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Significant Events in the History of Catholic Education

A message from the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association:

As you know it is very important that all involved in the tremendous gift of publicly funded Catholic Education have a good understanding of our rich history and the vision and sacrifice of those who built such a strong foundation. Particularly for those in governance and administrative leadership positions it is crucial we are able to articulate, celebrate and share “Our Story.”

In this regard you will find attached a document prepared by OCSTA entitled “Significant Events in the History of Catholic Education and the Ontario Catholic School Trustees Association” (Appendix 1). It was updated in 2004 to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of our Association. It outlines significant milestones, legal decisions and legislative changes that incrementally have
positively impacted Catholic Education in Ontario. Among the most consequential of these events was the passing of Bill 30 which led to the extension of funding to Grades 11, 12 and 13 (OAC) in
Catholic schools. You will find attached a copy of the text of Premier Bill Davis’ June 12, 1984 speech which ushered in this historic change (Appendix 2).

There have of course been a number of events since 2004 which have impacted Catholic Education. Among these would be the passing of Bill 177, “The Student Achievement and School Board
Governance Act” in 2009 and Bill 122, “The School Boards Collective Bargaining Act” in 2014. As you know both of these pieces of legislation have more clearly defined and changed the
role/responsibilities of trustees, school boards and the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association.

It is our plan to update the 2004 document over the next few months and forward it to you along with other historic information. We ask that you share this with the trustees of your board as well
as others who you believe it would benefit.

If you would like additional information or have questions regarding any of the specific events, please let us know.

Please click here to view the document: Significant Events in the History of Catholic Education and the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association

Board Meeting Cancelled

Please note that due to inclement weather forecast for today, tonight’s Board meeting has been cancelled. Next scheduled Board meeting date is Tuesday, February 7, at 6:30 p.m.

St. Andrew’s Catholic School Takes First Place in Provincial Video Contest

Congratulations to St. Andrew’s Catholic School who have won the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association short video contest “The Story Behind the Name of My Catholic School”! A great video which details the first history of Catholic education in St. Andrew’s West, which began in 1802.

The contest invited Ontario’s Catholic school students in grades 4 through 12 to create a two minute video detailing the story of the person or saint for whom their school was named. In total, over 170 submissions were received. St. Andrew’s Catholic School won first place for the elementary panel.

Kindergarten registration is now underway!

CDSBEO schools are now accepting new student registrations for September 2017! We invite parents to call the school to make an appointment to visit during Kindergarten Registration Week, which begins Monday, January 16. Please visit the CDSBEO website registration page at for information on how to register your child. We look forward to welcoming your child to Kindergarten!


A Christmas Blessing

Loving God, Help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and worship of the wise men.

Close the door of hate
and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.

The CDSBEO would like to wish all members of our Catholic school community, staff, students and families many blessings this Christmas, and in the new year.


Director of Education Presents Annual Report

Director of Education, Wm. J. Gartland, presented his annual report to the Board of Trustees at the meeting held on Tuesday, December 6. The report reviews successes in areas such as student achievement, faith development, and program initiatives.

“The CDSBEO continues to focus on the well-being of all students. Our success resonates in the accomplishments of our learners, who continue to excel in their faith, as well as their academic achievements.”

Director Gartland congratulated staff and members of the Board for making the past school year one of continued success.

Please click here for the print version of the Director’s Annual Report.

Todd Lalonde Acclaimed Board Chair, Robin Reil Elected Vice-Chair at CDSBEO Annual Meeting

Mr. Todd Lalonde, Trustee for City of Cornwall and Glengarry County, has been acclaimed to the position of Chair for the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario. It will be the first term as Chair for Mr. Lalonde, who is entering his eleventh year as a Catholic School Trustee. Mr. Lalonde served the Board as Vice-Chair during the last term.

Mr. Lalonde told Trustees, “I would like to thank my fellow trustees for the confidence they’ve given me to be their Chair for the next year. Being around this table and serving Catholic education is an honour, and I am excited to embark on this journey, supported by the experience and expertise of my fellow trustees. I would also like to congratulate the CDSBEO staff and administration, for the good work they do each day. I also look forward to working with Trustee Reil, who has great experience as an educator and trustee.”

Mr. Lalonde succeeds Mr. Brent Laton, Trustee for Grenville County and Elizabethtown-Kitley Township. Mr. Laton had served five consecutive terms as Chair. Mr. Lalonde also offered thanks to Mr. Laton for his years of exceptional service as Board Chair.

