Strathcona High School

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Strathcona High School
Strathcona Composite High School Logo.svg
10450 - 72 Ave
Edmonton, Alberta, T6E 0Z6
Coordinates 53°30′32″N 113°29′57″W / 53.50889°N 113.49917°W / 53.50889; -113.49917Coordinates: 53°30′32″N 113°29′57″W / 53.50889°N 113.49917°W / 53.50889; -113.49917
School type Public secondary
Motto Ut qui ministrat
(As one who serves)
Established 1955 (campus built)
Founded 1804
School board Edmonton Public Schools
Principal Hans van Ginhoven
Grades 10–12
Enrollment 1,534[1] (2016–2017)
Colour(s) Scarlet and Gold         
Mascot Gaylord the Lion[2]

Strathcona High School, colloquially referred to as Scona, is a public high school located in Edmonton, Alberta. The school was referred to as Strathcona Composite High School up until 2014 and was originally constructed to hold 1200 students, A modernization project was completed in 2015 and the school now enrolls approximately 1500 students.


In the early 1900s, the original Strathcona High School building was built and named after Lord Strathcona, a pioneering Scottish businessman and Canadian Parliamentarian, who was very influential in the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway.[2][3]

Strathcona Composite High School was opened in 1955 to accommodate the growing population of Edmonton. Many students from the original Strathcona High School (now known as Old Scona Academic High School) were transferred to Strathcona Composite in 1955. It is located on Edmonton’s south side just south of the Old Strathcona district on a large piece of parkland.

The school houses about 60 classrooms, several computer labs, two gymnasiums, a library media centre with networked CDs, a cafeteria, a fitness centre and a community pool operated by River City Recreation, a private contractor. Outside the school, the track team uses Rollie Miles Athletic Field. This field was also used as a training facility for the 1978 Commonwealth Games, the 2001 IAAF World Championships in Athletics, and the 2005 World Masters Games. Other facilities around the school include South Side Sports Arena, which Phys Ed classes use for the skating unit.

  • School Team Name: The Lords
  • School Motto: Ut Qui Ministrat (Latin: "As one who serves")
  • School Colours: Scarlet & Gold
  • School Mascot: Gaylord the Lion[2]

At the main entrance of the school, known as the Michener Entrance, an old lamp from the original Old Scona building is on during school hours and hangs over the Scona crest which, out of respect, students and staff will not walk across.

Global initiatives[edit]

Since 2008, Strathcona High School has united annually to turn the motto “as one who serves” into reality. As of 2016 students have raised over $1.3 million. By engaging in multiple local service projects and massive global initiatives, Strathcona students have had a chance to learn about servant leadership, entrepreneurship, global citizenship, and social affairs. Students in the Leadership Program work behind the scenes to plan and organize each initiative, but is the mass participation of all departments, clubs, teams and community allies that has made past campaigns successful. Below is a brief overview of previous campaigns:

Take a Spin For Chelsea (2008)[edit]

  • Was a fundraiser and spirit raiser for Chelsea, a student who suffered a horrific car accident that caused her to lose function in her legs, and become a paraplegic. The school raised CAD$27,000 to help with wheelchair accessibility at home and at school.

Spread the Word (2009)[edit]

  • $30,000 helped give the gift of literacy to children by building a school at an HIV orphanage in Bumala, Kenya.

Play it Forward (2010)[edit]

  • $54,500 helped support programs that use play as a tool to promote education and health in developing countries through a partnership with Right to Play.

Not For Sale (2011)[edit]

  • Shone light on the dark issue of human trafficking by raising awareness and lobbying the Canadian government to create tougher anti-human trafficking laws. $36,000 for

Live Love Lend (2012)[edit]

  • $56,000 was raised for, a microfinancing website that empowers entrepreneurs in developing nations. This money was re-loaned multiple times to create at a total of $248,550 as of November 2014.

H2All (2013)[edit]

  • Working with WaterCan, the Canadian Development Agency turned the initial amount of $50,000 into $125,000 to build four wells and sanitation projects in four Ethiopian communities.

Chain Reaction (2014)[edit]

  • $180,000 was raised in partnership with World Bicycle Relief to buy bicycles for people in Africa and Asia. The bicycles allowed for increased access to education, medical care and entrepreneurial opportunities.

