Inside this Issue: OCSTA Recognizes Bruce-Grey Trustee Norman Bethune OCSTA is pleased to announce that the annual 2016 Trustee Award of Merit will be presented to Bruce-Grey CDSB Vice-chair, Trustee…

By Editor

Mar 2, 2016

Inside this Issue:

OCSTA Recognizes Bruce-Grey Trustee Norman Bethune

N.Bethune-web_7768OCSTA is pleased to announce that the annual 2016 Trustee Award of Merit will be presented to Bruce-Grey CDSB Vice-chair, Trustee Norm Bethune, at the Association’s Annual General Meeting and Conference this April.

This award recognizes a trustee who has strong Catholic leadership qualities and who has rendered exceptional service to Catholic education over the years. Norm has served Catholic education for more than 50 years. For thirty-four of those years Norm was a teacher and principal with the Bruce-Grey Catholic DSB. In 2011, Norm received national acknowledgement of his dedication and leadership as the Canadian Catholic School Trustees’ Association’s selection for that year’s Higgins Award.

Norm will be presented with his award at OCSTA’s AGM and Conference on April 29th at the Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood. We hope all members will be in attendance to congratulate Norm!

Kevin Kobus To Receive Higgins Award


Kevin Kobus (at left) with Minister of Education, Liz Sandals and OCSTA President, Kathy Burtnik.

The Canadian Catholic School Trustees’ Association (CCSTA) has just announced that they have selected former OCSTA Executive Director, Kevin Kobus as the 2016 recipient of the Justice James Higgins Award.

Justice James Higgins (1913-1974) was a distinguished Canadian jurist and Catholic school trustee from St. John’s, Newfoundland. The award was established to honour his memory and is annually presented by CCSTA to a person who has displayed exceptional leadership, commitment and vision to the cause of Catholic education in Canada.

Kevin will be recognized for this achievement at the CCSTA June Annual General Meeting and Conference in Yellowknife.

Congratulations Kevin!

Province-wide Project for Catholic Education Week

The theme for this year’s Catholic Education Week (May 1-6) celebration is “Opening Doors of Mercy” and the provincial student trustee leadership team has once again developed a special initiative to highlight this year’s celebration.

In a February 16th memo to all Catholic school boards, Catholic Board Council student trustees Matthew Marin and Natasha Iaboni and OCSTA Director of Catholic Education, Brian O’Sullivan, introduced the “Opening Doors of Mercy Video Project.”

All Catholic District School Boards are invited to submit a 2-minute video (created by students) that demonstrates how their schools “Open Doors of Mercy” in the local community. A promotional video explaining the project has been prepared by the student trustee leadership team and it can be viewed by clicking the video below:

CDSB video submissions for Catholic Education Week are due by Monday, April 4, 2016.  Each board is asked to submit only one submission for the board. For convenience, boards are encouraged to upload their submissions to YouTube and to then share with OCSTA (attention: the URL generated by YouTube for that particular video.

Our Catholic Student Trustee leadership team will then be combining visual highlights from all 29 English Catholic school boards and 8 French Catholic school boards into a composite video. This unique compilation will be presented in all Catholic high schools across Ontario at the provincial Mass to be held on May 3, 2016.

A reminder to all that the Catholic Education Week resource package created for elementary and secondary classrooms, and the specially produced Catholic Education Week song and lyrics, are all available for download from the following URL:

86th AGM and Conference: Embracing our Vision


Thursday, April 28 – Saturday, April 30, 2016

Blue Mountain Resort
110 Jozo Weider Boulevard
Blue Mountains, ON L9Y 3Z2
Co-hosted by the Simcoe Muskoka CDSB

Program Details

Presentation Highlights:

  • Inspiring a Vision, Empowering for Action keynote address: The Most Reverend Paul-Andre Durocher, Archbishop of Gatineau, Quebec
  • Spotlight on Presentations for School Trustees – Lorraine Behnan, Change Management and Communications Expert
  • Best Practices in Strategic Planning for School Boards – (Workshop) Chris Sarellas and Lori Barnes, Leadership Development & School Board Governance Branch, Ministry of Education
  • Examining Innovative Green Schools in the 21st Century (Workshop/Discussion Panel), moderated by Cynthia Clarke, AASG Enterprise Asset Management, panelists: Paul Sapounzi, Managing Director, The Ventin Group, Doug Snyder, Snyder Architects, and Ken MacSporran, Moffet & Duncan Architects
  • Aboriginal Education: A Time of Change, Healing and Hope (Workshop) presented by Linda McGregor, Manager, First Nation, Metis and Inuit Education, Simcoe Muskoka CDSB
  • Mental Health, Spirituality, and Authentic Happiness, presented by Dr. Patrick Carney, Psychologist and Mental Health Lead, Simcoe Muskoka CDSB
  • Minister of Education, The Hon. Liz Sandals

Regional Meetings – Friday, April 29th (2:45 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.)

Post Conference Event – Trip to Martyr’s Shrine – Saturday, April 30

Use our online registration form to register now.

Annual OCSTA/OCSBOA Business Seminar

Prior to every AGM and Conference, OCSTA partners with the Ontario Catholic School Business Officials’ of Ontario to host an annual Business Seminar which this year will happen on Thursday, April 28, 11:30 a.m. (the Seminar includes a pre-session lunch) at the Blue Mountain Resort.

Our keynote speaker this year will be Peter Norman, Vice President and Chief Economist with the Altus Group.  Other sessions include a presentation by Reg Pearson, Associate Deputy Minister, Treasury Board Secretariat Bargaining and Compensation, and a panel discussion reviewing the new collective bargaining process.

Business Seminar Online Registration and Program Details

CDSB News Highlights – Northeastern and York CDSBs

Today’s highlight focuses on news from the York and Northeastern CDSBs:

Students Go on Google Expeditions

Northern Ontario Catholic High School Welcomes First Nation Youth

Catholic Register Easter Drawing Contest

The annual Catholic Register Easter Drawing contest is open to children enrolled in Grades 1-8.  The deadline for submission is March 18, 2016 at 12:00 p.m.

A completed entry form is required for every entry and must include the signature/authorization of a parent or guardian.

For more information, please visit the Catholic Register Easter Drawing Contest website:

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