St John status update

InsideToronto had an excellent article explaining the progress of St John the Evangelist toward getting a new school and toward their temporary relocation in short, the money still hasn’t come for a new school and there are some minor concerns with the soil quality, but the move is going along as expected.

“I’m a little disappointed that a top priority school couldn’t get complete funding,” said Dave Bennett, chair of St. John the Evangelist’s Catholic School Advisory Council (CSAC).

St John gets approval for new school from TCDSB

Long-suffering students at St John the Evangelist got one huge step closer to a new school today. The Toronto Catholic District School Board approved a new school instead of an addition or another half measure. 

St John needs a new school terribly. The present location is overcrowded and has little green space. Parents have been pleading to have a new school built on the present grounds while the train line is being installed so that the students will face as little disruption as possible–they are already being forced to move to another school quite far away while construction is ongoing. 

The Ministry of Education is still reviewing the ‘business case’ for a new school, but has promised $6.5 million: enough money for an addition and full-day kindergarten. 

One more big push for St John

It’s a make-or-break day for St John the Evangelist elementary school. Tonight the Catholic School Board trustees will decide whether St John gets a new school as the train line gets built.

St John is terribly over crowded—there is so little space that classes are held in a nearby church basement. Construction of the ARL will also force the students to move next school year.

Dave Bennett, Chair of the Parent Council, is pleading for people to come out and show their support. If you make it to the school before 5:45 pm, you can catch a ride. If you plan on going directly, the board meeting will be at 80 Sheppard Ave E, and will start at 7 pm.

Events for the week of December 4

St John the Evangelist community meeting

The school board will be holding a community meeting at St John the Evangelist school on Tuesday, December 6th at 7pm.

Agenda – The board will be updating our community on all temporary accommodation options for students considered by staff.

CSAC will have a table in the Gym to help answer concerns and to gather more emails in an effort to advocate for a replacement school, not just an addition to our 1953 building which already has an addition.


Weston Historical Society Hymn Sing


Navigating the University and College Application Process: a Presentation by the Toronto Employment & Social Services

Applying to a university or college can be competitive and complex.
Universities usually receive more applications than they can accept.

This information session will:

  • describe the university and college application process, including information about application
  • deadlines and fees
  • discuss the various financial supports available, such as Second Career and ASETS
  • explain how to get your post secondary transcripts

For more information or to register, please call 416 394-1016 or register in person

Thursday, December 8th
Toronto Public Library, Weston Branch
2 King Street

Post-Secondary Application Deadline is coming. Register for a FREE information session today!

UrbanArts Winter Expo

The Winter Expo is an exhibition of dance, music, spoken word and visual arts created by the participants in our After School Arts Programs, as well as other artists in the community.

The expo will be December 8 at 6 pm, the LEF at 1267 Weston Road.


Neighbourhood Arts Toronto

The community meeting is our stepping off point where we will ask questions and learn more about Weston and Mt. Dennis’ creative scene.  The meeting will be a good opportunity for participants to hear more about what’s happening in their local area and will help us better understand how people value the arts. There will be food and we promise to make it fun!

Meeting details

Place: Weston Library, 2 King Street

We want to know:

  • How do people participate in the arts? By this we mean all kinds of art forms including music, dance, spoken word, media arts, poetry, visual arts, hip hop, theatre, crafts, photography, painting, murals  and mash ups of all the above.
  • What goes on in places dedicated to the arts like galleries and theatres but also what gets created in homes, courtyards, church basements, community centres, common rooms, parks and alleys?
  • How do people hear about what’s going on in Weston and Mt.Dennis?
  • Where are new ideas coming from?
  • Who are the people making things happen in Weston and Mt.Dennis?
  • What is Weston and Mt. Dennis’s best kept creative secret?

We’re organizing a community meeting because we want to meet:

  • People who attend arts events in Weston and Mt.Dennis and/or in other parts of the city
  • People who participate in arts projects or create their own work and enjoy the arts for the love of it
  • Professional artists who live and/or work in Weston and Mt.Dennis
  • Artists who have recently moved to Canada and have made Weston and Mt.Dennis their home
  • Anyone who lives and/or works in Weston and Mt.Dennis and is interested in creative activities in the neighbourhood

What Can You Do?

  • Help us promote the community meeting by passing the word via your networks
  • Help us identify artists, arts groups and community agencies using the arts
  • Attend the meeting and contribute to the discussion
  • Agree to an interview in  the new year (we’ll contact you in January to set up a time)


Pearls of Wisdom Fundraiser for York West Active Living Centre:




St John (might be) getting new school!

After years of struggle, St John the Evangelist Elementary School will (probably) be getting new facilities. The Ministry of Education announced funding for a new school yesterday.

St John is presently very overcrowded; there are 10 portables on the grounds, and the children have very little grass or green space to enjoy. The school will also be disrupted by the construction of the Air Rail Link; Metrolinx thinks that all the children in the portables should be moved while they build. St John administration and parent council had been pushing to build a new, bigger facility while the construction was going on.

The TDCSB says that there will be about $6.2 million for the new school—enough to build for 600 students as soon as September of 2012.

In the press release, Dave Bennett, Vice Chair of the Parent Council, graciously thanked MPP Laura Albanese, trustee Frank D’Amico, and the community for their support. He said, “We live in a great community!”

Update: I’ve added a few qualifiers, since it’s not all that clear whether, in fact, the money is there. Aaargh. Just ignore this post.


St John the Evangelist needs your help

The students at St John the Evangelist need a new school, are in line for a new school, and may get a new school if you help.

Dave Bennett, Chair of the Parent Council, says the Ministry of Education will be meeting with the TCDSB on August 25; he would like residents to express their support for a new school before that meeting.

St John is very overcrowded—in the autumn, it will have the maximum number of portables allowed, and classes now sometimes happen in the church basement. The school is also threatened by construction of the new Air Rail Link. Metrolinx thinks that the students in the portables should be moved to another school. Finally, the start of full-day kindergarten in 2014 will put additional pressure on the school.

Bennet says, “we would rather see St. John be replaced at the same time as the tunnel behind the school is being built. But in order to get this accomplished, we require your support.”

If you support the construction of a new school, you can send an email blast to the following people by clicking this little link.

  • Shelley Potter (Chief of Staff – Minister’s Office)
  • Kevin Costante (Deputy Minister – Deputy Minister’s Office)
  • Gabriel Sekaly (Assistant Deputy Minister)
  • Laura Albanese (our MPP)
  • Dave Bennett.