Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute

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Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute
This is a logo for the high school Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute.jpg
235 Frontenac Street

, ,
School typeSecondary
MottoMaxima Debetur Pueris Reverentia
("Youth are entitled to the greatest respect")
School boardLimestone District School Board
Area trusteePaula Murray
PrincipalTalya McKenna
Grades9 - 12
LanguageEnglish, French, Spanish, and Latin
Colour(s)Blue and white
MascotBlue bear
Team nameBlues

Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute (KCVI) is a secondary school in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Founded in 1792 by Reverend John Stuart based upon a grant for secondary education in the colony of Upper Canada, it moved to its present location in 1892. It is considered the oldest public secondary school in Ontario and the second oldest in Canada.

KCVI was Kingston's only secondary school until the opening of Queen Elizabeth Collegiate and Vocational Institute (QECVI) in 1955 and Loyalist Collegiate and Vocational Institute (LCVI) in 1963.

In 2012, KCVI was ranked by the Fraser Institute as the top performing school in the Limestone Board and in the top 10 per cent of public schools in Ontario.

KCVI is scheduled to close in 2019 upon completion of a new high school being constructed on the former QECVI site to replace both it and QECVI[1].


KCVI's history starts with the Kingston Grammar school in 1792. In 1807, the school was renamed Midland District Grammar School.[2] From c. 1825–30, the future first prime minister of Canada, John A. Macdonald, attended the school.[3] In c. 1853 the school moved to a new location - now Sydenham Public School - and was renamed Kingston County Grammar School.[2] It was renamed Kingston High School in 1871, becoming Kingston Collegiate Institute (KCI) in 1872.[2] Girls were first admitted as students in January 1877, and the school has remained co-educational ever since. Fifteen years later, at the institution's centenary in 1892, the school moved to its present site on Frontenac Street.[2] Finally, with the addition of a technical and commercial teaching wing in 1931, the school was renamed Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute (KCVI), the name it retains to this day.[2] The oldest remaining wing of the school is the 1915 wing, which now houses science laboratories. The original wing was destroyed by fire and has since been replaced. The school celebrated its bicentenary in 1992 and celebrated it's 225 anniversary in 2017. The school is commonly recognized as the oldest public high school in Ontario and the second oldest in the country.

The school closure and move to former QECVI site was planned to happen at the end of the 2018-2019 school year, but was then moved to happen in the middle of the 2019-2020 school year[4]. The school closure was delayed again another until the end of the 2019-2020 school year in September 2019[1].


The team colours are blue and white. The team name for all sports is "Blues" and the mascot is a blue bear. The school competes in various sports including, but not limited to: rowing, cross-country, track and field, football, chess club, advanced chicken plucking, rugby, hockey, basketball, volleyball, soccer, mountain biking, curling, Ping-Pong, tennis, badminton, baseball, golf, swimming, and skiing, along with various other sports.

Coat of arms[edit]

A new coat of arms was formally conferred on KCVI by Ray Hnatyshyn, then Governor General of Canada, in 1992. It celebrated KCVI's 200th anniversary.

The Latin motto, maxima debetur pueris reverentia, can be roughly translated to "Youth are entitled to the greatest respect". Another more literal translation would be "The greatest respect is owed to boys". The differences in translation are not an attempt to make the motto more politically correct. The Latin word "puer", refers to a boy (or child) under the age of 17 (juvenis would refer to older youth) and in the plural is used to refer to groups of children of both genders.

IB Diploma program[edit]

KCVI is one of 83 schools in Canada which runs the International Baccalaureate program. The IB diploma program is offered at KCVI during the last two years of secondary school. However, there is also the Pre-IB program to prepare the Gr. 9 and 10 students for the rigorous pace of the IB curriculum. Also, if students do not want to enroll in the complete IB diploma program, they may apply for IB certificates in the course of their choosing.

SHSM (Specialist High Skills Major)[edit]

KCVI offers a SHSM in Arts in Culture and Communication Technologies.

KCVI clubs[edit]

KCVI has many different activities going on throughout the school year, such as: the Students' Association - student government, DECA - Student Marketing Club, the student run Leadership Conference, the improv teams, Mathletes, Model UN, Respect Committee, Outdoors Club, Environment Club, South African Partnership and Youth in Action, Drama Club, Robotics Club and the Debating Club. There is also an Athletics Association in charge of many sport-related school events. Newly formed in the 2006/07 year is the Arts Council, a complement to the Athletic Association. The KCVI Yearbook Committee creates a pictorial account of each year in a year book called "The Times". As well, KCVI hosts CKVI (The Cave), a radio broadcasting focus program, which broadcasts at 91.9 FM in downtown Kingston.


KCVI's DECA chapter is the largest and most successful in eastern Ontario, with members competing and winning medals at regional, provincial and international competitions, winning over 100 medals, 20 plaques, and 5 ICDC trophies over the past 9 years. Since its establishment in 2005, KCVI's DECA chapter has seen significant growth, and has registered over 60 members for its 2013-2014 season, making it one of the largest clubs at KCVI. Not only does the KCVI DECA chapter strive to be the best in the school environment, the chapter has also seen active participation within the community of Kingston, having active partnerships with influential businesses and organizations such as, Kingston Community Credit Union, Kingston Economic Development Corporation, and the Queen's University School of Business, raising over $4000 in generous sponsorships and grants.

