Our community's largest growing population is the Aboriginal Community. According to the report ďOntario's New Approach to Aboriginal AffairsĒ (2005), Aboriginal youth is the fastest-growing segment of the Canadian population. In Ontario, more than 50 per cent of the Aboriginal population (on- and off reserve) is under the age of 27. With this realization, Aboriginal and Ontario leaders are committing resources to improve education outcomes for Aboriginal children and youth. Factors that can contribute to Aboriginal student success are teaching strategies tailored to Aboriginal learner needs, curriculum with an Aboriginal perspective, sound counselling and support services, a school environment that will make everyone feel welcome, parental engagement and an understanding of Aboriginal cultures, histories and perspectives which will allow sensitivity to specific Aboriginal education needs.
Lakehead Public Schools is committed to improving and supporting Aboriginal student success by focusing on three priorities:
The handbook entitled ďAboriginal Presence in Our Schools: A Guide for StaffĒ hopes to contribute to achieving these priorities by providing background information to staff and administrators on Aboriginal heritage and traditions, cultural teachings, celebrations, treaties, terminology, best practices and community linkages to Aboriginal community agencies. This knowledge will create an Aboriginal cultural awareness in Lakehead Public Schools that will assist in delivering quality education, build a supportive school climate, meet the specific education needs for Aboriginal students and nurture relationships between Lakehead Public Schools' staff/administrators and Aboriginal parents/guardians and families.
Initiatives are ongoing to develop innovative models and strategies to support Aboriginal student achievement by meeting the needs of First Nation, Mťtis and Inuit students living in Thunder Bay, along with their Aboriginal families and communities. See for more information.
Courses offered in the Native Studies and Native Languages curriculum are open to all students.
These courses have the flexibility to be used in a variety of ways to meet diploma requirements. More information is available from your Student Services counsellors.
Levels, or degrees, of
achievement of the curriculum expectations are presented in achievement
charts in each of the curriculum policy documents. The charts are
organized into four broad categories of knowledge and skills:
knowledge/understanding; thinking/inquiry; communication; and
application/making connections. The names of the categories may vary
slightly to reflect the differences in the specific nature of each
subject. The charts contain descriptions of each level of achievement in
each category; these are broad in scope and general in nature, but they
provide a framework for all assessment and evaluation practices. They
enable teachers to make consistent
The achievement levels are associated with percentage grades and are defined as follows:
The Advanced Placement
Program (AP) is a cooperative agreement between participating secondary
schools and post-secondary institutions. AP courses permit students to
undertake additional academic content as identified by post-secondary
institutions. Completion of AP courses, while in secondary school, may
exempt students from some post-secondary courses or allow students to
replace a first-year course with a second-year option. AP motivates good
students, enhances the quality of current curriculum and moves students
forward in their destination planning.
Alternative Ways of Meeting Diploma Requirements
Most students complete the majority of their studies in a secondary school. Credits towards the Ontario Secondary School Diploma may also be earned in a variety of ways outside of a traditional school setting. These include:
Articulation programs facilitate the smooth transition of students from secondary to post-secondary study by coordinating the curricula between institutions.
Opportunities may include:
The current articulation agreement between Lakehead Public Schools and Confederation College includes:
Please note that articulation agreements are reviewed annually. Students interested in receiving more information should contact their secondary school guidance counsellor.
Assessment and Evaluation of Student Achievement
Program Planning and Assessment, 2000 outlines the requirement for assessment and evaluation and reporting of student progress in all subjects under OSS. The main purpose of assessment and evaluation is to improve student learning. Information gathered helps teachers identify studentsí strengths and those areas needing improvement, as well as program areas of strength and those needing improvement.
Assessment is the process of gathering information from a variety of sources, including assignments, demonstrations, projects, performances and tests. This information should demonstrate how well students are achieving the curriculum expectations. As part of assessment, teachers, peers, and individual students provide descriptive feedback that guides efforts for improvement. Assessment is ongoing and supportive. Evaluation is the process of judging the quality of a studentís work on the basis of established achievement criteria and assigning a value to represent that quality. It reflects a studentís level of achievement of provincial curriculum expectations at a given time.
In order to ensure that assessment and evaluation are valid and reliable and that they lead to the improvement of student learning, teachers use a variety of assessment and evaluation strategies that:
From championship sports teams to intramural pick-up games at lunch, Westgate offers a full array of athletic opportunities. Our teams are known, not only for bringing home awards, but also for wide participation. So whether football, basketball, curling or track and field is your preference, there is a place for you on a Tiger Team!
