Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - Volume 12, Issue 4

Catholic School Advisory Council

St Benedict’s Catholic School Advisory Council (formerly School Council) is a group of parents, guardians, community members, teachers and administrators committed to making our high school a great place to learn and grow! The council sees family involvement as one of its main priorities and is committed to welcoming parents into the St. Benedict community by increasing communication, removing barriers, and creating opportunities to get involved!

Meetings are from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. on Thursdays, eight times throughout the year, and are typically held in Room 111.

If you would like to be a regularly participating member of the advisory council and receive agendas in advance of the meetings, please complete the CSAC Member form and return the completed form to the Main Office by September 16th, 2019.

WCDSB Students Meet or Exceed Provincial Average in all Grade 3, 6, 9 & 10 EQAO Assessment Categories

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board today released its 2018-19 Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) assessment results for reading, writing and mathematics in grades three, six, nine and ten. Grade nine students are only assessed in mathematics. Grade 10 students participate in the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT).
For the 4th consecutive year, WCDSB students have met or exceeded the provincial average in Grade 3, 6 & 9 math. This includes standing 11% above the provincial average in Applied Level Math.
The Grade 3 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB ahead of the province by +1% in reading (75%), +2% in writing (71%) and +4% in math (62%).
The Grade 6 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB reading and writing scores level with the province (at 81% and 82% respectively) — while math (49%) stands +1% above the provincial average.
The Grade 9 WCDSB to Ontario comparison shows WCDSB’s Applied Level Mathematics students ahead of the province by +11% (at 55%) — while the board’s Academic Level Mathematics students stand above the provincial average by 1% (85%)
The WCDSB to Ontario comparison of OSSLT results shows WCDSB students topped the provincial average by 2% — with 82% of students achieving success.
”Each year we have the opportunity to gain a snapshot into our progress as a system when we receive our EQAO results. This year’s results give us many reasons to celebrate the work of our staff and students, but we know there is more work to be done. Our schools, like our students, are each unique and in every case, there is an invitation to dig deeper into the results to see how we can improve and grow further in our achievement. We continue to be very pleased that we have met or exceeded the provincial average in all measures. We are particularly proud of our work in the area of Grade 9 Applied Mathematics and hope to carry that momentum forward in all our work throughout the system", says Loretta Notten, Director of Education for the WCDSB.

Nutrition for Learning returns to St. Benedict

Hot breakfast is open starting this Friday, September 27th in room 107 at 7:30am until the first bell at 7:55am. Hot breakfast will again this year be offered on Wednesdays for "Waffle Wednesday" and on Fridays for "Bagel Friday". Look forward in seeing you there!


Morning class time change this Thursday

Tomorrow we will be celebrating our first liturgy of the school year. Father Ross Campbell from St. Patrick's church will be our presider.
All students are expected to attend mass and participate in a respectful way. The schedule for the morning will be changed to accommodate mass as follows:

Period 1: 8:00 to 9:05
Period 2: 9:10 to 10:35

The schedule for the afternoon remains the same.

News from Guidance

By Mrs. L. O'Neill

Who is your Guidance Counsellor?

Mrs. Lesley O’Toole A-Di & International Students ext. 5190
Mrs. Karla Arkell Dj - Ki ext. 5636
Mr. Nick Betik Kl - Pl ext. 5633
Mrs. Laura O’Neill Po - Z ext. 5634
Mrs. O’Connor Administrative Assistant ext. 5631

