School News & Announcements

May 20th Update

posted May 20, 2020, 9:36 AM by Brent Hopkins   [ updated May 21, 2020, 11:22 AM ]

May 20, 2020

Dear Parents / Guardians, 

Yesterday a message was sent by the Ottawa Catholic School Board to all families advising that Premier Ford has extended the current school closure for the balance of the 2019-20 academic year (May 19th OCSB Message).  We are currently in our 9th week of Learning from Home.  Teachers will continue to support learning using the processes already in place.  

We know that many students were hoping to learn that there would be a return to classes - even if only for a few weeks. This school closure period has been challenging for the entire school community. We appreciate your continued efforts to support your children as they work from home.  The learning that is occurring will prove beneficial when they embark on next year’s courses. 

Next week we will provide detailed information regarding how and when students will be able to access the building to collect personal items from their lockers.  Our site-based plan will adhere to direction provided by Ottawa Public Health.  

We have had several inquiries about our Annual Cake Auction.  The Cake Auction is a very important annual event in our school year calendar.  We very much appreciate your generosity and support each May.  Given the circumstances, however, it was decided that we would not hold a cake auction (or a virtual replacement event) this year, but we plan to do so again next May. 

The following are three, of many, on-going alternative initiatives with which the school is connected that support community needs:

Catholic Education Foundation of Ottawa (CEFO)

The Catholic Education Foundation of Ottawa (CEFO) is a registered charity whose main focus is to raise funds to help alleviate poverty for students in the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB).  Since March 23rd, CEFO has provided over $106,000 in emergency donations to 383 OCSB families.

Knights of Columbus Charity Draw.  

The Knights of Columbus have launched their annual Charity Lottery Draw.  Information about the fundraising campaign can be found by clicking here.  Each year the Stittsville Knights of Columbus donate  a portion of the proceeds from the campaign  to provide a bursary to a graduating Sacred Heart student.

Ottawa Race Weekend

This year’s event takes place virtually and has been extended so as to take place over several months.  Youth (18 and under) are able to register at a discounted rate.  For information about the event, how to register and/or participating charities visit:


We have begun the process of providing refunds for several school-based activities or excursions that did not take place due to the school closure.  If payment was originally completed through School Cash Online then refunds will be issued through the same program.  Cheques will be issued in instances where payment was originally made by cash or cheque to the school. Cheques  that were not deposited will be returned. Should you have any questions regarding refunds please email .  We appreciate your patience as we work through the process. 

We hope you and your family continue to stay safe and well. 

Brent Hopkins


May 5th Update

posted May 5, 2020, 1:52 PM by Brent Hopkins

Dear  Parents and Guardians, 

As we begin week 7 of Learning from Home we have several updates and information items we’d like to share with you.

Exams & PD Days

Last week the Minister of Education confirmed that, regardless of whether the school closure continues into June or not, there will be no final exams in high school courses.  All exam days and scheduled PD days are now instructional days for all students K-12.

High School Marks

By the end of this week all high school students will have been provided their ‘baseline mark’ by their subject teachers.  This is the mark determined based on work completed prior to the school closure beginning.  Marks will not fall below the baseline mark established.  The learning currently underway will help prepare students for their academic pursuits next year.  Additionally, assessments completed under our current Learning from Home model can result in improvement in course marks.  

Catholic Education Week: May 4-8, 2020

This week is Catholic Education Week and the week’s theme is Igniting Hope.

Students, families, and staff, through social media, are invited to participate by sharing messages of hope to the following:

Monday: For the ones we love, send a message of hope to someone in your family

Tuesday: For the ones who teach us, send a message of hope to your teacher(s)

Wednesday: For leaders, send a message of hope to a leader in your community/in the world (government leaders, school board leaders, your parish priest, Archbishop Prendergast, Pope Francis, etc.)

