looking at the biodiversity possibilities within our schoolyard. We’re
looking at what kinds of life exist there and how do we support it.”
project under consideration at the school is a video-connection of
the classrooms. The morning announcements, which are done by the students,
are currently broadcast over the PA system. Dr. Dorner says that the
school would like to obtain a video camera and television sets for
the classrooms to enable televised broadcast of the announcements.
will incorporate technology, science and the language arts,”
he states. “We’re trying to bring technology to the children.
It is the modus operandi of learning the skills they will need later
project, however, is still in the very early stages of consideration
and its future is uncertain.
Anthony’s has also had its fair share of obstacles as well.
Within the last year, the school endured a hard fight to prevent its
closure by the school board. Ierullo felt that the idea of closing
St. Anthony’s School was ridiculous considering the school’s
can they [the board] claim to support immigration and diverse cultures
and not support institutions which support these cultures?”
closing of the school would have had repercussions on a spiritual
level as well. St. Anthony’s is the only Catholic school left
in Centretown. Sister Emilia Testa, supervisor of the St. Anthony
Daycare, feels that many parents would have opted to enroll their
children in the public Cambridge Street Community School as opposed
to sending them out to Bayswater to attend St. Mary’s, the closest
families and children would have lost a lot of services because the
school makes enormous efforts to include diverse languages and special
needs,” she says.
the help of regional councillor Diane Holmes, around 100 people were
bused to the strategy meeting before the board. Not only did community
members speak out against the closing of St. Anthony’s School
but the students did as well.
kids were a hit,” says Ierullo. “Two students from St.
Anthony’s and two from Cambridge (Public School) spoke. They
had prepared their own speeches, every word was from their mouths
board spared the school and the closure of St. Anthony’s School
is no longer an issue.
school has also been the focus of media attention. Recently, CBC has
been knocking on St. Anthony’s door hoping to cover the letter-writing
campaign the children undertake every Christmas. Each year, students
send letters of greetings to Canadian peacekeepers who are unable
to be with their families at Christmastime.
its other good deeds, St. Anthony’s also coordinates a Christmas
gift and food donation for the families of students who are known
to be in times of economic trouble. The Servite Sisters of St. Anthony
donate toys and church parishioners donate groceries.
Anthony, although a vehicle of education, is also an outlet for spirituality
and community cooperation.
remembers with fondness her years at St. Anthony and its sister school,
St. Agnes, which is now closed.
was a real community warmth. We, as children, felt important,”
it be tending to a few cuts on the face or lobbying against the closure
of the school, the students are learning the importance and strength
of cooperation. The community’s evolution and survival has been
based on helping one another and St. Anthony’s School mirrors
that ideal perfectly.