Celebrating Black History Awareness Day
Jean Vanier Catholic Secondary School graciously welcomed students from each of our Halton Catholic Secondary Schools for a student-led celebration called Black History Awareness Day.

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On Tuesday, February 24, 2015, Jean Vanier Catholic Secondary School graciously welcomed students from each of our Halton Catholic Secondary Schools for a student-led celebration called Black History Awareness Day.

Every year, students and staff throughout the Board are invited to participate in Black History Month festivities and events, to honour and pay tribute to Black Canadians, and to pay homage to the many achievements Black Canadians have contributed to make Canada the culturally diverse, compassionate, and prosperous nation it is today.

This year, student trustees; Jason Barron, Chloe Kemeni, and Joel Louzado led the day by showcasing the talents of students across the HCDSB, and invited special guest speakers to motivate and inspire the crowd.

Highlights of the day included a keynote message from Karl Subban, father of three National Hockey League (NHL) players, as well as a video message from his sons: P. K. Subban, Montreal Canadiens’ defenceman; Malcolm Subban, Boston Bruins’ goaltender; and Jordan Subban, who was drafted by the Vancouver Canucks.

Karl, a retired school teacher and Principal in the Toronto District School Board, engaged students as he spoke about fulfilling his dreams and aspirations, and the keys to success. He explained his three-legged stool formula to students: "When one leg is missing, it's very difficult for it to be balanced. One leg of the stool stands for dreams. The second leg of the stool is the word belief. And if you are able to have a dream, if you are able to believe, then you will achieve."

In addition, Karl Subban's parting words were for the students to recite his message: "My potential lies inside of me. It gives me the ability to reach for something, to become something. Let's reach." For more information, read the full story in the Milton Canadian Champion: Catholic secondary school students celebrate Black History Month in Milton.

Following the motivational lesson, students participated in a riveting discussion where they were able to ask questions and converse with a panel of speakers who discussed the importance of recognizing Black History in our schools. The discussion included words of wisdom from Roger Nurse, Elementary School Teacher; Dennis Scott, Managing Director/Principal; and HairStory representatives, as part of the Ontario Provincial Advocate for Children & Youth.

The crowd went wild with excitement as students expressed themselves through poetry and story-telling, shared their vocal/musical talents, and performed choreographed dances. Great work to all students involved, including performances by Undefined Dance Crew, D Squared, Kitan Ademidun, Britney Boakye, Chelsea Dixon, Cliona Douah, Chloe Kemeni, and Joel Louzado.

From T-shirt tosses, to social media engagement, lively choreography, and to soulful music, Black History Awareness Day was an unforgettable experience! Thanks to all students, staff and community members, including The Burlington Caribbean Connection for their involvement throughout the day! ​​​​​​​​​​​​


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