Wednesday, November 6, 2019 - Volume 12, Issue 7

Report Cards distributed today!

This morning in period 1, students got their report cards. If they do not have a period 1 class or were absent today, they can pick up their report cards in the Main Office.

This would be a good opportunity for you to discuss your son's or daughter's progress and to look at what he or she needs to do to continue down a successful path towards the completion of the semester. Of particular note, please look at the student's lates and absences to see if there is any concern that needs to be address. Please refer to the article below.

If you have any questions or concerns, you can always contact your son's or daughter's teachers, administrator, or guidance counsellor.


At this time of year, we invite you to reflect on your child’s progress at school. We also invite to you review the number of absences and lates your child has to date which you will find in the top right-hand corner of their report card.

We know that children who attend school on a regular basis are more successful in many other areas of their lives. Regular attendance at school increases opportunities for growth. We encourage you and your child to stay on the path to success because Attendance Matters. Please be in touch with us if you need support in improving your child’s attendance.

RED LIGHT: 10+ days absent or late

Please make an appointment with your child’s teacher to
discuss attendance as your child’s success may be at risk.

YELLOW LIGHT: 5+ days absent or late

Proceed with caution – if there is a way for the school to help
improve attendance, please contact us and let’s talk!

GREEN LIGHT: under 5 days absent or late

Stay on the path to success at school!

5 Things you Need to Know about School Attendance

The lowest performing students around the world miss more school than their academically successful schoolmates.
School attendance is critical to student's academic success but more importantly research shows that low performance at school, generally leads to a more difficult life with less access to good jobs.
School absenteeism from a young age has significant negative consequences that can last a lifetime.
Research indicates that absenteeism as young as JK is associated with negative grade outcomes, greater absenteeism in the future, as well as, lower student achievement in math, reading and general knowledge.
Any student who misses a school day misses an opportunity to learn.

What can Parents do?

Parents can improve school attendance rates by helping their children arrive at school on time every day, following school timetables, locating sources of school anxiety that may make their children want to skip school and planning ahead to minimize absences.
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Uniform Reminder

With the colder weather upon us, we would like to remind parents/students about our uniform policy at St. Benedict. The only item to be worn under a uniform top is a plain white, or navy blue short/long sleeved crew neck shirt. No hoodies or sweatshirts are to be worn under a uniform top at any time of the school year. If students are unable to be in proper uniform, they will be asked to work in the Main Office.

Community Supports for the Holiday Season

Christmas is a time for family and a time of joy and celebration. It can also be stressful.

The Community Outreach Program can help link families with supports and resources, such as Financial/Food Supports, Grief and Coping over the holidays, and subsidies for Children’s Recreation Programs. For more information call (519) 742-8327 ext. 240 or email

Support is also available from the Self Help Foodbank, call (519) 622-6550 to see if you qualify.

If you or someone you love is feeling overwhelmed and hopeless over the holidays and you don’t know where to turn, call HERE 24/7 1 (844) 437 3247,

Sensitive Santa

Is your child sensory sensitive? If so, they can still have a visit with Santa through the Sensitive Santa program.
This sensory friendly environment provides lower lighting and a quieter surrounding. Each family that attends will receive a complimentary photo with Santa to commemorate this magical holiday season.
This special time to visit with Santa is reserved for children with social, emotional or behavioral needs.
To keep this event sensory friendly and organized, we ask that each family
Register in advance. Space is limited.
Please contact or call (519) 740-4680 ext. 4292 to register.
Help us spread the word about this magical Holiday Event!

News from Guidance

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

Are you considering volunteering at St. Benedict?

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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.

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


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:

Grade 9s and 10s up for the Computing Challenge

By Mr. A. Milardovic

On Wednesday, November 13 over one hundred and forty grade 9 and 10 students put their logic and problem-solving skills to the test and participated in the University of Waterloo's Beaver Computing Challenge. The contest--run internationally--is comprised of fifteen multiple choice questions of varying degrees of difficulty which relate to programming concepts. There is no coding involved, but a strong sense of problem-solving is required to answer some of the questions.
This is the first time St. Benedict has participated in the Beaver, and we are enthusiastic about the large number of students who participated! Results should be available within the next few weeks..