Thursday: For those in need and for those who care for them, send a message of hope to a nursing home, hospital, the Mission, Shepherds of Good Hope, frontline and healthcare workers

Friday: For yourself, send a message of hope, for today and the future. 

Run For It

The Run for It program is an 8-week mental health program for students that incorporates physical activity and weekly challenges to positively associate the effects of physical activity on mental health wellness. Since 2015, the Run for It program has helped thousands of Canadian students discover strategies to manage mental health, reaching over 200 schools and 4800 students in 17 Canadian cities in 2019.  Additional information available at:

Run for It has partnered with the Canadian Mental Health Association to develop a program that will allow students to:

• Discover the source of their COVID-19 related anxiety

• Take steps to self-care

This year’s program will shift primarily on-line.  Sacred Heart will once again be participating. Students interested in joining this year’s Run For It team are invited to send and email to Ms. Nelson to register (  


CHEO will be hosting a free webinar for parents called the Pandemic Parenting Playbook on May 14th at 1:30 pm.  The session runs for 1-hour and is led by a panel of Mental Health Hub Specialists.   To register please visit:

The Canadian Centre for Child Protection’s website contains several resources for students and parents - including online safety tips.  For more information please visit:

2020-21 Registration

Should you be aware of any families in the community who intend to register for next year and have not already done so - now is the time!  We are in the midst of staffing and scheduling for the 2020-21 school year. Registrations can be initiated online by visiting

As always, we hope that you and your family are safe and well.  

Brent Hopkins


Letter to Graduates - May 2, 2020

posted May 3, 2020, 11:44 AM by Brent Hopkins   [ updated May 3, 2020, 11:44 AM ]

May 2nd, 2020.


Dear Graduating Students, 

Yesterday you received a letter from the Director of the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB), Denise Andre.  Included in her message was an update regarding graduation ceremonies.  Specifically, that the plan will be to host your graduation ceremony in the fall - most likely on or just before the Thanksgiving weekend in October.  Like many venues, our graduation site (Sensplex) is closed until at least July and gathering sizes are likely to be restricted for some time even after it opens.  We hope that a fall commencement will allow for the full graduation ceremony we know you deserve.  

All graduation awards will be determined prior to the end of this year.  Award recipients will be announced in late June.  We will also recognize recipients in the fall as part of the graduation ceremony.  You will have the opportunity to select a Valedictorian prior to the end of school year.  

While we will be moving forward with a graduation ceremony for the class of 2020 in the fall, the decision has been made that school proms will not be rescheduled.  This applies to all Ottawa Catholic schools.  We know that this is disappointing news.   It is an event that graduates very much look forward to, and one that our school community takes pride in hosting.    

We have made the decision to refund graduation fees ($100) to students and their families.  This will take time to process due to the  level of refund activity underway across the school board.  

As grade 12 students the impact of the school closure has been particularly challenging and the unexpected effects of COVID-19 have impacted you on several levels.  We are inspired by the perseverance and determination that you’ve demonstrated over these last six weeks.  We continue to be proud of your leadership, resolve and dedication.  The class of 2020 has made a lasting impression on Sacred Heart.  It will be an honour to celebrate your success next fall. 


Brent Hopkins


Update on Graduation Ceremony

posted May 1, 2020, 12:34 PM by School Websites

Please see Director of Education Denise Andre's 
letter to the graduating class of 2020 regarding the status of this year's graduation ceremonies.

April 26th Update

posted Apr 26, 2020, 12:27 PM by Brent Hopkins   [ updated Apr 26, 2020, 1:15 PM ]

Dear Students, Parents and Guardians, 

Today the province confirmed that schools will remain closed until at least the end of the month.  Tomorrow we will embark on our 6th week of learning from home.  While we know that in most instances, Learning from Home is not the preferred model of instruction, I would like to acknowledge the efforts so many are making to do their best under the circumstances.  

There are several other updates we’d like to share with you. 

