Wednesday, February 5, 2020 - Volume 12, Issue 13

A Message from Administration

Welcome to Semester 2!

The following information was shared with homeroom classes this week as we started our second semester. We thank you in advance for your support of St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School Students and Staff:
  • The start of a new academic semester is a wonderful opportunity to reset our goals – Academic, Pathway and Personal goals – what can we do to improve on our first semester results?
  • Attendance is critical to your success – we know students do better academically when they are in class
  • Unless you have a medical reason, washroom breaks are not a right, please do not abuse the privilege as you will be missing valuable instructional time
  • Keeping our community safe is our number one priority and the uniform assists us with this, the basic expectation for uniform is a crested golf shirt and crested pants or shorts, we currently have a limited selection of extra uniform pieces so it is incumbent upon you to come to school in complete uniform. You are not permitted to be in class or our school if you are not in complete uniform.
  • Please continue to be a good community neighbour especially while you are at the plaza at lunch, this includes crossing safely and respectfully.
  • We are a Smoke free/Vape free facility – if you choose to vape or smoke in a bathroom or anywhere on site you will receive a 1-day suspension and possibly a $305 Public Health fine
  • At St. Benedict we are proud to offer a quality, inclusive faith-based environment where everyone has the right to come to school and feel safe and respected. If you ever do not feel this way all you have to do is speak with an adult and we will assist you
Finally, as we continue to navigate some disruptions due to job action, we offer our support and prayers for all our community members involved and continue to hope a resolution is just around the corner.
Thank you and have a wonderful second semester!

Registration is Open: It’s Time to Sign Up for School!!

By WCDSB NewsWire

It’s time to sign up for the 2020-21 school year – and registering to attend one of Waterloo Region’s 43 Catholic elementary schools and five Catholic secondary schools has never been easier. In fact, a quality, inclusive, faith-based education is just a click away for families of Kindergarten students thanks to the Waterloo Catholic District School Board’s Online Registration system.


~~ Parents can access the Online Registration form by clicking on the Register for School link on the WCDSB Homepage and then choosing either Kindergarten Registration, Elementary Registration or Secondary Registration. The link to Online Registration can be found on each page under the “Registration Options”
~~ Children born in 2016 are eligible for Year 1 Kindergarten (JK).
~~ Children born in 2015 are eligible for Year 2 Kindergarten (SK).
~~ When registering your child to attend a Catholic elementary school you must be prepared to provide proof of the child’s date of birth and either the child’s Catholic baptismal certificate or the Catholic baptismal certificate of at least one parent or guardian.
~~ If you are non-Catholic, but wish to explore a Catholic education for your child(ren), please review the WCDSB Admissions to Catholic Elementary Schools policy. Our secondary schools are open to students of all faiths.
~~ A complete list of WCDSB schools that will offer the Extended Day Program in 2020-21 will be web-posted in April, 2020. Please call your school directly for information about the Extended Day Program. A complete list of WCDSB schools currently providing the program is available via this link: Extended Day Program.
~~ For information about French Immersion programs in Kitchener, Waterloo and Cambridge, please click here: French Immersion Registration Information.
The Waterloo Catholic District School Board, representing more than 96,000 Catholic school supporters, operates 48 schools and five adult education facilities serving more than 40,000 elementary, secondary and continuing education students in Waterloo Region – continuing a 184-year tradition of quality, inclusive, faith-based education. Follow us on Twitter: @WCDSBNewswire – #WCDSBAwesome.


grad photos

Times now available for February 11!

Sign up today!

And once you get grad photos taken care of....

Are you a grade 12 student who is planning to graduate this year? If so, make sure you turn your fees and grad form into guidance no later than February 20th! We need this information ASAP so we can order your gown. If you have any questions, see Mrs. Spitzig in room 307!
man w transparency

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.

Bus Delays Information

Does your child take a yellow school bus to school? Would you like to receive updates on bus delays and cancellations? If so, please visit and click on "Delays & Cancellations" on the top right hand corner. Then click on "Subscriptions". Enter your email address, and you will be able to sign-up for text message alerts which will notify you if your child's bus is running late.