Students who enjoyed the contest should consider joining Coding Club if they are interested in programming, and thing about taking the ICS 3U Introduction to Computer Science or ICS 3C Introduction to Computer Programming course when they make their course selections.

Many thanks to Mr. Anderton, Mrs. Brennan, Ms. Gonzalez-Day, and Mr. Szpiech for getting their math and computer classes involved!

For more information about the Beaver contest, check out their page on the University of Waterloo's website.

Co-operative Career Fair coming up

Please join us in the atrium on Monday, December 9 between 10am and 12pm for our Co-op career fair. Meet with students to find out about their experiences this semester.

We will also be joined by :
  • Volunteer Action Centre: Find out about local volunteer opportunities
  • Youth Job Connect: Discuss their school year and summer programs.
    • This program is ideal if you are a student, 15 – 18 and need some help to find a summer job or part-time work during the school year. Youth Job Connection Summer offers:
      • Minimum 20 hours of paid participation in employment related workshops
      • • 1:1 coaching and support to identify interests and increase job search skills
      • • Paid job placements with local employers, to gain exposure and hands on experience
      • • Assistance with work related costs such as clothing and transportation
  • Specialist High Skills Major Board staff: Ask any questions or get more info about SHSM

Are you looking for your SHSM information?

Do you know that all the trainings, confirmation pages, and progress reports are sent to your school email account? It is very important to check your school email account regularly. If you think there are any errors in your progress report, please see Mrs. Crowell in the co-op office.

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.

Arts & Culture





Health & Wellness

Hospitality & Tourism

Info & Communications Tech

Justice, Emergency Services & Community Safety





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

St. Benedict Library Learning Commons


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.


Winter sports are about to start up!

Watch the calendar on the school website in the coming weeks to see when regular season games begin.

Sports results

St. Benedict CSS 3, St. Mary's HS 1

Resurrection CSS 27, St. Benedict CSS 7

Senior Boys Volleyball wrap-up

Congratulations to the Sr. boys volleyball team for an outstanding 18-2 season! The team competed at CWOSSA recently and made it to the semi-finals. There they played the tournament favourites, Grand River Collegiate. In an intense battle to 3 sets, your Saints demonstrated amazing physical and mental play, securing their place later that night in the CWOSSA finals! The team was pumped but their great play was outdone by WCI who took the win. Thank you all who took the time and were able to make it our to support the team - your energy, cheers and support were so greatly appreciated. Please congratulate your back to back D8 champs and CWOSSA finalists!

Former Saint Football Player Shining at McMaster

Josh Cumber was never the biggest player on the field, but he always had the biggest heart! The 5-time District 8 All-Star and captain of the Saints football team from 2013-2017 just completed an incredible season for the McMaster Marauders. As a 2nd year player, Josh started every game for the Marauders at the defensive back position and played a huge role in their Yates Cup victory over the mighty Western Mustangs. In the Yates Cup, Josh had an interception, forced fumble and several key tackles. Although McMaster's season ended with a loss to the University of Calgary Dinos in the Mitchell Bowl, St. Benedict is proud of Josh's accomplishments and look forward to celebrating many more successes with him in the future.
Check out this feature on Josh on CHCH TV.

Student Activities

The Social Justice sector on SAC is super excited to bring their many new ideas to the school community in these coming months. This past month Social Justice aided with the school wide food drive for our community. Social Justice will soon be putting up a brand new bulletin board in the school themed around a “superhero”. These “superheroes” will be inspirational role models that could be from our community or anywhere in the world! We are so excited to show the St. Benedict's community all we have been working on and are looking forward to another successful month this year!


Champions for Change looking for winter wear to help less fortunate

The Champions for Change committee has asked that teachers engage their classes in a challenge to collect hats, mittens, gloves, scarves and socks for the homeless and less fortunate in Cambridge. Donations will be collected in the big box in the atrium.

We hope to have these donations delivered to Trinity Community Table by November 29th.
Thank you so much for your support!