Regular attendance at school is critical for studentsí learning and achievement of course expectations. Where, in the Principalís judgment, a studentís frequent absences from school are jeopardizing his or her successful completion of a course, staff will communicate with the student and parents to explain the potential consequences of the absences, including failure to gain credits, and to discuss steps that could be taken to improve student attendance.
Certificate of Accomplishment
Students who leave school before fulfilling the requirements for the OSSD or the OSSC may be granted a Certificate of Accomplishment. This certificate is a useful means of recognizing a studentís participation in the secondary school program, especially for those students who plan to take certain types of vocational programs or further training for employment after leaving school. A student may return to school or take additional credit courses after having received the certificate. The studentís transcript (OST) will be updated, but a new certificate will not be awarded when the student leaves again. A student who receives the certificate and chooses to return to study at the secondary level may earn the OSSC and/or the OSSD after fulfilling the appropriate credit requirements for each.
Code of Conduct
A Safe Learning
The Code of Conduct is founded on principles of fairness and non-violence and has a focus on assisting students to develop appropriate social/personal skills and non-violent problem-solving techniques that will be used when incidents occur. Students are encouraged to assist each other through programs like peer mediation, problem-solving discussions and dispute resolution.
The LDSB does not tolerate the following activities on its property, on school buses, or at Board-sponsored events:
We are proud of our
state-of-the-art Design Technology program. Students use cutting edge
software and equipment to examine exciting cross curricular applications
of computers and technology. Career explorations and the development of
web-based skill portfolios provide an informative snapshot of student
progress and learning. Communications, arts, information tech, building
construction, manufacturing, and
If a student is unable to write their exam on the scheduled day, they must complete an exam conflict form and hand it into Ms. Szyszka.
If you have any questions please contact Ms. Szyszka at 577-4251.
Failure to Complete Courses
If a student has completed a course but has failed to achieve the curriculum expectations at a passing level, staff will determine the best way to enable the student to earn a credit for the course, in consultation with the student and parents.
Lakehead Public Schools offers a Certificate of French Immersion Studies. To obtain the Certificate, students at Hammarskjold High School need to take ten credits with French as the language of instruction. Students can choose from a wide variety of courses, nineteen in all, and have ample opportunities to enhance and refine their French skills. For students who wish to learn a third or fourth language, Spanish or German is also offered.
Course Withdrawals and
If a student withdraws from a Grade 11 or 12 course within five instructional days following the issue of the first provincial report card, the withdrawal is not recorded on the Ontario Student Transcript.
If a student withdraws from a course after five instructional days following the issue of the first provincial report card, the withdrawal is recorded on the OST. The studentís percentage grade at the time of the withdrawal is also recorded.
Students who repeat a Grade 11 or 12 course that they have previously completed successfully earn only one credit for the course. Each attempt and the percentage grade obtained is recorded on the OST. A student or parent may request that the Principal identify Grade 11 and 12 courses in which the studentís performance was affected by extraordinary circumstances by using a special indicator. The studentís percentage grades are also recorded. This special indicator may also be used for courses from which the student has withdrawn because of extraordinary circumstances.
Guidance and Career Education
The Guidance and Career Education program is a vital and integral part of the secondary school program. Through the program, students acquire the knowledge and skills they need in order to learn effectively, to live and work cooperatively and productively with a wide range of people, to set and pursue educational and career goals and to carry out their social responsibilities. The program is delivered in a variety of ways including classroom instruction, orientation and exit programs, career exploration activities and individual assistance and counselling. The program is organized into three areas of learning: student development (the skills and habits necessary for learning); interpersonal development (the skills and knowledge necessary to get along with others); and career development.
By the end of secondary school, students are expected to:
Each secondary school has a Student Services Department, staffed by specially trained teachers and support staff, and equipped with resources and information materials related to careers and educational opportunities.
All students are required to complete a half-credit course in career studies as part of the new diploma requirements. These courses will be offered at the Grade 10 level. Several other courses in guidance and career education are available to help students experience success at school and in their postsecondary careers. These courses equip students with essential skills for academic, interpersonal and career success. Students learn to manage the changes they will encounter throughout life.
Student Services personnel will organize visits by guest speakers and representatives of colleges, universities and various careers; visits to workplaces and post-secondary educational institutions; and workshops and conferences for students.