Grade 12’s and Post-Secondary Options

Grade 12’s were invited to a post-secondary information session on September 17 and 18. These meetings were for grade 12 students who are considering college or university application for September 2020. If they could not attend, they should stop by Guidance to pick up an information sheet. If they are feeling confused about the application process and are having difficulty navigating through web sites and documents, they should consider taking advantage of the following supports:
  1. Confirm that they have completed, signed and handed in the “Consent for Disclosure of Information to the Ontario College Application Service (OCAS) and/or the Ontario University Application Centre (OUAC). This form was part of the registration packages that were online this summer to all grade 12 students. Unless this form is completed and signed, the school is not allowed to transmit marks to colleges and universities. If you are unsure as to whether or not your son or daughter has taken care of this important detail, please contact the appropriate counsellor for clarification.
  2. Plan now to attend our Post-Secondary Information night on Thursday October 24 at 7:00 PM. This event is being hosted by the Guidance Department and coincides with parent/teacher/student interviews. The presentation will take place in the Lecture Hall.
  3. Jacob Hespeler will be the site for the Cambridge University Information Presentation on October 17 from 6:00 – 7:30 PM. All Ontario universities will have representation at this event and there will be opportunity to attend formal presentations, as well as time to tour displays.
  4. Conestoga College will be hosting their annual College Information Presentations on October 22 from 10:30 AM – 1:00 PM and 5:00 – 7:30 PM at their Doon Campus. All Ontario colleges will have representation at this event and Conestoga will also have additional information available to parents and students regarding their programs.
  5. Attend the Ontario Universities Fair (OUF) September 27 – 29 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from 10am to 5pm daily. Visit for more details.
  6. Attend the Ontario College Information Fair October 23 5:00 – 9:00 PM and October 24 9:00 AM to 2PM at the Enercare Centre, Toronto.
  7. Follow us on Twitter @sbenguidance to get the latest information in 280 characters or less!
  8. Both the Ontario Colleges website and the Ontario University website offer a wealth of information regarding schools, programs and the application process. To research colleges and their programs go to To research Ontario universities and their programs go to

College and University Presentations

We have been fortunate in arranging visits to our school with liaison officers from several Ontario universities and colleges who will be making presentations to interested grade 12 students. The presentations have started, and provide an excellent way for students to ask questions about specific schools that they are interested in. Students must sign up to attend the presentations that they are interested in attending, by the end of lunch the day prior to the visit. While we do not limit the number of visits that students may attend, we do encourage students to be selective about the visits that they attend as many of them take place during class time. Students are responsible for any school work that they miss if they choose to attend a presentation. Please refer to the complete list of presentations that is posted on our school website.

Community Service Opportunities

In addition to fulfilling an important diploma requirement, volunteering provides students with a way to give back to their community. As opportunities become known to the guidance department, they will be announced on the announcement system, posted on the Guidance bulletin board and listed in the BENN.

Sign-up sheet available in Guidance to assist with Academic Awards on October 10th.
This is a great opportunity for Grade 9 students!

Is looking for volunteers. Do you have what it takes to be one of us?? 519-744-1555 425 Bingeman Centre dr. Kitchener Email to apply
September 27, 28 October 4-6, 11-13, 17-20 & 23-27

Info for Grade 12 Students from Ontario Universities

The new Ontario Universities' Info 2020 is live! Find and compare Ontario university programs, plus research residences, scholarships, campus visits and more.

OUInfo 2020 includes a refreshed look and new logo, while maintaining the same functionality. It was renamed to better align with the Council of Ontario Universities' new branding and the Ontario university community, and to more closely reflect the content of the website.

OUInfo is the only resource that is updated directly by the Ontario universities. Visit:

Universities post updates to OUInfo throughout the year - check back regularly.

Find more information about Extenuating Circumstances on the Guidance website.


Are you considering volunteering at St. Benedict?

man w transparency
Volunteers are a welcome resource at St. Benedict C.S.S. The school is in a position of trust with regards to students and must strive to protect their intellectual, physical, mental, and emotional well-being. As such, the WCDSB administrative procedure (APO 001) mandates that all volunteers be screened, references checked, and Criminal Background Check (CBC) done. School administration reserves the right to oppose or rescind any volunteer placement.

If you would like to volunteer at St. Benedict, please contact Ms. Fondacaro or visit our Volunteering page on the school website.

Do You Know The Cost Of Post-Secondary Education?

