colleen Landers.



Catholic Secondary School Winners


Marymount Academy (Sudbury CDSB) – “We are Many, We are One”

Sudbury CDSB Chair and OCSTA VP, Michael Bellore (left) with Sudbury Student Trustee Catena Hayden and President Daly.



St. John’s College (Brant Haldimand Norfolk CDSB) – “OCSTA Video Contest Submission”

Brant Haldimand Norfolk CDSB Chair Rick Petrella (l.) with President Daly.



All Saints Catholic Secondary School (Durham CDSB) – “All Saints Toy Drive”

Left to right: President Daly, Durham CDSB Chair, Monique Forster and Director of Education Tracy Barill.


Congratulations to all award recipients! A very special recognition and note of thanks is extended to all participants in this year’s contest as the videos created were outstanding. To view all submissions visit:

All Elementary School Video Submissions

All Secondary School Video Submissions



2023 Catholic Trustees Seminar

OCSTA was pleased to welcome over 200 attendees at the 2023 Catholic Trustees Seminar that was held at the Delta by Marriott – Toronto Airport, January 20 – 21.

The Seminar opened with a moving and engaging presentation by Catholic author and educator, David Wells whose presentation “Placing Christ at the Centre! What is the “Centre” and What is Christ Doing There? provided relevant insight on the particular vocation and role of a Catholic School Trustee.

– Listen to David Wells’ Presentation
– To view slides contact Sharon McMillan  – smcmillan [at]

OCSTA President Patrick Daly presented a report to the membership that detailed the Association’s current priorities and intiatives.

President Daly discussed:

  • the Association’s current advocacy program which includes regular meetings with the Minister of Education, Stephen Lecce, senior staff at the Ministry of Education, and several MPPs
  • OCSTA’s Advocacy agenda includes the following:
    • Correction of the province’s property assessment system’s default “public” mechanism. After successive months/years of advocacy on this matter, OCSTA was pleased with the recent launch of the MPAC School Support Modernization Project which will allow individuals to register their school support electronically, starting January 19, 2023. A separate online platform will be housed on the website.
    • Multi-year funding for learning recovery and student mental health and well-being.
    • Lifting the school consolidation moratorium
    • Updating Capital construction benchmarks
    • Advocating for increased flexibility and autonomy of Catholic school board
    • Revoking the regulation freezing Executive Compensation
    • Releasing a fair, equitable and adequate student transportation funding model, and
    • Monitoring and providing advice on a number of pre- and post-municipal / trustee election challenges

– For the full presentation please listen to audio recording of the President’s Report
– View the President Report Slides


OCSTA was pleased to welcome Minister of Education, the Hon. Stephen Lecce to this year’s Seminar. Following is a highlight of key comments shared by the Minister (a Q & A session followed the Minister’s Address):

  • Efforts are underway to speed up the capital approvals process – the Minister is in discussions with other ministries to streamline the process.
  • Curriculum reform continues and changes are being made to prepare students for jobs of the future, including skilled trades.
  • Student transportation—appears there is movement towards a “needs based” model for funding. Details will be in the upcoming GSN.
  • Mental health—the Minister referred to the increased funding provided to boards over the last two years (over $100 million) and the need to have mental health supports for students over a whole year, not just the school year.

– Listen to Minister Lecce’s Presentation


The closing session for this year’s Seminar included a very timely and interesting presentation by David Coletto of Abacus Data on the topic “Catholic Education and Preparing Students for the Future of Work”.

-Listen to David Coletto’s Presentation
– View the David Coletto’s Presentation Slides


Following is the list of Workshops offered to delegates this year (sessions are not recorded):

1.    “Equity, Diversity and Inclusion – Legislation, Policy and Faith”

Gillian Tuck Kutarna, Partner, Miller Thomson

Dr. Moira McQueen, Executive Director, Canadian Catholic Bioethics Institute

2.    “An Overview of Code of Conduct Requirements for School Boards as Legislated under the Education Act

Margaret Correia, Ministry of Education

Moderator: Patrick J. Daly, OCSTA President

3.    “The Role of the Catholic School Board” – Panel Discussion

Lori Di Castri, Chair, Bruce-Grey CDSB

Mark Mullan, Chair, Ottawa CSB

Bob Schreader, Chair, Renfrew County CDSB

4.    “School Safety Zones”