Ontario Secondary School Certificate (OSSC)
The Ontario Secondary School Certificate will be granted on request to students who leave school before earning the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, provided that they have earned a minimum of 14 credits, as follows:
The provisions for substitution for compulsory credits applies to the Ontario Secondary School Certificate.
Ontario Student Record (OSR)
The Ontario Student Record folder (OSR) is the official record for a student. The OSR is created when a student enters the Ontario school system and moves with the student from school to school. Every Ontario school keeps an OSR for each student enrolled. The OSR is created under the authority of the Education Act, and the contents of the OSR are protected under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The parents and the student may examine the contents of the OSR on request, with the assistance of the Principal or designated administrator.
The OSR folder contains achievement results, credits earned, and other information important to the education of the student.
Ontario Student Transcript (OST)
The Ontario Student Transcript (OST) is a provincially standardized document which provides a comprehensive record of a studentís achievement in secondary school. The credits that a student has earned towards fulfillment of the requirements for the graduation diploma are recorded on the OST, regardless of how or where the credits were earned.
Ontario Secondary School Literacy Requirement (OSSLT)
The purpose of the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) is to ensure that students have acquired the essential reading and writing skills that apply to all subject areas in the provincial curriculum up to the end of Grade 9. All students in public and private schools who are working toward an Ontario Secondary School Diploma are required to write the OSSLT in Grade 10. Students who have been eligible to write the OSSLT at least twice and have been unsuccessful at least once are eligible to fulfill the requirement through the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course (OSSLC). Principals have the discretion to allow students to enroll in the course before they have a second opportunity to take the test, if the Principal determines that it is in the best educational interests of the student. (Ministry of Education Policy/Program Memorandum 127.) Successful completion of the OSSLT or OSSLC is a graduation requirement.
Assessment and Recognition
Provincial Report Card
Students have their progress reported on a standard Provincial Report Card, which includes the following information:
The report card will include information with respect to a studentís Individual Education Plan (IEP) where appropriate. The report card will also indicate whether a course has been modified to meet the needs of students. The Response Form provides a section where the student and the parent or guardian can comment on the studentís progress at the end of the mid-term or mid-semester. A summary of credits earned to date, including a breakdown of compulsory and optional elective credits, is provided at the end of the final report card of the year or semester. Student progress is generally reported at mid-term or mid-semester and at the completion of a year or semester.
Semestered & Non-Semestered Courses
Secondary schools are generally organized on either a full-year model (non-semestered) or a semestered model (half-year.) Semestered schools can offer some courses on a non-semestered, full-year basis. All Lakehead Public High Schools are currently organized on a semestered structure.
Recognizing the needs of exceptional students and designing programs that respond effectively to these needs are important and challenging aspects of program planning.
After an Identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) identifies a student as exceptional, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is developed and maintained for that student. An IEP may also be prepared for students who are receiving Special Education programs and services but who have not been identified as exceptional by an IPRC.
The IEP is based on analysis of the studentís strengths and areas of need. It will identify what the student is expected to learn and will explain how the Special Education program and services will help him or her achieve those learning goals and expectations. For those exceptional students who are 14 years of age or older, the IEP will also outline a coordinated plan for transition to postsecondary activities, including education, work or adaptation to community living. Further information can be obtained from the secondary school Student Services Department.
The Student Services Departmentís primary focus is to work closely with students in all aspects of development during the high school years. Four specific services include:
In order to allow flexibility in designing a studentís program and to ensure that all students can qualify for the secondary school diploma, substitutions may be made for a limited number (to a maximum of 3) of compulsory credit courses using selections from the remaining compulsory courses offered by the school. The decision to make a substitution for a student should be made only if the studentís educational interests are best served by such substitution. If a parent or an adult student requests a substitution, the Principal will determine whether or not this should be made. A Principal may also initiate consideration of whether a substitution should be made. The Principal will make his or her decision in consultation with the parent or adult student and appropriate school staff.
Transfer Courses are partial-credit courses that bridge the gap between courses of two different types in the same subject and grade. Students who revise their educational and career goals and who wish to change from one destination-related stream to another in a particular subject may often do so by taking a transfer course. Transfer courses enable students to achieve the expectations not covered in one course type, but are required for entry into a course in the next grade. Transfer courses will be offered to students who wish to change from one course type to another in the same subject between Grade 10 and 11 or between Grade 11 and 12.
Requests will be considered within existing Board resources and scheduling.
Services Thunder Bay