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

Course Selections for 2020 - 2021

We have visited with all students in grade 9, 10 and 11 and started the process of course selections. As we move into semester 2 it is a good time to continue research and have conversations about your choices for the next school year.

Grade 12 students who are interested in returning to St. Benedict for a 5th year will be invited to attend a lunch session at a date to be determined.

The decisions that students make now regarding their choices for next year are what drive the scheduling decisions that are made with regard to both the courses and the numbers of sections of each course that we offer at the school next year. The importance of making the right choices should not be underestimated as inappropriate course changes are not always easily corrected once the school year is underway.

As has been the practice for the past number of years, students will be choosing their courses on-line.

All students should have received detailed instructions regarding the process for choosing their classes during presentations. The site can be accessed as follows:
  1. Go www.
  2. Login using your school login or GAFE account login
Please note that course selections must be submitted to the school and signed by a parent, by Friday February 28th. Students are encouraged to consult the course calendar on the website, as well as subject specific teachers and guidance counsellors for help making the correct decisions. In addition to before school, after school and during the school day, guidance counsellors will also be available in room 111 during lunch on specific days leading up to the deadline date.

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) and Course Selection

All students who are registered in one of the Specialist High Skills Major programs will receive a report
which indicates their progress in their sector of choice. Students should use this report to make sure that they choose courses for next year which will allow them to complete the SHSM academic requirements.

Summer E-learning through St. Louis

Registration for Summer School day or E-learning courses is now available through Waterloo Catholic District School board’s St. Louis Adult Learning & Continuing Education Centre. Please visit their website for a list of courses and how to register.

SUMMER E-learning Careers/Civics Travel Credit

Travel and complete credits at the same time! An e-learning course - 12 days online + 7 day trip (2 days Ottawa, 2 days Montreal, 4 days New York City) – Cost is approximately $1800.
Interested in registering for an opportunity of a lifetime? Click the link below! Civics and Careers in Canada and the US

WHERE: Ottawa, Montreal and New York
TRAVEL DATES: July 22nd – 28th 2019

Spots are very limited, and enrollment will be on a first come, first-serve basis – don’t miss your chance!

Any questions regarding the tour, and payments please contact our Travel for Credit team at or give us a call at 1-800-263-2806. Questions regarding the course, materials or credits can be directed to Judy Carley at the Board.

K-W Legacy Scholarship

The Legacy Scholarship Program was established to provide exemplary students with meaningful financial assistance for their pursuit of post-secondary education. Recipients of a Legacy scholarship will be leaders who create footprints, citizens who pay tribute to others, and individuals who enjoy fellowship with other members of the community.

Legacy Scholarship requirements
In order to qualify for a Legacy Scholarship, applicants must meet the following requirements:
  • Attend a post-secondary institution that is approved by the Ontario Student Assistance Program
  • Have a minimum cumulative average of 70% in their top six 12 M/U courses
  • Demonstrate financial need
Student wishing to apply for the KW Legacy Scholarship should speak to their Guidance counsellor.
Applications should be received in Guidance by February 16th.

The Carol Shantz Bursary Endowment Fund was established to assist a client or an alumnus of KidsAbility Centre for Child Development to further their education at a provincially recognized college, university, or community or vocational institution in Canada offering a degree or certificate.
The award recognizes an individual who, through effort and perseverance, is seeking to realize their potential by pursuing post-secondary education.

Value of Bursary: One bursary valued at a minimum of $1,000 will be awarded annually.

Deadline: Completed applications and all supporting documents must be received by KidsAbility Foundation no later than 4:30pm on May 15, 2020. Incomplete applications or applications received after 4:30pm on May 15, 2020 will not be considered.

University of Waterloo Grade 10 Family Night

The University of Waterloo will be hosting an evening for Grade 10 students and their parents on Thursday February 20 from 6:00 – 8:30 PM. This is a great opportunity for grade 10 students who are thinking about attending any of Ontario’s universities. Information covered will include finding a program that is a good fit, navigating the application process, and financing post-secondary education. Register to attend

Community Service Hours

It is a requirement of graduation that each student complete 40 hours of community service. There are
many opportunities to fulfill this requirement. If you have already registered for Hour Republic check out the
guidelines on the website This website can also be used to track your hours and
see volunteer opportunities.