Courtesy of Seeking Scholarships

It’s the beginning of the school year and if you have teenagers in their senior years of high school (Grades 11 & 12), many of you are thinking about the upcoming costs involved in higher education. Maybe you have been planning for it for some years now (RESPs?) or maybe you haven’t been able to plan due to extenuating circumstances. A 2016 CIBC survey finds that most parents are not aware of the high costs of tuition, and “they don’t know what to budget for their children’s non-tuition costs such as books, accommodation, and living expenses.” But whatever your situation, it’s a good idea to ramp up your awareness of the costs of post-secondary education so you can prepare to help your child meet their educational goals.

Here is what you need to know:

As mentioned in last week’s blog, according to a report by Statistics Canada, students enrolled full time in undergraduate programs will pay, on average, $6,463 in 2019/2020. Keep in mind that tuition varies by province and program. For example, tuition for the Engineering Program at Western costs $12,294! See links below for tuition by province / field of study.
The average cost of college tuition for one academic year for Diploma Programs is $2,400. Bachelor’s Degree Programs cost approximately $6,100.
These fees vary by institution and apply to all Canadian students. They include fees for campus groups, student newspapers, clubs, student health services, athletics, etc. On average, compulsory fees for Canadian undergraduate students are $914 in 2019/2020 with college fees approximately the same. The province of Ontario now has the Student Choice Initiative that allows students to opt out of fees for designated non-essential services. Maybe other provinces have a similar program. It would be prudent to check that out!
OTHER EXPENSES (Please note: I have used the University of Guelph’s estimated costs for the 2019/2020 year as an example of costs per year, except for the $950 textbook amount which was taken from Wilfrid Laurier University’s “Estimated First-Year Expenses.” I did this as an example of how costs can range and vary per university, program of study, living costs, etc.
  • Textbooks, Equipment, & Supplies (materials necessary for a specific program such as photography, fine arts, science, etc.): $950-$1400
  • Miscellaneous: cell phone, clothing, recreation, etc.: $2,250
  • Living costs: OFF-CAMPUS rent incl. utilities ($4,800) and food ($2,600): $7,400 plus travel; RESIDENCE ($6,389) and full meal plan ($5,355): $11,744 plus travel


- LIVING AT HOME: $9,300

Having two young adults in university — one living at home while the other lives away — I can tell you that those numbers ring true!
So parents, you have just reached the first step in planning for your child’s post-secondary education: awareness of the cost!
According to a 2018 Canadian University Survey Consortium, 50% of Canadian students leave school with debt, with 32% owing $20,000 or more. A 2010 report by the Canadian Federation of Students states that Ontario and the Maritime provinces “have had the highest average debt loads, averaging more than $28,000.” Only 34% of bachelor graduates with student debt had paid off their student loans three years after graduation. Students as well as parents need to be aware of the costs of attaining a post-secondary education. Involve your teens in the process of strategizing on how to graduate with the smallest debt possible.
And remember . . . it’s never too late to look for scholarships to help lessen some of that potential debt!
put on calendar

Academic Awards Nights RSVP

If you received an invitation to Academic Awards Night on October 10th, this is a friendly reminder that your RSVP is due by Wednesday next week. RSVP's can be submitted electronically or by returning the blue sheet. We are looking forward to celebrating your success in a few weeks!

Support Catholic Education


Updates to the GRT fare card promotion

Fare Cards processed after September 1 are now preloaded with $25
Students currently attending a Cambridge high school and who have not previously taken part in this promotion are eligible to receive GRT’s EasyGO fare card pre-loaded with $25 in stored value (increased from last year to still be equivalent to 10 rides at the new 2019 high school reduced fare rate).