Terry Shea, Chair, Algonquin & Lakeshore CDSB

David DeSantis, Director of Education, Algonquin & Lakeshore CDSB

Carey Smith-Dewey, Superintendent of Education, Algonquin & Lakeshore CDSB

5.    Student Trustees Workshop – “A Pastoral Letter to Young People” 

Most Reverend Bishop Bergie, Bishop of St. Catharines


The Catholic Trustees Seminar is organized by OCSTA’s Catholic Education and Trustee Enrichment (CETE) Committee. We are sincerely grateful for and appreciative of the leadership and support provided by the following CETE Committee Members:

Colleen Landers, CETE Chair, Trustee, Northeastern CDSB
Michael Bellmore, OCSTA VP
Nancy Crawford, Chair, Toronto CDSB
Patrick Daly, OCSTA President
Mark Mullan, Chair, Ottawa CSB
Rick Petrella, Chair, Brant Haldimand Norfolk CDSB
Garry Tanuan, Trustee, Toronto CDSB
Jennifer Wigston, Trustee, York CDSB
Fr. Pat Fitzpatrick, OCSTA Chaplain


Catholic School Board News


Dufferin-Peel CDSB School Kindness Campaign Sparked by Life of Young Student

Students and staff at St. Albert of Jerusalem Elementary School (Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board) were recently featured in a CTV News story for the meaningful ways in which they are spreading kindness, promoting wellness and a sense of belonging in their school.

View story


Algonquin and Lakeshore CDSB Students win Scholastic Canada Prize

From the Algonquin and Lakeshore CDSB

ALCDSB French immersion kindergarten class have won a Canada-wide colouring contest organized by Scholastic Canada.

Mme Julie Bell and Mme Lisa Amey’s kindergarteners at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic School in Amherstview are among nine other classes in Canada who have been selected.

The theme of the contest was What does kindness mean to you? Mme Bell and Mme Amey helped all 28 of their students submit their individual colouring sheets ahead of the 2022 holiday season, to celebrate the importance of kindness and to express what kindness means to them.

The winners are set to receive 25 books for the class, with the opportunity to select an organization to also receive 25 books. The students chose Kingston Interval House (K.I.H.) as the recipient.

The KIH is an emergency shelter and was chosen by the class because it serves families throughout the region.

“In our kindergarten class, we are always looking for ways to help others, especially people in our community. When we saw this contest opportunity, we knew that it was an excellent opportunity to possibly be able to help those in need,” says Mme Bell. “Plus, our students LOVE books; they love to be read to and to look at books, so we welcomed a chance to earn more books for our classroom as well.”

The Executive Director of Kingston Interval House, Pam Havery, says she is pleased to accept this generous donation for their shelter.

“These books will bring enjoyment and pleasure to the children who stay with us. Many thanks to the French immersion kindergarten classes at Our Lady of Mount Carmel for nominating Kingston Interval House,” says Ms. Harvey.

Students answer: What does Kindness look like to you?

Kindness is …

William: “My friend and I playing together.”

Luke: “Sharing toys.”

Bennett: “Helping my Mommy.”

Madison: “Playing with my friends.”

Shreeja: “Putting a Band-Aid on my friend’s leg.”

Philip: “Asking a friend to play.”

Harvey: “The friend is smiling at a friend.”

Charlotte “Helping my mom take food out of the fridge.”

Greyson: “Helping my mom shovel all the snow.”

Leo: “Giving a hug.”

Avery: “Me and my Mommy holding hands.”

Lewis: “Giving a hug to somebody.”

Adeline: “Helping my mommy feed our baby kitties.”

Henry: “Helping someone up, like if they fall, helping them up.”

Lochan: “Someone playing with me.”

Jack: “By giving stuff to people.”

Scotty: “Sharing with someone else, even though if they don’t share.”

Oliver: “Sharing toys with my sister.”

Hope: “Hugging Mommy.”

Jackson: “Inviting someone into your play.”

AJ: “Is happy.”

Remi: “I play with a friend.”

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