Plans for the 8th Annual Kick4aCure Charitable Soccer Tournament are well underway. The tournament is in support of the Grand River Hospital Foundation.
Student volunteers can receive up to 12 hours for their help with this event through pre-placement planning and set-up as well as game day experience.
Please visit their website for more information.

Job Posting

Mennonite Furniture is looking for a student to work Saturday 9am – 4:30pm.
Responsible for:
· Selling furniture
· Loading up furniture into customers' vehicles
· Cleaning the finishing room area
Please email a resume to:

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.

Interested in the Service Learning Program for next year?

There will be a parent information meeting on Tuesday February 11 at 6:30 in the Lecture Hall. See Mrs. Rocha If you have questions.

Need a quiet space after school to get some homework done?
Perhaps some extra support to help prepare for Exams!

All students are welcome to the

Literacy Lab Homework Club


Every Wednesday & Thursday from 2:15-3:30pm.

Hope to see you there!

Support Catholic Education


The WCDSB is Hiring!

The Waterloo Catholic District School Board is hiring Teachers. Teachers, please apply via Apply to Education. For open opportunities, please check the Careers page on, or visit

Nominations Open for WCDSB Distinguished Graduate, Community Partner & Chair’s Awards

By WCDSB NewsWire

Nominations are now open for the annual WCDSB “Distinguished Graduate Award”, “Community Partner Award” and “Chair’s Award”. Information about the awards (including the Distinguished Graduate Award nomination form) is available HERE. There are no nomination forms for the Community Partner and Chair’s Awards.
If you wish to make a nomination in any of the categories, please submit your rationale in writing along with any supporting documentation you feel appropriate, to Alice Figueiredo by Monday, March 2, 2020. Hard copy or emailed nominations are equally acceptable. Alice can be reached via email at

Distinguished Graduate Award

The Distinguished Graduate Award was established in 2005 under the Board’s “Celebration of Excellence” policy. It is presented annually to a graduate of 10 or more years from Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools who has provided an outstanding example of the Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations in action. The award is presented at the graduation exercises of the recipient’s Secondary School or another appropriate public venue.

Community Partner Award

The Community Partner Award is presented annually in recognition of outstanding contributions made to Waterloo Region’s Catholic Schools by a community partner or agency serving the students, staff and greater community of Waterloo Region.

Chair’s Award

The Chair’s Award is presented to a person (or group of people) in the school system who has contributed significantly to Catholic Education. It is given annually in recognition of outstanding contributions made in serving the students, staff and greater community of Waterloo Region and/or to the betterment of Catholic Education in Ontario in general.


Enriching the Lives of Students

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

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.

Phys-Ed Blue Mountain Ski Trip

By Mr. N. Dufresne

All students who have taken or are presently taking a Phys-ed course this year are eligible to go on our annual ski/snowboard trip to Blue Mountain. The trip is on Friday February 28th. The $65.00 cost includes return trip by highway motor coach, lift ticket and lesson. Ski, snowboard and helmet rentals are $15 extra! All students interested must pick up a registration package from the PHE office and have their forms and money submitted no later than February 21st. Spaces are limited so don’t delay.

New Programming Course Offered for Grade 10!

The Business and Computer Studies department is excited to announce a new programming course being offered in 2020 for grade 10s. With sufficient enrollment, we hope to offer the ICS 2O Introduction to Computer Studies course.

From the Ministry curriculum document for the course: "This course introduces students to computer programming. Students will plan and write simple computer programs by applying fundamental programming concepts and learn to create clear and maintainable internal documentation. They will also learn to manage a computer by studying hardware configurations, software selection, operating system functions, networking, and safe computing practices. Students will also investigate the social impact of computer technologies and develop an understanding of environmental and ethical issues related to the use of computers."

