Sacred Heart Catholic High School (Newmarket)
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|Sacred Heart Catholic High School|
|908 Lemar Road
|School type||High school|
|Motto||"A community called to share in the development of the whole person"|
|Religious affiliation(s)||Roman Catholic|
|School board||York Catholic District School Board|
|Area trustee||Theresa McNicol|
|Colour(s)||Maroon and Grey|
|Mascot||Corky the Crusader|
Sacred Heart Catholic High School is a public Catholic high school in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada. It is currently the only high school in Newmarket under the jurisdiction of the York Catholic District School Board. There were 1620 full-time registered students for the 2005/2006 year, 95 full-time staff members, and 24 support staff.
In January 1969, the York Region Separate School Board came into existence with the combining of eleven small school boards. Shortly thereafter, the Board passed a motion to Catholic High Schools in Toronto. At their next meeting, trustees faced a parents' delegation protesting the decision. This delegation, in convincing the Board to reverse its stand, showed that support for the concept of Catholic education beyond elementary school was strong.
Thus, the Board carried on the tradition of Catholic education and continued to transport students to Catholic high schools in Metropolitan Toronto. In 1973, the Metro Separate School Board declared that these students could no longer be accommodated. Therefore, in 1974, the York Separate School Board decided to establish St. Robert Catholic High School in Thornhill, Ontario. In doing so, the Board made a statement that a second junior high school would be built north of Toronto at a future date "if the extension of Catholic education is supported by the Catholic community of York Region".
St. Robert was a tremendous success and after four years was filled to capacity. The Board, therefore, opened the doors of Sacred Heart Junior High School in September 1979, providing 265 students with a Grades 7 to 9 program. Through the cooperative efforts of the Board and the Toronto Archdiocese High School Commission, Grade 11 was introduced in September 1981 and one grade was added each subsequent year.
Simultaneously, a building program was undertaken and beautiful new facilities were made available to students in September 1983. The student population continued to increase and a new addition to the building was opened in May 1987.
The Catholic School Council in conjunction with staff and students continue to seek improvements to the school. In 2002 two new additions were added which gave the school a new cafeteria, upgraded physical education equipment and facilities, an expanded library resource centre, a theatre/lecture hall, new administrative offices as well as guidance and special education additions.
Another major renovation took place in the summer of 2004. The entire second floor of the old wing received new Science Labs and Art Rooms. In 2017, an indoor pool was installed after an old elevator shaft was demolished, this has lead to the creation of a school swim team.
Sports and athletics
Sacred Heart Catholic High School's sports teams are known as the Crusaders. The school's mascot is Corky, a lovable knight dressed in armor, who is known for his playful and sometimes absurd attitude while attending Crusader home games.
Sacred Heart competes in a variety of different sports including:
- Boys'/Girls' Basketball
- Boys'/Girls' Soccer
- Boys'/Girls' Hockey
- Boys'/Girls' Volleyball
- Boys'/Girls' Rugby
- Cross Country Running
- Track and Field
Sacred Heart has won four OFSAA championships.
The Varsity Girls Curling Team won the York Region Athletic Association (YRAA) Championships in the 2007/2008 and 2008/2009 seasons.
The school also has a popular Ski & Snowboard Club which has weekly ski trips to Horseshoe Resort and an annual trip to places like Vermont and the West Coast.
Sacred Heart has always been an active contributor to the local community. Every year, the school gets involved with many fundraising and charitable organizations.
Throughout the past few years, Sacred Heart has participated biannually in the Canadian Cancer Society's biggest fundraiser, Relay For Life. The school has been very successful each time they have participated and are among the top school's in the country. Since 2009, they have raised over $550,000 for cancer research. In the spring of 2012, Sacred Heart's students' raised over $150,000, the highest amount ever raised by any high school in Canada. The graduating class were featured on a CTV News broadcast. They raised $143,000 in 2014. Led by Aaron Zhang in 2016, the students raised over $186,000, setting both a personal and Canada-wide record yet again.
The school participates in the Terry Fox Run, semester food drives, and Sharelife, an organization which raises funds to support those going through some very difficult times. Sacred Heart also participates in the CN Tower stairclimbs for United Way, The 30 Hour Famine, Habitat for Humanity and the World Wildlife Fund.
During the last five years, the Sacred Heart community, along with a number of other schools, have also been involved with the Hands of Hope project. The program was developed for the main reason of educating students concerning humanitarian and social justice issues and causes students to take action against them.
