york-goodnewsblogSchool raises over $150K for the Canadian Cancer Society
The York Catholic District School Board congratulates Sacred Heart Catholic High School in Newmarket, which raised over $150,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society through its annual Relay for Life event.The most money ever raised by a Canadian high school’s Relay for Life event, the money will go to further research and support programs for people living with cancer. This is the third year Sacred Heart CHS has joined the battle against cancer through the Relay for Life event. Determined to beat last year’s record of raising over $100,000, this year the school set a goal to raise $130,000. After the final tally, the school enthusiastically raised $150, 279.

Over 850 staff, students and community members rallied together at the school to cheer on those participating in the 12-hour relay.“From the opening survivor lap, to the closing luminary ceremony, this was a day that changed the lives of many,” said Rose Saccone, lead organizer and teacher, Sacred Heart CHS. “It was a feat that could not have been accomplished without the commitment of a tight knit community. A heartfelt thank you for all who participated, and may the memories shared glow forever in our hearts.”

At its June board meeting, the York Catholic District School Board thanked and congratulated Saccone, Kathy Leblanc, teacher, and event planning committee student co-chairs, Adriana Gonzalez and Emily Sansom, who accepted special acknowledgement on behalf of their entire school community. John Heinrich, Principal, Sacred Heart CHS, was also on hand to accept congratulations from the board of trustees and school board staff for leading the fight against cancer.

Teaching students to be Fully Alive

Catholic schools enhance our world. Our curriculum is purposely designed to produce graduates with good moral character, who are responsible citizens, caring family members, stewards of the environment and collaborative contributors to the common good of Ontario’s society.

The York Catholic District School Board teaches Family Life Education through the Fully Alive program from Kindergarten to Grade 8. The Fully Alive program is sponsored by the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario (ACBO) and the Institute for Catholic Education (ICE). The goal of the Fully Alive program is to complement the efforts of families and to support what parents are doing at home.

During the 2011-2012 school year, the board completed the full implementation of the renewed Fully Alive program. This second edition began its renewal in 2007 and was completed in 2011. This edition continues to reflect the insights of the province-wide collaboration and consultation which shaped the original program. At the same time, this new edition, particularly in the upper grades, also reflects the changing nature of our society, in areas such as family, marriage, and sexuality. The five Fully Alive themes allow for discussion and reflection on these topics, as well as other areas such as being ‘Created and Loved by God,’ ‘Growing in Commitment’ and ‘Living in the World.’

The Fully Alive programs attempts to reflect both the learning needs of the child and the special roles of parents and teachers in family life education. Communication with parents is an essential aspect of this program. Prior to the beginning of each theme, a letter is sent home to parents. This provides opportunities for parents to offer suggestions, engage in opportunities to reinforce learning at home, or to inform the teacher regarding whether or not their child is ready to participate in the lessons given the sensitivity of the themes discussed.

Family Life Education as administered by our school board helps to develop resilient, confident students who will be better able to handle life’s realities with more maturity from a deeper Catholic perspective. It is closely associated with Religious Education in Ontario Catholic schools, accounting for 20 per cent of the Religious Education program, and is taught once a week. The entire program, from Grade 1 through Grade 8 is designed to encourage children to become the people God wants them to be — to be fully alive.