STAR Program at St. Matthew Catholic Secondary School

Transitioning from elementary school to secondary school can be both an exciting and stressful time for students and their parents. Becoming familiar with available school and program choices before making a final decision can help ensure the best choice is made to meet student’s individual needs, thus promoting a smooth transition and positive experience in high school. At St. Matthew Catholic Secondary School, the STAR program (Student Transition, Advising & Registration Program) has been established to help students, and their parents/guardians, with this decision. The program introduces grade 7 and 8 students to the secondary school environment through a number of phases.

For the first phase of the STAR program, St. Matthew CSS staff visit grade 7 and 8 students at CDSBEO feeder schools. A 40 minute presentation is given, which focuses on communicating the key considerations that will affect a student’s secondary school pathway. A school video is shown, and a description of the St. Matthew CSS program is highlighted, including details on the extensive use of technology, individual support through smaller class sizes, and the school focus on engagement through hands-on activities, educational goals, and career exploration.

Those who are interested in the program at St. Matthew CSS will then participate in an activity day, which consists of spending a day at St. Matthew CSS to become familiar with the staff, facility, and the programs offered. During this day, students participate in hands-on workshops in Construction, Hospitality, and Science. In addition, students are treated to a homemade breakfast and lunch, prepared by the Hospitality program. Parents/guardians are also welcome to participate.

Over the last few weeks, St. Matthew has hosted the feeder school students at several STAR activity days. Pictured below are students from Bishop Macdonell Catholic School participating in the STAR activity day.


Pictured below is Dustin Smith, working in the Construction classroom. The students built a pencil shaped hat rack.



Brendan Merpaw learns the properties of ice cream, while making some of his own…



Ethan Fertakis (left) and Keith MacIntosh learn how to make ice cream…



Skye Taylor-Tessier (left) and Tiffany Smith (right) bake cookies as part of the hands-on session in the Hospitality classroom.



Thomas Fontaine (left) and Ethan Fertakis (right) make a marshmallow dessert in the Hospitality classroom.



Jayden Dufresne (left) and Christian Legault-Collison (right) build a pencil shaped hat rack as part of the hands-on Construction Technology session.