The charitable organization Hands Of Hope For the Children was formed upon the return of two teachers who had traveled on a bus, which acted as a mobile dentist clinic, through Guatemala in 1999. During this visit, they saw how much hope Sacred Heart could give to these communities. In 2000, four teachers and four students took three buses filled with donations from twelve schools in the Newmarket community to Guatemala. The donations included clothing, shoes, medical and dental supplies, tools, and athletic equipment. While in Guatemala, they distributed the items to organizations and villages within the country. Two of the buses are now being used as mobile medical clinics for rural villages. The third bus was given to a human rights organization for children's programs. The most recent campaign lead to the construction of over 100 beds for impoverished villages.
Academic performance is an important part of Sacred Heart's identity, and most students see academic success as a key component of school involvement. In the 2015-2016 school year, over half of the graduating class achieved a final average of over 80%. Sacred Heart is also home to a regionwide Advanced Placement program, which features curriculum that prepares students for the transition into university level subject matter. This AP program has seen significant success, with some courses like 11 AP Chemistry having only a single failure on a final exam (54/110) since the introduction of Advanced Placement to Sacred Heart in 2003.
The student government at Sacred Heart is split up into five different councils which have authority over their specific jurisdictions. The most influential council is the Student Council. This council is elected by the student body. The Student Council is responsible for organizing dances, semi-formals, making the morning announcements, and overseeing most of the operations in the student government. The 2017 semi-formal dance was especially successful, netting an incredible profit of $124.50. This success came in spite of the resistance the Social Coordinator received from the other members of the Council, which most notably included the changing of the dance's theme without consulting him.
The Arts Council is in charge of showcasing the school's artistic talents. Over the years, the Arts Council has been able to put on many theatrical plays, musicals, and events such as the Guitar Wars, Battle of the Bands, and Art & Soul Night. Arts Council is also responsible for the end of year Arts Banquet for the up-and-coming musicians, artists, actors and actresses.
The Athletic Council is in charge of continuing Sacred Heart’s sporting traditions. They organize the annual Athletic Banquet and numerous 'Buy Out's/Buy In's' throughout the year.
The Spirit Council is responsible for bring cheer and school spirit to the student body with entertaining events, games, and the yearly pep rally.
The Youth Awareness Council (Y.A.C.) is responsible for lending a hand to those who are in need by raising the community’s awareness of social justice issues. Y.A.C. has organized food drives, the Montreal massacre memorial, and Black History Month.
Clubs and activities
Cru's News is the school's monthly newspaper. They publish articles describing the exiting events that occur around the school, and share what the different clubs and teams are up to. Some of Sacred Heart's many clubs, groups, and teams are:
- String Ensemble
- String Quartet
- Senior Concert Band
- Junior Concert Band
- Stage Band
- Swing Band
- S.T.O.M.P - Students Thinking of Multicultural People
- The Chess Club
- Environmental Council
- Prom Committee
- SMASH - Student Mentors at Sacred Heart
- Best Buddies
- The Comic Book Club
- Games Club
- Social Justice
- Art Council
- Art Show
- Improv Club
- White Pine Reading Club
- REACH For The Top
- Anime Club
- Youth Awareness Council (Y.A.C.)
- SAGA (Sexuality and Gender Acceptance) Club
- Dance Team
- Ping Pong Club
Sacred Heart's School Reach program is among the most successful in York Region. The Junior/Intermediate team has won numerous regional championships while the Senior team has advanced to the Provincial Finals on several occasions, most recently the 2011-2012 season when the team finished with an all-time high ranking of fourth in the province. The SAGA club has also received accolades from the Egale Canada Human Rights Trust for the development of several new genders and sexualities, this is a major facet of Sacred Heart's transformation into a place of equality and diversity.
- Steve Downie - Pittsburgh Penguins player and member of the gold-winning 2006 and 2007 Canadian World Junior hockey teams.
- Michelle Lovretta - Gemini nominated screenwriter (Hunt for Justice) and an executive producer of Instant Star.
- Sheila Reid - Distance runner. Represented Canada at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
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Sacred Heart has changed the uniform policy numerous times since opening. Currently, students wear white or burgundy golf shirts with grey dress pants and solid black shoes. The school administration recommends that students wear shoes with proper arch support to reduce foot fatigue - as a result, shoes from the Reebok Zig series are commonplace. Students also have the option of wearing a school crested burgundy sweater ordered through uniform providers.
Girls were previously allowed to wear kilts but this privilege was taken away during the 2010-2011 school year. The original plan was to "phase out" the kilts by disallowing them for the class of 2013 onward but after allowing the classes of 2010, 2011, and 2012 to wear kilts until graduation this right was taken away from girls in all grades shortly after Christmas Break in January 2011.
- Saccone, Rose; LeBlanc, Kathy (22 June 2012). "Newmarket's Sacred Heart Relay For Life tops in Canada". Aurora Banner (Press release). Retrieved 1 May 2015.
- "Newmarket's Sacred Heart school raised over $186,000 for cancer research". York Catholic District School Board. Retrieved January 17, 2017.