The current advisor of KCVI's DECA chapter is Huw Davies.

The KCVI DECA chapter's performance at the 2014 International Career Development Conference in Atlanta, Georgia has been the best yet, taking home over 20 medals and 3 trophies.

KCVI Improv Team[edit]

KCVI has a long and decorated history of competing in the Canadian Improv Games. Since the Kingston Regional Tournament was re-established in the 1996–97 school year, KCVI has won 10 regional gold medals (including 7 back-to-back regional titles from 1997–2003), three regional silver medals and one regional bronze medal. The team won national bronze in 1998.

The Kingston Model United Nations[edit]

KCVI has hosted a Model United Nations for several years, held every spring. Recently the Model UN has started to expand outside the school.[5]


K-Botics, otherwise known as FRC team 2809 is a robotics club started and mentored by two teachers Kevin Wood and Rachel Bearse. K-Botics is an extracurricular program at the school where students design and build a robot from scratch to participate in a game created by FIRST. The game, which changes every year, is not only played by hundreds of robotics teams from around the world, it is also the training ground for future engineers. Traveling to multiple locations throughout the year K-Botics has received multiple awards and have been placed in a wide variety of high-ranking positions. The group receives support from local companies and community volunteers. K-Botics merged to become Lake Effect Robotics.

Lake Effect Robotics[edit]

Lake Effect Robotics, otherwise known as FRC team 2708 that was formed as a merger of K-Botics, FRC team 2809, and the CyberFalcons, FRC team 3710. Lake Effect Robotics was on the winning alliance at the Detroit FIRST World Championship in 2018. Lake Effect Robotics is also known for having an intuitive scouting system [6]. The scouting system uses Android devices connecting over Bluetooth to be able to have access to all data in real time.

Student government[edit]

Many school events and spirit days at KCVI are organized and implemented by the SA (Students' Association), the KCVI student government.

Street Smart[edit]

Street Smart is a Community Education Centre of the Limestone District School Board where students can earn their high school diploma in a more relaxed environment. They provide on-site secondary education for students aged primarily 16–20 who require an alternative setting for earning high school credits. They are staffed with certified secondary school teachers.

Focus Programs[edit]

The Limestone District School Board offers a number of courses that concentrate on a particular field of interest to give students training, academic experience, and work experience that will give them a foundation in that area of study [7]. There are a variety of programs that prepare students for different destinations post-graduation: university, college, apprenticeships, and direct entry into the workplace. The programs offered at KCVI specifically include guitar building and radio broadcast journalism.

Notable students[edit]

Grade Points competition[edit]

Students of KCVI participate in a Grade Points competition, in which different themes days (called "Spirit Days") are decided by the Students' Association and the grade with the most students participating in that theme are awarded grade points. The grade with the most grade points at the end of the year is awarded a prize. Prizes in the past include various KCVI memorabilia.

Decision to close KCVI[edit]

In 2011, The Limestone District School Board Program and Accommodation Review Committee (PARC) began investigating strategies for managing the board's annual budget. The committee focused on investigating the advantages and disadvantages of closing select Kingston high schools that were under-enrolled or over-budget. KCVI was reviewed as a problematic institution by the committee due to the school's crumbling infrastructure and high annual overhead. The discussion of closing KCVI caused a large disruption among its students, alumni and parents, and gained support from the community, resulting in the formation of the group "Save Kingston City Schools". Many Kingston residents have supported the group and its cause by posting promotional signs on their lawns and partaking in social media campaigns using Facebook. However, in December 2014, a court ruling dismissed an appeal against the closure. On March 24, 2014, 35 million dollars were allocated to the building of a new school,[16] which is planned to be constructed in 2017.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b September 12, Julia McKay More from Julia McKay Published on; September 12, 2019 | Last Updated; Edt, 2019 6:25 Pm (2019-09-12). "Another opening delay announced for Kingston Secondary School". The Kingston Whig-Standard. Retrieved 2019-10-16.
  2. ^ a b c d e McKendry, Jennifer. "Chronology of the City of Kingston." Kingston: Kingston Historical Society, 2000.
  3. ^ Milnes, Arthur ed. "Sir John A. Macdonald: Father of Confederation." City of Kingston Website.
  4. ^ "Kingston Secondary School project set back by delays, disruptions: school board". Global News. Retrieved 2019-10-16.
  5. ^ "United Nations Society".
  6. ^ Scouting app for FIRST Robotics Competition team Lake Effect Robotics: LakeEffectRobotics/LakeEffectScoutingApp, Lake Effect Robotics 2708, 2018-12-31, retrieved 2019-01-04
  7. ^ Limestone District School Board: Focus Programs, Limestone District School Board, 2019, retrieved 2019-02-01
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-06-05. Retrieved 2011-05-13.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ Klajman, Ed. "Kingston Duo ready to row". Retrieved 26 July 2012.
  14. ^ "That was unreal".
  15. ^ "Minutes of Central Kingston Intermediate & Secondary Schools Program and Accommodation Review Committee Public Meeting #1" (PDF). Limestone District School Board. Retrieved 3 February 2017.
  16. ^ "March 25, 2014 Archives" – via

External links[edit]