Students have until December 31, 2019 to take advantage of this promotion. More information can be found here:

New! Online Request Option for Parents and Students
In an effort to make getting the card easier, parents and students can now request a card by completing the online consent form available here:

The card, loaded with $25, will be sent directly to your high school for student pick up.
GRT Tap and ride

September 30: Orange Shirt Day

Orange Shirt Day is a day when we honour the Indigenous children who were sent away to residential schools in Canada and learn more about the history of those schools.The “orange shirt” in Orange Shirt Day refers to the new shirt that Phyllis Webstad was given to her by her grandmother for her first day of school at St. Joseph’s Mission residential school in British Columbia. When Phyllis arrived at school, they took away her clothes, including her new shirt. It was never returned. To Phyllis, the colour orange has always reminded her of her experiences at residential school and, as she has said, “how my feelings didn’t matter, how no one cared and I felt like I was worth nothing. All of us little children were crying and no one cared.”
The message that Phyllis wants to pass along on Orange Shirt Day — and every day — is that every child matters. Orange Shirt Day was started by Phyllis to educate people about residential schools and fight racism and bullying.During lunch on Friday in the atrium stop by and sign the banner in support of Every Child Matters AND on Monday September 30 wear an orange shirt to show support.


Enriching the Lives of Students

By Mrs. D. Wittmann
There many opportunities for students to enhance their learning experience: Enrichment courses, LEAP, OYAP, UCEP, Co-op, Home Build, SHSM, and Skills Canada. Visit the Enrichment blog for information on all these opportunities. The Blogroll contains a plethora of learning enhancements. To learn more about what we offer, click on Enrichment@St.Benedict.

English Corner

By Mrs. D. Wittmann
To receive an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) each student must obtain four credits in English (one credit per grade). Visit the English blog to read the course offerings provided by the Saint Benedict English Department. The Blogroll has great resources for both students and parents. Enjoy! English@St.Benedict blog.

Advanced Placement at St. Benedict

By Mrs. D. Wittmann
Advanced Placement (AP) is an internationally recognized program that allows students to enrich the Ontario Curriculum with the goal of achieving university accreditation.

What does the research say about AP students?
Research shows that the best predictor of whether or not a student completes a university degree is not their high school grades or standardized tests. Rather, the best predictor is how many challenging courses a student has taken in high school. Students who challenge themselves with AP courses and exams are much more likely to complete a university degree in four years or less.

Visit the Advanced Placement blog:

Fall and Halloween Crafts

Our ACTIVE and Community Living classes have been busy creating these amazing crafts to get everyone in the mood for the fall and Hallowe'en. Thanks to Mr. Briere and his staff for their dedication to this awesome group of students!

Are you signed up for SHSM?

Training opportunities are happening! Check your school email account for messages about upcoming certifications.
You can also go to and go under trips and trainings for your school and sector to see what is coming up.

Still want to become a Specialist High Skills Major student?

Grade 10’s and 11’s can still get registered for the program–forms are in guidance and the coop office (2nd floor).

Grade 11 SHSM students watch for an information meeting to be happening in a few weeks.


See your guidance counsellor or Mrs. Crowell in the co-op office.

Arts & Culture





Health & Wellness

Hospitality & Tourism

Info & Communications Tech

Justice, Emergency Services & Community Safety



High Skills

St. Benedict Library Learning Commons

Library staff extend a warm welcome back to all staff and students of St. Bennie's. We trust you had a wonderful summer and wish everyone a productive, successful first semester!

The Library opens every school day at 8am. A reminder to students that they are expected to be in uniform and there is no food allowed in the library during school hours.

Chrome books are available for loan at the Member Services desk. A valid Idea Exchange library card and St. Benedict student ID card are required.

From Idea Exchange, check out the following programs:
  • You can learn about Drones at the Queens Square library on Saturday September 28 with the Drone Basics for Teens. Learn about becoming a certified drone pilot and spend time flying a real drone!

All St. Benedict students should have an Idea Exchange library card.

This card allows you to access your school’s library databases and eBooks, and to sign out books and other materials from your Library Learning Commons. Printing is available from the library computers for a cost of 25 cents per side. Your school print credits cannot be used in the library.
If you aren’t sure if you have a library card or you have lost your card, please come to the member services desk.


