Strathcona Composite High School

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Strathcona High School
Strathcona Composite High School Logo.svg
Ut qui ministrat
As one who serves
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
Established 1955 (campus built)
Founded 1908
School board Edmonton Public Schools
Principal Hans van Ginhoven
Grades 10–12
Enrollment 1,500
Colour(s) Scarlet and Gold         
Mascot Gaylord the Lion[1]

Strathcona High School, or Scona as students and staff refer to it, is a public high school located in Edmonton, Alberta. The school was referred to as Strathcona Composite High School up until 2014. The school was originally constructed to hold 1200 students, which a $455 Million renovation program expanded to 1500 students by Spring 2015. The school operated remains slightly over capacity for the 2014-2015 school year, with 1594 students in attendance.[2] Scona should not be confused with the nearby Old Scona Academic High School.


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.[1][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 pool owned and operated by a private contractor "River City Recreation". Outside the school, the track team uses Rollie Miles Athletic Field. This field was also used for the 1978 Commonwealth Games (as a training facility), 2001 IAAF World Championships in Athletics and was also used for training in 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[1]

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 our motto “as one who serves” into reality. 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 ally’s that has made our past campaigns successful. Below is a brief overview of previous campaigns:

Take a Spin For Chelsea (2008)

  • 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 $27 000 to help with wheelchair accessibility at home and at school.
Spread the Word (2009)
  • $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)
  • $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)
  • 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)
  • $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)
  • 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)
  • $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.

In 2015, Strathcona High School started the treehouse project. The project aimed to end youth homelessness in the City of Edmonton and to build a Hotel in Ecuador run by locals as a means of economic support. This helps ensure that deforestation and oil drilling by Royal Dutch Shell can be avoided.
The School decided to do a 24-hour Bikeathon, and set a goal of $200,000.00. The school exceeded their goal by raising over $354,000.00 with 1,100 students participating. This brought the schools total fundraised amount to over $850,000.

In 2016, the school has had over 180+ groups apply for a partnership with the years global initiative. It is predicted to be the year that the school surpasses a total of $1,000,000 raised

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 and many other technical, dance, and acting awards.[4]

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]

Strathcona High School is currently participating in a pilot program of the AP Capstone program.[5]

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.

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.[1]