Students who are considering a career in the computer industry can use this course as an opportunity to see what programming is about before taking the grade 11 and 12 ICS courses. "I think it's great for students thinking of taking a computer co-op or getting into the Information and Communication Technology High Skills path," says Mr. Milardovic, one of our school's computer teachers, "Students with an actual coding course under their belt before engaging in co-op in grade 11 or 12 will definitely have an advantage in the field."

Not only will students cover the curriculum, but they will also get the opportunity to participate in computer contests and challenges in order to further develop their programming skills.

Students who are interested in the course should see Mr. Milardovic in the business workroom or room 216 at lunch or after school; parents can email Mr. Milardovic for more information.

NEW this summer – Civics and Careers e-Learning Travel Credit

By WCDSB Pathways Office

This summer, the WCDSB is piloting an exciting opportunity for our students entering Gr. 10 to complete the Civics (.5 credit) and Careers (.5 credit) online and then extend their learning with a one-week trip to Ottawa, Montreal and New York City.

Timeline includes a mandatory face-to-face meeting June 30; digital course work July 6 -21st; travel July 22-28th.

Travel arranged through EF Tours – Click here for itinerary details.

Information, including the registration code, can be obtained from Judy Carley – WCDSB Pathways: or by calling 519-578-3660 x.2485.

Communications Corner

By Mrs. C. Friedrich

Did you know that the Communications Department consists of English, French, and Spanish classes? Over the next few weeks you will see some additions to the Language and Communications page of the school website. We will be moving away from the blog format and we will be creating an information page to help students and parents navigate courses offered through the Communications Department. We will provide useful tips, links, and pertinent information.

Course selections will be taking place very soon. The Communications Department has a wide selection of choices and there is a suitable course for each student. We offer courses to prepare students for each of the pathways.

We are currently in our second year of offering Advanced Placement Grade 12 University English (ENG4UE). This course is a continuation of the Pre-AP courses offered in Grades 9 - 11. Students enrolled in AP English do not do more work than students enrolled in Grade 12 University (ENG4U) - their learning and critical thinking skills are developed to help them pursue successful post-secondary academic careers. Click here for more information about AP and University Admissions in Canada.

Do you see Sector Partner Contextualized Component (SPCC) on your compulsory certifications?

Here is more information about that, from the Ministry of Education
  • This required component includes one of the following options: Innovation Creativity and Entrepreneurship (ICE) training, coding and mathematical literacy.
  • The Sector-Partnered Contextualized Component will require an approximately 6-hour activity, delivered with a sector partner and have an experiential and an assessment component.
Semester 2 we will be offering some full day sessions with an outside provider to help students complete this requirement.
Or if you are doing something with an outside partner through school or the community (think ICE Challenge, APPS for Learning, E-car, Robotics competitions, Programming contests, DECA, Mock UN, Drama Festival, HOSA competition, Art Battle Stock competition, Skills Canada) this could count.
See Mrs. Crowell in the co-op office (2nd floor) for a form to complete and check to see if it will meet this requirement.

Arts & Culture





Health & Wellness

Hospitality & Tourism

Info & Communications Tech

Justice, Emergency Services & Community Safety




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.


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

Specialist High Skills Major News

All SHSM students are asked to check their progress report when choosing courses for next year. Their latest report will be emailed to them so it is very important to check your school email account regularly.

A reminder that students going into grade 12 will be removed from the program next fall if they are not on track with all of their courses. Training opportunities are starting to appear so check your email and to check these out and get registered.

If you have questions about your progress report or trainings/certifications please see Mrs. Crowell in the Co-op office on the second floor.