Junior Boys Soccer starts week with a win

Congratulations to the Junior Boys soccer team for their 2-1 win against the Phoenix last night. The team went down by a goal late in the first half despite dominating the play up until that point. With some crafty substitutions and hard work, Kaden Dacosta scored the equalizer with his head in the 65th minute. Five minutes later the young Saints squad was making a late push for the lead with an extra attacker on the field. With blazing speed and a hard hit ball Spiros Goros pocketed the game wining goal in the 70th minute of the match. The Phoenix however, did not give up and it was the strong defensive play of Dylan and Morgan Mun along with Luciano Jardim that secured the teams second win of the season. Come out and support the junior FC this Wednesday on the front field as they take on our cross town rivals, the Mustangs!

Sports results

St. Mary's HS 41, St. Benedict CSS 35
St. Benedict CSS 50, Resurrection CSS 28
St. David CSS 34, St. Benedict CSS 29

St. Benedict CSS 49, St. Mary's HS 40
St. Benedict CSS 45, Resurrection CSS 41
St. Benedict CSS 56, St. David CSS 24

St. Benedict CSS 4, St. David CSS 0
St. Mary's HS 7, St. Benedict CSS 0
St. Benedict CSS 2, Resurrection CSS 1

Resurrection CSS 3, St. Benedict CSS 0
St. David CSS 3, St. Benedict CSS 1

St. Benedict CSS 3, St. Mary's HS 2
St. Benedict CSS 3, Resurrection CSS 1
St. Benedict CSS 3, St. David CSS 1

Senior Saints Football team falls in season opener

The Saints Senior Football team lost their opening game of District 8 play last Wednesday night to the Resurrection Phoenix by a score of 42-20. The Saints got down big early in the game but showed great heart and determination in outscoring their opponents 20-7 in the final 3 quarters. Touchdowns were scored by Eric Laffin, Jacob Kaminski and Alex Stewart. The defense was led by Bryn Palin and Noah Medeiros. The Saints are on the road for their next game on September 25th at 3pm against St. David's.

Junior Girls Basketball

Please congratulate the Junior Girls Basketball team on their first victory of the season last night against Resurrection, 50-28. It was a great team effort especially on the defensive side of the ball. Lily Vrugteman led all scorers again with 16 points.

Student Activities


Did you apply to be on Yearbook?

All Yearbook applicants please see Ms. Weiditch in Rm. 300 on Friday, September 27th for a brief meeting.

Attention Doctor Who Club members!

Normal meeting schedule resumes this Friday after school in room 226.

Lacrosse Club information meeting

Come learn how to play Lacrosse - all students are welcome. Meet this Friday at lunch in room 107 for details.

Model UN Club to start up

Mr. Riso and Mr. Meyer will be holding our first UN Club meeting in room 225 at lunch on Thursday this week. All students welcome!

The Arts

Calling All Artists!

Skills Ontario is calling all high school artists to put forward their best medal and/or pin design for the 2019/20 Skills Ontario competition.

Here's your opportunity to represent the St. Benedict community and potentially take home the $250 prize. View the following link for details and previous winners:

Good luck!

Other News

fasd presentation
Fall vendor market
St. Benedict's is hosting its third vendor market to raise funds for local and global social justice initiatives! Vendor spots are no longer available. Please email for more information.