Eco Club update for the season

As we prepare for the Christmas season, Bennie's Eco Club has some great activities planned and lots of Eco tips for the environmentally conscious individuals!
In early December, the Eco Club will be giving away FREE hot chocolate at lunch for anyone who brings in a reusable mug. We will also be hosting an Eco-friendly gift wrapping session at lunch mid-December. Stay tuned for the dates for these two events and follow the Eco Club on Instagram: bennies_eco_club.

Christmas Eco Tips:

  1. Use LED Christmas lights
  2. Instead of wrapping paper (which is NOT recyclable), use Eco-friendly gift wrap like newspaper, brown paper, cloth (table cloths, scarves), etc.
  3. Make your own Christmas cards using recycled paper and materials
  4. Instead of buying gifts, make a donation on someone's behalf (eg. towards planting trees, donate to an organization like Friends of the Earth)
  5. When buying gifts, choose companies that are Eco-friendly (eg. Ten Tree plants 10 trees for every article of clothing that you buy!)
Have an amazing November and December and join the Eco Club on Mondays at lunch in room 300 to be part of the solution!

The Arts




December 5, 6 and 7

Shows at 7:00 pm nightly, matinee show at 2:00 on Saturday

Tickets go on sale on School Cash Online on Thursday, November 21 at noon

Other News


Chaplin Family YMCA Teen Drop in Zone

The YMCA Teen Drop in Zone is a safe place for teenagers age 13-19 to come together and enjoy the space for free and without a membership. In the Teen Zone, there is a variety of fun activities that youth can participate in including pool and ping-pong matches, jam sessions in the music room, games in the lounge room, and basketball in the gym. There are some programs run through the Teen Zone such as Dinnertime on Wednesdays, Girls Group on Thursdays, and ‘Flix Fridays. Other programs require registration such as the Just Hangin’ Out program for youth with special needs and the Newcomer Youth program for newcomers to Canada. Visit the Chaplin Family YMCA for more information and to hang out!

Chaplin Family YMCA Newcomer Youth Program

The Newcomer Youth Program is a 10-week program for newcomers to Canada. During these 10 weeks, registered youth have opportunities to participate in recreational activities, build leadership skills, connect with their community, and make friends from a variety of cultural backgrounds. This program is for teenagers ages 12-21 and runs on Fridays from 5:00-7:00pm. Registration for the new year starts soon! For more information, email or visit the Teen Zone in the Chaplin YMCA building.

Calendar of Events

Be sure to visit our school website for an updated calendar with detailed information links for most calendar entries.
Thursday, November 21
Bullying Awareness Week
9:30am: SHSM Training: Food Handling part 2
9:30am: SHSM Training: Event Management
9:30am: Univ/Coll visit: Laurentian University
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band

Friday, November 22
Bullying Awareness Week
9:30am: Univ/Coll visit: Redeemer University
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Monday, November 25
10:40am: Fresh Club
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Finance Club
2:15pm: Choir

Tuesday, November 26
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
11:30am: Reconciliation

Wednesday, November 27
8:00am: Arts & Tech Day
9:00am: SHSM Training: Creative Arts & Humanities Day @ U of G
10:40am: Eco Club
10:40am: Model UN Club
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

Thursday, November 28
9:00am: SHSM Training: Chainsaw Safety
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band
6:30pm: Catholic Schools Advisory Council Meeting

Friday, November 29
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club
Sunday, December 1
First Sunday of Advent

Monday, December 2
10:40am: Fresh Club
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Finance Club
2:15pm: Choir

Tuesday, December 3
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team

Wednesday, December 4
BENN Newsletter release
10:40am: Eco Club
10:40am: Model UN Club
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

Thursday, December 5
9:00am: SHSM Training: Massage Techniques
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club
7:00pm: Beauty and the Beast

Friday, December 6
Professional Activity Day
7:00pm: Beauty and the Beast

Saturday, December 7
2:00pm: Beauty and the Beast
7:00pm: Beauty and the Beast

Sunday, December 8
Second Sunday of Advent

See the calendar on the school website for the most up-to-date information!

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