Sports results

St. Benedict CSS 70, St. David CSS 55

St. Benedict CSS 51, St. David CSS 36

St. Benedict CSS 3, Monsignor Doyle CSS 2

Student Activities


Club update for semester 2

  • The U.N. Club will resume meeting every Wednesday at lunch in room 225. New members are welcome.
  • Magic the Gathering will resume meeting every Wednesday after school in room 227. Our first week will introduce the new set, Theros Beyond Death. New members are welcome.
  • MCU Club will resume this semester but we will now be meeting every Tuesday and Thursday in room 227 at lunch.
  • Attention Doctor Who Club members: meetings resume this Friday, with new episodes of the 13th Doctor & the February prize raffle. Join us Friday, after school, in 226. New members are welcome.
  • Interested in trying out Rock Climbing? Bennie's Rock Climbing Club meets every Thursday STARTING THIS WEEK. February 6th is our first trip to the climbing gym. There's no experience necessary and we have expert coaches ready to help all levels. To join, see Mr. Porto in the math office. Spaces are limited so act fast!
  • Attention Athletes! If you are interested in pushing some weight and adding strength to your game, join us on Tuesdays and Wednesdays after school in the weight room. See Coach Vale in the Phys.Ed. office for a permission form!
  • Ever wonder if you could solve a Rubik's Cube? Did you ever want to learn how to solve it quickly? Or, maybe you're already an expert and want to race others. Bennie's Rubik's Cube Club is now running every Tuesday at lunch time in Room 203. Come on out and bring a friend!

ACE Robotics team presents: Safety at Home

By Christina Rawson

Hey there saints! The ACE robotics team has some super rad safety tips to keep you and your home safe. Fire safety is very important in a home and these are just some tips for you to remember:

Fire prevention:
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen
  • Install smoke detectors, check them every month, and ensure you are changing the batteries twice a year
Stay safe saints! :)

The Green Bins are here!

In case students are wondering where the nearest green bin is...
  • in the staff room
  • 1st floor atrium by the old library entrance
  • 2nd floor atrium by the other garbage
  • 3rd floor by the elevators
  • in the cafeteria
  • by the gym
Several classrooms have also asked for containers, so smaller ones have been placed in those rooms.

Thank you for doing your part to protect the Earth and the environment!

The Arts

Other News

Hours of Operation- Winter
Winter 2020 Steam
YWH Art @ the Hub
Anxiety Workshop-February

Calendar of Events

Be sure to visit our school website for an updated calendar with detailed information links for most calendar entries.
Wednesday, February 5
BENN Newsletter release
2:15pm: Magic the Gathering club
3:00pm: Sr. Girls Volleyball vs St. Mary's HS
3:00pm: Sr. Boys Basketball @ Msgr Doyle CSS
3:00pm: Jr. Girls Volleyball vs St. Mary's HS
4:30pm: Jr. Boys Basketball @ Msgr Doyle CSS

Thursday, February 6
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: DECA Business Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band
2:15pm: Sr. Boys Hockey @ St. Mary's HS
4:30pm: Novice Boys Basketball @ Resurrection
5:30pm: Novice Boys Basketball @ St. Mary's HS

Friday, February 7
8:00am: Wrestling: Bluevale Tournament
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Monday, February 10
Course Change Deadline
10:40am: Fresh Club
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Finance Club
2:15pm: Choir

Tuesday, February 11
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:00pm: Sr. Boys Hockey vs St. David CSS

Wednesday, February 12
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, February 13
8:00am: Semester 1 Report Card Distributed
8:00am: Wrestling: District 8 Championships
9:00am: SHSM Training: Infection Control
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band
2:30pm: Sr. Boys Hockey vs Resurrection CSS
3:00pm: Novice Boys Basketball vs St. David
5:00pm: Novice Boys Basketball vs Resurrection
Friday, February 14
Valentine's Day
SAC Valentine's Celebration
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Saturday, February 15
National Flag of Canada Day

Monday, February 17
Family Day Holiday

Tuesday, February 18
10:40am: Arts Council
10:40am: Champions for Change Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team

Wednesday, February 19
BENN Newsletter release
8:00am: Wrestling: CWOSSA Championships
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, February 20
Photo Retakes
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Chess Club
10:40am: Racing Saints E-Car Team
2:15pm: Band

Friday, February 21
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Coders Club
2:15pm: Doctor Who Video Club

Monday, February 24
10:40am: Fresh Club
10:40am: MCU Club
10:40am: Finance Club
2:15pm: Choir

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

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