Calendar of Events

Be sure to visit our school website for an updated calendar with detailed information links for most calendar entries.
Thursday, September 26
Opening School Mass
8:00am: Univ/Coll visit: Trent University
10:40am: Model UN Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
10:40am: MCU Club
11:30am: Univ/Coll visit: Georgian College
1:00pm: Boys Golf: CWOSSA Qualifier, Round 1
1:00pm: Boys Golf: CWOSSA Qualifier, Round 2
2:15pm: Band
6:30pm: Catholic Schools Adv Council Meeting

Friday, September 27
10:40am: Lacrosse Club information meeting
10:40am: Yearbook Team meeting
10:40am: Coders Club
1:45pm: Cross Country: Shades Mills
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Monday, September 30
8:00am: Orange Shirt Day
10:40am: Finance Club
10:40am: MCU Club
2:15pm: Choir
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Soccer @ St. David CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Girls Basketball vs Woodland CHS
3:30pm: Sr. Boys Volleyball @ Woodland CHS
3:30pm: Jr. Boys Volleyball @ Woodland CHS
4:30pm: Sr. Girls Basketball vs Woodland CHS

Tuesday, October 1
8:00am: Girls Golf: CWOSSA Championship
9:30am: Univ/Coll visit: Ivey Business at Western
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
10:40am: MCU Club

Wednesday, October 2
8:00am: Boys Golf: CWOSSA Championship
10:40am: Cosmo Club
10:40am: Spoken Word Club
10:40am: MarioKart Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Magic the Gathering club
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Soccer vs St. Mary's HS
3:00pm: Sr. Boys Volleyball vs Our Lady of Mount Carmel
3:00pm: Sr. Girls Basketball @ Msgr Doyle CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Volleyball vs Msgr Doyle CSS

Thursday, October 3
8:00am: Univ/Coll visit: U of W & St. Jerome's
10:40am: Model UN Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
10:40am: MCU Club
1:00pm: Jr Boys Football at St. Mary's HS
2:15pm: Band
3:00pm: Sr Boys Football at St. Mary's HS

Friday, October 4
8:00am: Univ/Coll visit: University of W.Ontario
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club
3:30pm: Sr. Boys Volleyball @ Rockway MC
3:30pm: Jr. Boys Volleyball @ Rockway MC
6:00pm: University Info Program Night at Jacob Hespeler
Saturday, October 5
World Teachers' Day
8:00am: Cross Country: Run for the Toad

Monday, October 7
Mental Health Awareness Week
10:40am: Finance Club
10:40am: MCU Club
12:50pm: Univ/Coll visit: Mohawk College
2:15pm: Choir
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Soccer vs Resurrection CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Girls Basketball vs St. Mary's HS
3:30pm: Jr. Boys Volleyball @ St. Mary's HS
3:30pm: Sr. Boys Volleyball @ St. Mary's HS
4:30pm: Sr. Girls Basketball vs St. Mary's HS

Tuesday, October 8
Mental Health Awareness Week
9:30am: Univ/Coll visit: Huron College (U of Western Ontario)
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
10:40am: MCU Club

Wednesday, October 9
Mental Health Awareness Week
BENN Newsletter release
8:00am: Tennis: District 8 Championship
10:40am: Cosmo Club
10:40am: Spoken Word Club
10:40am: MarioKart Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
1:00pm: Jr Boys Football vs St. David CSS
2:15pm: Magic the Gathering club
3:00pm: Sr Boys Football vs St. David CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Soccer @ Monsignor Doyle CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Boys Volleyball @ St. David CSS
3:00pm: Sr. Girls Basketball vs St. David CSS
3:00pm: Sr. Boys Volleyball @ St. David CSS
4:30pm: Jr. Girls Basketball vs St. David CSS

Thursday, October 10
Mental Health Awareness Week
8:00am: Girls Golf: D8 Championship
8:00am: Boys Golf: D8 Championship
10:30am: Cross Country: Waterloo District Invitational
10:40am: Model UN Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
10:40am: MCU Club
2:15pm: Band
3:00pm: Sr. Girls Basketball vs Rockway MC
4:30pm: Jr. Girls Basketball vs Rockway MC
7:00pm: Academic Awards Night

Friday, October 11
Mental Health Awareness Week
8:15am: Univ/Coll visit: Wilfrid Laurier University
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Check out the calendar on the school website for the most up-to-date information and schedules!

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