Vaughan Road Academy

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Vaughan Road Academy
Vaughan road academy mon.jpeg
Address
529 Vaughan Road
Toronto, Ontario, M6C 2P7
Canada
Coordinates 43°41′27″N 79°26′12″W / 43.690786°N 79.436678°W / 43.690786; -79.436678Coordinates: 43°41′27″N 79°26′12″W / 43.690786°N 79.436678°W / 43.690786; -79.436678
Information
School type High school
Motto In Medium Quaesita Reponunt
(They lay up in store for common use whatever they have gained)
Founded 1927
School board Toronto District School Board
Grades 9-12
Language English
Colour(s) Blue, Red, and Gold             
Mascot Viper
Team name Vaughan Road Vipers
Website

Vaughan Road Academy (VRA) is a Toronto District School Board International Baccalaureate high school. It is located in the Oakwood–Vaughan neighbourhood of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in the York district. The school is situated at the Vaughan Road and Winona Drive intersection, close to Oakwood Avenue. It works in partnership with the J.R. Wilcox and Cedarvale Community Schools, and also offers the IB Diploma Programme for students in grades 11 and 12. In addition to the International Baccalaureate, it also has Cooperative Education and INTERACT programs.

The school principal is Cynthia ("Cindy") Zwicker-Reston, and the vice principal is Janet Allen. The IB coordinator is Paul Corner and the INTERACT coordinator is Michael Alex.

History[edit]

Founding[edit]

Vaughan Road Collegiate Institute (VRCI) was the first high school built in York Township, the forerunner of the Borough of York. Construction of VRCI began in July 1926 and the cornerstone was laid by Lieutenant-Governor Henry Cockshutt in September 1926. George Evans, the first principal,[1] served from 1926 to 1957. In April 1927, the students moved into the school from temporary quarters in portables at Rawlinson Public School.

In 1988 the school was renamed Vaughan Road Academy, and began offering advanced academic, arts and athletic programs. It began offering the International Baccalaureate program in 1998.[2]

School programs[edit]

International Baccalaureate[edit]

The International Baccalaureate (IB) program allows students to earn an IB Diploma, while also earning the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (O.S.S.D.), which increases a student's chance of acceptance into universities worldwide.

INTERACT[edit]

The INTERACT program is for students in the school who are heavily involved in the arts or athletics program outside of school. These students have flexible schedules to accommodate their auditions, rehearsals, performances, competitions, etc. The program is mostly done in small group settings and whenever possible, the teachers can design assignments that incorporate the student's interest as well (such as a history assignment researching on the music of a certain historical era when the student is interested in music). Notable alumni of the INTERACT program include Drake, Ellen Page,[3] Alison Pill, Mark Rendall, Tyler Nella, Matthew Ortved, and Julie and Gigi Rabnett.

Co-operative education[edit]

Co-operative education, or Co-op is a structured method of combining academic education with practical work experience. It is a four credit semester program and at Vaughan Road, it is offered in: World of Work (3) and Business English (1). The program is open to all students who are 16 years old and have completed sixteen credits. This program offers youth a chance to "try out" a career while they can still afford the chance to explore, gain and develop good work habits and experience for the future, and test their skills and knowledge learnt at school in the work place.

Empowered Student Partnership[edit]

Empowered Student Partnership or ESP was launched in October 2002. Since then 110 greater Toronto area high schools have joined, including Vaughan Road Academy. It challenges schools citywide to make a difference in their community and tackles issues through student-driven initiatives.[4] Students work along with the Toronto Police Service, the Canadian Safe School Network, ProAction, the City of Toronto, the Toronto District School Board, the Toronto Catholic District School Board, Conseil scolaire de district du Centre-Sud-Ouest, and Conseil scolaire de district Catholique Centre-Sud to execute a safe schools initiative in their local schools and communities. Students take the steps to solve problems specific to their school with the option of utilizing programs or guest speakers, available to them through the Police Coordinator at Community Programs, Youth Services.

Athletics[edit]

Vaughan Road Academy has interscholastic and intramural teams for badminton, ball hockey, baseball, basketball, cricket, cross country running, flag football, hockey, soccer, softball, swimming, table tennis, tennis, track and field and volleyball and knuckeballs.

Vaughan Road competes in TDSSAA and Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) as the Vaughan Road Vipers, which is not to be confused with a similarly named junior hockey team in Vaughan, Ontario.[citation needed]

In 2012, the Vaughan Road Vipers basketball team won the OFSAA 'AA' Provincial Championships. In 2004, the Vipers came second in the OFSAA 'AA' Provincial Championships.

Vaughan Vox[edit]

Vaughan Road Academy has a school newspaper known as the "Vaughan Vox", sometimes simply called the "Vox". Typically released twice a year, it is usually eight pages long and covers a range of school activities and issues.

