St. Edmund Separate School

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

Photo of School

2016 School Stories

Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board

Student population: 325; Grades: JK–8; Principal: Anna Pascolo-Maltby

  • One of the oldest Catholic elementary schools in the city of Mississauga
  • Multi-generational school
  • Recent upward socio-economic trends
  • Engaged parent community and visible school council-
Joanne Roddy-Rodrigues, Anna Pascolo-Maltby (Principal), Mary Beth St. Louis, Gráinne Maddison, Nuno Tome and Joanne Romano

St. Edmund Separate School has been serving the city of Mississauga since 1959. Many of the students have parents and grandparents that attended St. Edmund’s. The school has strong ties to the community and is very active in engaging its community in school initiatives.

“Support from teachers and easy access to technology that I need helps me with math and my learning.”

— Grade 8 Student

Selection Criteria

EQAO considered schools that:

  • had a significant proportion of students who did not meet the provincial math standard in Grade 3 but who improved to meet it when they were in Grade 6 and
  • maintained or increased the overall number of students meeting the provincial standard in math.

What is the profile of this school community?

Profile of Grade 3 and Grade 6 Students

Grade 3
Grade 6
Special education needs
English language learners
Born outside Canada
First language learned at home was other than English

How have the results improved?

St. Edmund Separate School has shown tremendously high achievement levels in all components of the EQAO assessments over the past three years. The students have consistently risen to the provincial standard in mathematics from Grade 3 to Grade 6 at a rate of 15% since 2013. Although the school’s Grade 3 achievement levels in mathematics are high, staff continue to find ways to help most of the students who did not meet the math standard when they were in Grade 3 to improve to meet it in Grade 6.

“The St. Edmund’s Family Math Night was a great chance to meet with teachers and other parents and see math in action. The way math is taught today may be different from the experience many parents had, so it’s great to understand how math is being taught today. It’s important that we, as parents, understand how we can support our students to help them learn and succeed. In particular, the focus on everyday math skills is essential, because our kids need to understand early that math is not just a school skill, it’s a life skill.”
— Patricia Meehan, School Council Chair

What initiatives have contributed to this improvement?

The Power of Community

There is a strong belief that everyone in the community is a teacher. Staff, family and community workers co-educate, co-learn and co-create opportunities for everyone. All members of the community are valued and trusted.

Data-Driven Resource Support

Students at St. Edmund are assessed for learning to determine the best possible course of action to ensure that all students’ needs are addressed. The process begins in June, when students are placed in groups according to their needs and the human resources available to support them in the upcoming school year. Programs are set up throughout the year to address the specific needs determined.

Collaborating and Co-Teaching with the Community

Internal and external resources are called upon to augment regular school programming at St. Edmund. Volunteers are valued for the skills that they bring to the school, and all volunteers are educators to the students—not just “classroom helpers.” Outside resources that are brought in are focused and have a clear plan as to their role in improving student learning.

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