Western Canada High School
|Western Canada High School|
Motto: Intelligentia, Vires, Virtus
(Latin for: Understanding, Strength, Courage)
|642 17 Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta, T2S 0B5
|Type||Private (1903 - 1928, as Western Canada College)
Public (since 1928)
|School board||Calgary Board of Education|
|Assistant principals||Cheryl McKelvie, Lynn Rule, Jayme McDonald|
|• Grade 10||650|
|• Grade 11||675|
|• Grade 12||731|
|Communities served||Mount Royal Mission, Cliff Bungalow, Connaught|
|Last updated: June 14, 2015|
Western Canada High School (WCHS) is a public senior high school in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. It has classes for grades 10 through 12. Western is located in the 17th Avenue business district of the Lower Mount Royal community, and is the most centrally located public high school in Calgary.
The original school building was completed in 1903 as a British-style exclusive high school for boys called Western Canada College (not a college in the North American sense of the word). It was created by "The Western Canada College Bill of Incorporating Ordinance" enacted by the Government of the Northwest Territories, which Calgary was then a part of before the province of Alberta was created in 1905.
A granite shaft bearing a Cross of Sacrifice was dedicated as a list of honour memorial to Western Canada College students who were killed during the First World War and who served during the Second World War, the Korean War and as peacekeepers.
The private school had financial problems and was sold to the Calgary Board of Education. The CBE renamed it, re-opened it as public school, and constructed additional buildings on the land. To raise funds for the new college, 5000 shares were sold for $10 each. Many of the original investors read like a "Who's Who" list for Alberta; Pat Burns, R. B. Bennett, A.E. Cross, William Pearce, A.C. Rutherford (who was premier at the time), and George Lane.
Western was Calgary's first composite high school, providing both technical and academic courses of study. The school has been substantially renovated and additions have been made to the building over the years. Linda Raasveldt became the first female principal of the school in 2002. The school recently underwent a series of renovations which were completed in Fall 2012.
The school provides French and English language as a primary language instruction. In addition, it is one of a select number of schools in Calgary to offer French immersion. Western is one of a small number of Calgary high schools to offer an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme Each year, about 20-40 students graduate with an IB Diploma, and significantly more graduate with an IB certificate. The school also offers an extensive performing and visual arts program, and offers a certificate to recognize students that have made fine arts a focus of learning at the high school level.
The school boasts teams in the following sports:
- Cross Country
- Field Hockey
- Swim and Dive
- Track and Field
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Dance
- Conrad Bain - Actor, known for his portrayal of Phillip Drummond on Diff'rent Strokes.
- Ryan Belleville - Actor, Writer, Comedian.
- Barney Bentall - Singer/Songwriter: Barney Bentall and the Legendary Hearts
- Braids - Art rock band, known for their critically acclaimed debut album Native Speaker
- Jim Dinning - Former Alberta treasurer
- Emerson Frostad, Olympic and professional baseball player.
- Daniel Philip Hays - Speaker of the Canadian Senate
- Pat Kelly - Comedian, actor, and TV host.
- Norman Kwong - Lieutenant-Governor of Alberta and the youngest athlete to be a member of a winning Grey Cup team in the Canadian Football League (CFL). He is a member of the Order of Canada.
- Jan Lisiecki, classical pianist
- Suzette Mayr, Canadian novelist and poet.
- Ryan Northcott, actor, known for his role in Mystery, Alaska, among other TV and Movie Roles.
- Daniel Okulitch, Operatic Bass-Baritone. Starred in Baz Luhrmann's Broadway Production of La Bohème, and the World Premiere of The Fly (opera), by Howard Shore and Directed by David Cronenberg.
- Larry Robinson - Played with the Calgary Stampeders from 1961 to 1974, winning the Grey Cup in 1971. He was the first player in the CFL to score over 1,000 points in a career.
- Kinnie Starr - Singer/Songwriter who was nominated for the Juno Award for New Artist of the Year in 2004.
- Taryn Swiatek - Former member of the Canada women's national soccer team which placed fourth in the FIFA Women's World Cup competition in 2003.
- St. Mary's High School - The only other high school in the nearby area. It also predates the province of Alberta.
- Student Population by Grade, School and Authority, Alberta (PDF). Alberta Education. Retrieved August 16, 2009.
- WCHS historical timeline
- http://www.cmp-cpm.forces.gc.ca/dhh-dhp/nic-inm/sm-rm/mdsr-rdr-eng.asp?PID=1344 War memorial
- Jim Dinning biography (personal web site)
- Lau, Michael, "A century of schooling: Western Canada High School turns 100 in 2003 and alumni are planning a mega reunion complete with tunnel tours", Calgary Herald, September 28, 2000, pg. 2
- Lewis, Jason (2004-09-09). "The doctor of love is in: Former Loose Moose improviser plays the ladies’ man in Intern Academy". FFWD Weekly. Retrieved 2006-08-08.
- The Alberta Order of Excellence - Profile of Norman Kwong
- "Top-Ten All-time players from Alberta (Football Alberta)", CANOE JAM! Sports
- Stampeders player profile for Larry Robinson
- Wilton, Lisa, "New Starr of hip-hop", CANOE JAM! Showbiz
- Maxwell, Cameron, "Swiatek sets sights on China", Calgary Sun, Canadian Online Explorer, January 27, 2002.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Western Canada High School.|
- Western Canada High School official site
- Western Canada High School Fine Arts
- WCHS Alumni Association
- Western Canada College at the Calgary Public Library - Photo of the original building. (via Internet Archive)
- "Western Canada College Old Boys Doing Their Bit / Calgary Herald - July 4, 1916
- Calgary Aviator (R.N.A.S.) Gets Distinguished Service Cross - Squadron Commander Gerald Hervey / Calgary Herald - October 30, 1917
- "History of Western Canada College Told" / Calgary Herald - February 08, 1930
- "College Cenotaph Unveiled Sunday" / Calgary Herald - August 27, 1928