Queer-Straight Alliance[edit]

Vaughan Road Academy has a large and active Queer-Straight Alliance. Founded in 2006 as a Gay-Straight Alliance by a small group of grade 12 students, it was reactivated in 2010. The organization works to combat homophobia in the school and to create a safe environment for Queer students and those who support them. They have hosted guest speakers, including Farrah Khan and Brent Hawkes. In 2013 the group changed its name to the Queer-Straight Alliance.

Recognition for other activities[edit]

Vaughan Road students have participated in competitions such as the annual Sears Ontario Drama Festival, where several of the top awards for 2006 went to VRA students,[5] and the International Olympiad in Informatics, where a VRA student received a gold medal in 2005 and silver medals in 2004 and 2006.[6] In 2013, the short film "Homecoming," produced by grade twelve students in the Vaughan Road Academy film program, was shown in the TIFF Bell Lightbox "Jump Cuts" film festival. The following year, in 2014, Vaughan film students had another film in the "Jump Cuts" festival, "Nightlight."

School motto[edit]

The school motto is a quote from the fourth book of Vergil's Georgics which describes the behavior and society of bees: In Medium Quaesita Reponunt, which means "They lay up in store for common use whatever they have gained".

The motto suggests Vaughan Road students are in the school for the purpose of searching for and acquiring the knowledge and skills which may be used for the benefit of the community at large. The word "Quaesita" suggests effort sustained over a long period of time and also the application of the mind towards the attainment of a purpose. The words "In Medium" show that the purpose is not a selfish one, that students are aiming to prepare themselves for service to society.

School song[edit]

Colours red and blue and gold
Vaughan Road Academy we hail
For your honour we uphold
The torch and we'll never fail
Raise your glorious banners high
And forever let them fly
Cheer, cheer all cheer
Shout for all your might V.R.A.!

(Originally, the words Vaughan Road Academy and V.R.A. were Vaughan Road C.I. and V.R.C.I., respectively. In 1960-1963, the words in the song were Vaughan Collegiate and V.C.I. respectively)

School architecture[edit]

VRA, or Vaughan as it is affectionately known, from above appears as a near-isosceles right angle triangle with enclosed courtyard (in which a daycare for Vaughan students' children operates) of the same shape; the overall aerial view's reminiscence of The Pentagon lending the building the moniker "The Triagon". While the school letter is predictably "V" as chosen from the Latin alphabet, the lesser-known Greek school letter, Delta, is derived from the building's shape; as in the sciences Delta denotes change.

The first wing of the school was built in 1926, the second in 1931, and the third, which closed the "L" and turned it into a triangle, in 1967.

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Shirley Jane Endicott (1 January 2006). China Diary: The Life of Mary Austin Endicott. Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press. pp. 173–. ISBN 978-0-88920-815-5. 
  2. ^ "Goldstein: Vaughan Road Academy at 85". Toronto Sun, Lorrie Goldstein, May 07, 2011.
  3. ^ "Star academy Vaughan Road celebrates 85 years". North York Mirror, Mar 03, 2011
  4. ^ 2webbers. "ESP Online". Retrieved 14 July 2015. 
  5. ^ Sears Ontario Drama Festival, 2006 Showcase Awards
  6. ^ Canada at the International Olympiad in Informatics
  7. ^ a b c Vaughan Road Academy Hall of Fame, Vaughan Road Academy. Accessed August 7, 2007.
  8. ^ "Drake: 'I got my high school diploma'". The Washingtion Times. Retrieved 2015-10-25. 
  9. ^ Daniel Kremer (9 October 2015). Sidney J. Furie: Life and Films. University Press of Kentucky. pp. 12–. ISBN 978-0-8131-6598-1. 
  10. ^ Harris M. Lentz III (31 March 2016). Obituaries in the Performing Arts, 2015. McFarland. pp. 153–. ISBN 978-1-4766-2553-9. 
  11. ^ a b c "Hutt, William (1920-2007)", Canadian Communications Foundation. Accessed August 7, 2007.
  12. ^ Ouzounian, Richard. "William Hutt, 87: Renowned stage actor", Toronto Star, June 27, 2007. Accessed August 7, 2007.
  13. ^ "Yourhome is no longer available". thestar.com. 18 April 2013. Retrieved 14 July 2015. 
  14. ^ Arthur L. Schawlow: The Nobel Prize in Physics 1981, Nobelprize.org. Accessed August 7, 2007. "I attended public schools there, Winchester elementary school, the Normal Model School attached to the teacher's college, and Vaughan Road Collegiate Institute (high school)."
  15. ^ Rita Zekas (2008-09-05). "At 13, Samantha Weinstein already a TIFF veteran". thestar.com. Retrieved 2014-12-12. 

External links[edit]