Treehouse Project (2015)[edit]

  • In 2015, Strathcona High School started the treehouse project. The project aimed to end youth homelessness in the City of Edmonton and to build an ecolodge in Ecuador run by locals as a means of economic support.
  • The School decided to do a 24-hour Bikeathon, and set a goal of $200,000. The school exceeded its goal by raising over $354,000 with 1,100 students participating. Subsequently the event made history as Canada's largest school charity project.[4][5]

Bike2Box (2016)[edit]

  • In 2016, the school had over 30 groups apply for a partnership with the year's global initiative.
  • Shelter Box Canada was chosen as the charity to be supported in a school-wide vote of student and staff. As in 2015 a bikeathon was the means of raising money. The 2016 fundraising goal of $200,000 was surpassed as students raised just over $449,000.[6] Approximately 1200 students participated.[7] As a result, Bike2Box broke the record for the largest student-led fundraiser in Canada, while also becoming Canada's largest school charity project.[8][9][10]

Hope in Motion (2017)[edit]

  • In Late 2016, the Jack Davis Hope Foundation was selected as the charity to be supported in a school-wide vote of student and staff. The event is the school's fourth bikathon, and is to be held from March 10, 2017 through to March 11, 2017.[11]
  • The school set a fundraising goal of $300,000.00 due to the success of the previous two events. The school ultimately raised just over $303,000.00[12]

Theatre productions[edit]

Strathcona High School has a well established theatre program. In addition to the major productions listed below, the students at the school, with direction from the staff, participate in and create various other theatre projects including: OneAct Festival (plays directed by Grade 12 Students using student cast and crew), smaller scale productions by the various Drama classes, pep rallies, and in conjunction with Students Union and other student bodies, a Talent show and an Awards night.

Strathcona's Schools Productions:

Strathcona has also earned multiple Cappies awards including Outstanding musical for Footloose, West Side Story, Les Misérables, Legally Blonde, In the Heights and many other technical, dance, and acting awards.[13]

Student Theater clubs: Dance Ensemble, Technical Theatre Crew, Improv Team, OneActs, Year Play, Cappies


Scona has a rich history of athletics not only in the Edmonton region, but at a provincial level as well. There is rarely a year the school does not have multiple sports end up as city champions.

The school fields teams in:


Basketball (Boys and Girls, both Junior and Senior)

Cross Country



Golf (Boys and Girls)

Rugby (Boys and Girls)

Soccer (Boys and Girls, both Junior and Senior)


Track and Field

Volleyball (Boys and Girls, both Junior and Senior)

Scona's athletics programs holds various winning streaks in Edmonton's city championships including:


16 Rhodes Scholars have come from Scona. Included in this number is the first female Rhodes scholar from Alberta. Scona also has an Advanced Placement (AP) program, which is one of the largest in Canada.[citation needed] By completing internationally recognized exams, administered by the College Board, many Scona students earn credit that can be applied to first year University courses. Currently, the school offers AP courses in Studio Art, Biology, Calculus AB, Calculus BC, Chemistry, Physics B, English Language, English Literature, Environmental Science, Spanish Language, European History, French Language, French Literature, and German Language. Each year, Scona is represented amongst Canada's National AP Scholars by students who score high grades on five or more AP exams. In 2001 to 2008, 248 Scona students were ranked as AP Scholars; 66 of Alberta's 139 AP National Scholars were Scona Lords; and all 10 Edmonton Public Schools AP Award winners were from Strathcona.[citation needed]

For the 2014-2015 school year and registered enrollment for the 2015-2016 school year, Strathcona High School has the largest AP (Advanced Placement) program in Canada. AP grade averages ranked the highest in Canada, and Second in North America.

In 2012 Strathcona High School was one of 10 schools worldwide to participate in the pilot program of the AP Capstone program.[14] The program became fully operational for the 2014-15 school year, with 100 of the more than 20,000 AP schools participating.[15] Strathcona is the only school in Alberta, and one of only 15 in Canada, to participate in the program.[16]

Notable alumni[edit]

Many of Edmonton's influential community leaders, including Lois Hole and Robert Stollery, have graduated from Scona, while Ross Sheppard was its principal at one time. Recent Scona graduates continue to have strong influence as community leaders.[2]


  1. ^ "Strathcona School". Edmonton Public Schools. Retrieved 19 December 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Bike2Box". Strathcona Initiative 2016. Retrieved 18 March 2016. 
  7. ^ French, Janet (18 March 2016). "Strathcona High leads the way with charity bike-a-thon". Edmonton Journal. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ Edmonton School Board press release
  15. ^ "Advanced Placement". Strathcona High School. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  16. ^ "Participating High Schools". AP Capstone. The College Board. Retrieved 4 February 2016. 
  17. ^ Zdeb, Chris (24 January 2013). "From Prairie girl to L.A. stuntwoman". Calgary Herald. 
  18. ^ "Jon Hameister-Ries - 2005 Football". University of Tulsa. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  19. ^ Couture, Xanthe. "Don Iveson's Favourite Teacher". The Alberta Teachers’ Association. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  20. ^ "History & Archive". Strathcona High School. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  21. ^ MacKinnon, John (28 July 2007). "A big day in Rio for River City". Edmonton Journal. 
  22. ^ Moddejonge, Gerry (4 June 2014). "Aside from a stint at St. Francis Xavier University, Eskimos LB Corbin Sharun played all his football in capital region". Edmonton Sun. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  23. ^
  24. ^ Hall, Vicki (28 June 2013). "Tsoumpas enters season a lean, mean machine after off-season of healthy eating". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 23 August 2016.