Cardinal Carter Catholic Secondary School

2016 School Recipient of the Dr. Bette M. Stephenson Recognition of Achievement

2016 School Stories

Windsor Essex Catholic District School Board

Student population: 536; Grades: 9–12; Principal: Dwayne Brunet

  • Cardinal Carter is in Leamington, a community of 28 000 located on the north shore of Lake Erie that boasts it is “home to the largest concentration of greenhouses in North America.”
  • The school offers unique programming options, including sport academies and, beginning in September 2017, an agri-business academy.
  • The percentage of students in applied mathematics meeting the provincial standard has steadily increased from 21% in 2012 to 66% in 2016.
  • Struggling students are identified early (using data), and interventions are provided, including math help at lunch, support in class, and an eight-week twice-weekly after-school numeracy program.
Left to right: Dwayne Brunet (Principal), Sue Latour, Denise Sauve, Charbel Taouil

Cardinal Carter is a relatively small school with a diverse range of student learning needs. In order to support students with IEPs (about 23%), the staff is learning how to work with students’ strengths to overcome areas of challenge and bridge gaps. Teachers regularly participate in cross-panel professional learning cycles with feeder schools to create a deeper understanding of the curriculum, instruction and assessment strategies that support and improve learning for all.

Selection Criteria

To be considered, schools had to have

  • a program in applied Grade 9 mathematics, as this program was the focus of the selection;
  • a minimum of two sections of students in applied mathematics in 2016 (with a total number of students greater than 30);
  • results showing increases in five consecutive years in the number of students reaching the provincial standard in applied mathematics and
  • results in academic mathematics that were close to, at or above the provincial average and that improved or were relatively stable over the same five-year period.

What is the profile of this school community?

Profile of Grade 9 Students

ACADEMIC
APPLIED
Female
60%
39%
Male
40%
61%
English language learners
0%
8%
Special education needs
3%
24%
Speaks primarily a language other than English at home
1%
14%

How have the results improved?

Each year, the school looks at class profiles alongside EQAO primary- and junior-assessment results and cohort data trends, including in attitudes and behavior data. At the beginning of the school year, in meetings with other math departments in the board, staff members analyze the data and determine areas of need and improvement. As part of their work with the School Support Initiative, and now Achieving Excellence in Applied Courses, teams monitor student learning in response to evidence-based instructional strategies used in classrooms.

What initiatives have contributed to this improvement?

Developing High Expectations with Students

Having an experienced teacher who is driven and who uses creative teaching approaches is critical to maintaining or improving scores. Teachers have high expectations for their students and attempt to motivate them to do better. The staff believes that everyone can improve, and this message is communicated loudly and clearly to parents and students.

Supporting Learning with Manipulatives and Technology

Grade 9 math teachers think carefully about how they use differentiated instruction and technology to supplement classroom instruction to reach and engage multiple types of learners and learner profiles. Math games, individual white boards, iPads, computers and manipulatives are just a few of the high and low tech tools found in every Grade 9 and 10 math classroom. With the incorporation of these instructional tools, more students become interested in learning math.

Formative Assessment to Monitor Learning

Teachers use ongoing and deliberate formative assessment through journals, exit cards, vertical surfaces and Google Forms to help them identify student strengths and areas of difficulty and to help them provide well-timed responses. Students co-create learning goals and success criteria with their teacher. They are given multiple opportunities to demonstrate their understanding and, through descriptive feedback, are able monitor their progress without feeling as though they are always being evaluated.

More Resources

Grade 9

Sudbury Secondary School, Rainbow District School Board
Maxwell Heights Secondary School, Durham District School Board
M.M. Robinson High School, Halton District School Board
Elmira District Secondary School, Waterloo Region District School Board
St. Francis Xavier High School, Ottawa Catholic District School Board
John McCrae Secondary School, Ottawa-Carleton District School Board
Kenner Collegiate Vocational Institute, Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
Regiopolis-Notre Dame Catholic High School, Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic District School Board
St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School, Sudbury Catholic District School Board

Elementary Schools

Pine Grove Public School, District School Board of Niagara
St. Gabriel Catholic Elementary School, Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board
Sister Catherine Donnelly Catholic School, Simcoe County District School Board
St. Matthew Catholic School, Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board
Fleming Public School, Toronto District School Board
Springbrook Public School, Peel District School Board
Byron Southwood Public School, Thames Valley District School Board

OSSLT

Superior Collegiate and Vocational Institute, Lakehead District School Board
South Carleton High School, Ottawa-Carleton District School Board
Holy Names Catholic High School, Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board
Danforth Collegiate and Technical Institute, Toronto District School Board

Elementary Schools

McKellar Park Central School, Lakehead District School Board
St. Dominic Savio Catholic School, Waterloo Catholic District School Board
St. Bernadette Catholic School, Durham Catholic District School Board
Beverley Heights Middle School, Toronto District School Board
Pius XII Catholic Elementary, Sudbury Catholic District School Board
Sir William Gage Middle School, Peel District School Board
St. Martin School, Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board
D. Roy Kennedy Public School, Ottawa-Carleton District School Board

Grade 9

Maple High School, York Region District School Board
Essex District High School, Greater Essex County District School Board
Mississauga Secondary School, Peel District School Board
Governor Simcoe Secondary School, District School Board of Niagara
Cardinal Carter Catholic Secondary School, Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board
Earl Haig Secondary School, Toronto District School Board

Elementary Schools

St. Edmund Separate School, Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board
Pleasantville Public School, York Region District School Board
Nelles Public School, District School Board of Niagara
St. Luke Catholic Elementary School, Nipissing-Parry Sound Catholic District School Board
St. Aloysius Catholic Elementary School, Waterloo Catholic District School Board
Centennial Road Junior Public School, Toronto District School Board
Dunlace Public School, Toronto District School Board
St. John XXIII Catholic School, Renfrew County Catholic District School Board
E. J. James Public School, Halton District School Board

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