The Board of Trustees also elected Robin Reil, Trustee for City of Brockville, Town of Smiths Falls, and Leeds County to the position of Vice-Chair. Mr. Reil has been serving as a Catholic School Trustee since 2003. “I do appreciate the support of my fellow Trustees, and I commend Executive Council for the great work they do. I look forward to us working as a team for the good of our students.”

Director of Education, Wm. J. Gartland, congratulated Mr. Lalonde and Mr. Reil. “The annual meeting is a wonderful celebration of our Catholic faith, and an opportunity to renew our dedication to Catholic education. I know that both Mr. Lalonde and Mr. Reil share that dedication and it will be a pleasure to work with them, and all of the Trustees as they continue to provide leadership and governance to the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario.”

The Board welcomed Archbishop Brendan O’Brien of the Kingston Archdiocese, who presided at Mass to begin the evening. His Grace offered his thanks to Trustees and Senior Administration for the work they do to preserve and protect their Catholic faith and Catholic education. The Archbishop also blessed all CDSBEO Trustees.


The 2014-2018 CDSBEO Board of Trustees are:

Mr. Ron Eamer – Trustee, City of Cornwall and Glengarry County
Mrs. Nancy Kirby – Trustee, Lanark County
Mr. Todd Lalonde – Trustee, City of Cornwall and Glengarry County
Mr. Brent Laton – Trustee, Grenville County and Elizabethtown-Kitley Township
Mr. Robin Reil, – Trustee, City of Brockville, Town of Smiths Falls, and Leeds County
Mrs. Karen McAllister – Trustee, Dundas and Stormont Counties
Mrs. Sue Wilson – Trustee, Prescott and Russell Counties
Ms. Alexa Meeson – Catholic Student Trustee, 2016-2017



Left to right: Robin Reil (Vice-Chair), Todd Lalonde (Chair), Wm. J. Gartland (Director of Education)






OCSTA Campaign for Publicly Funded Catholic Education – Together in Faith

On Monday, November 30, OCSTA invited Catholic trustees and friends of publicly funded Catholic education, to share information about a new online campaign to promote Catholic education in Ontario.

Called Together in Faith, the goal is to build a vibrant online community of supporters of Catholic education, and share the stories of the exceptional students, teachers, and other members of our faith community who are demonstrating excellence in our distinct school system.

Please join the campaign by visiting and signing up to show your support for Catholic education in Ontario.

Catholic Education Coalition Central Event – with guest speaker David Dayler

On Wednesday, November 24, the CDSBEO hosted the annual Catholic Education Coalition – Central Event, with guest speaker David Dayler. Mr. Dayler is the Director of the Office for Discipleship and Parish Life for the Diocese of Hamilton.

Mr. Dayler spoke to attendees about Pope Francis’ vision of the Church as a field hospital, which nourishes and heals the spirit of the wounded. In Catholic education, the school also nourishes and supports the spiritual journey of students, in partnership with, and with the support of the Church, and parents. In the truest sense of the word, Mr. Dayler explained how we are all “church” when we gather in our parishes, our schools, and our homes. As collaborators on this missionary journey, all members of the Catholic school community are potential workers in the “field hospitals” of life.

“Catholic education isn’t confined to the school,” noted Mr. Dayler. “Catholic education begins in the home, is nourished in the Eucharist and sacraments, and the life of the parish, and is sustained and grounded in the school.”

He continued, “Catholic education is intended as a mutually supportive partnership, within the specific and respective responsibilities of each participant.”

After Mr. Dayler’s inspirational message was delivered, school groups discussed ideas for upcoming community Catholic Education Coalition events, to be held in the spring. The event was live-streamed to three regional locations in the Board, including Perth, Hammond and Cornwall.


Mr. David Dayler speaks to CDSBEO staff, administration, and parents about understanding the role of the home, school and parish in Pope Francis’ Vision of the Church – The Field Hospital.














Mr. David Dayler (centre), with Superintendent of School Effectiveness, John Cameron, and CDSBEO Director of Education, Wm. J. Gartland.














Catholic Education Coalition – Central Event

On Wednesday, November 23, the CDSBEO invites all members of the Catholic school community to attend the Catholic Education Coalition – Central Event, with guest speaker David Dayler.

The event will be held at St. Michael Catholic High School in Kemptville, beginning at 6:30 p.m., and will be live-streamed to three regional locations: St. John Catholic High School in Perth, St. Francis Xavier Catholic High School in Hammond, and Holy Trinity Catholic Secondary School in Cornwall.

David Dayler, Director of Discipleship and Parish Life at the Diocese of Hamilton, will speak about understanding the role of home, school and parish in Pope Francis’ vision of the Church – the Field Hospital.

Please contact your Catholic school principal if you wish to attend.

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