Grade 12 Midterm Marks

Last week grade 12 students were provided with midterm marks.  Those marks will be shared with the Ontario University Application Centre (OUAC) and the Ontario College Application Service (OCAS) at the beginning of this week.  

Prom / Graduation Update

In light of today’s announcement we will not be able to move forward with our planned gr 12 prom date of May 29th.  As time passed it became increasingly less likely that prom could take place on May 29th.   However, we wanted to be prepared for all possibilities. We are investigating alternatives with the venue (Infinity Centre), but we aren’t in a position to make any definitive decisions at this point.  

In addition to prom, I know that many students and families are concerned about our graduation ceremony.  Discussions are also on-going about the possibility of moving commencement ceremonies to a later date if we find ourselves in the position that we cannot host the event in late June as planned.  Currently our graduation ceremony is scheduled to take place on the morning of June 25th.  However, we are aware that our venue, the Sensplex, has announced that they intend to remain closed until at least June 30th.

When we move forward it will be based on the recommendations we receive from Ottawa Public Health.  These are important events for our graduating students and we are committed to keeping you informed as information becomes available.

Deadline for Dropping Semester 2 Courses Extended

Typically students have 5 instructional days after midterm report cards are issued to withdraw from a course and not have the mark subject to disclosure when applying to colleges and universities (only grade 11 and 12 marks). The deadline to do so was previously communicated as being April 30th.  This year, however, the Ministry of Education has announced that the deadline has been extended to May 6th.  Students are invited to contact a school guidance counselor if they would like to discuss withdrawals.  

Summer School Update

Continuing & Community Education has provided an update regarding Summers School programming for 2020.The following changes have been made:

In-Class Reach Ahead - If a Reach Ahead course cannot be taught on site, distance learning will be utilized by the summer school teacher;

Online Reach Ahead - Online courses will be taught via D2L/Brightspace;

Skills Builder - This program will not be offered during summer 2020;

SHSM CO-OP - This program will not be offered during summer 2020;

Credit Recovery - An update will be provided at a future date.

To register for a Reach Ahead course (ie Online or In-Class), learners and parents will be required to complete a new online registration formTo view a full list of course offerings - click here .  

Students are invited to request an guidance appointment by visiting if they would like to discuss Summer School questions with a school  counselor.

Message from Student Council

Earlier this week our Student Council shared the following video message with students: A message from SHHS Stud Co. .  I’d like to take this opportunity to thank them for their on-going efforts to support our school community.

We continue to pray for the safety and well-being of all the members of our school community. 

Brent Hopkins


Mental Health Resource Links

posted Apr 24, 2020, 7:23 AM by Kelly Nixon

Information from Youth Services Bureau
More local and school information 

Google Password Phishing Attempts

posted Apr 17, 2020, 11:39 AM by Kelly Nixon

Dear Students, Parents and Guardians, 

Re:Google Password Phishing Attempts

We have had several reports of students receiving messages that appear to have been sent from the school or school board but are in fact not legitimate email messages.  In each of these situations the individual posing as a staff member requests that the student receiving the message responds to the email and provides their Google password.  

The sender is phishing for information. Phishing is when someone posing as a legitimate individual or institution attempts to lure individuals into providing sensitive data.

The school board attempts to filter out as many of these messages as possible, but on occasion they do make it to student and staff inboxes.

Neither the school or the school board (OCSB) will ever send students a message requesting they provide their student password.  These messages should be ignored and/or deleted. 

For your information, here are some more important phishing tips to be aware of care of the Government of Canada - Get Cyber Safe : 7 Red Flags of Phishing

Mr. Hopkins


Sacred Heart High School

April 15th Update

posted Apr 15, 2020, 6:45 AM by Brent Hopkins   [ updated Apr 15, 2020, 6:46 AM ]

Dear Parents/Guardians, 

We’re in the midst of our 4th week of Learning from Home.  We will continue to use our recommended weekly schedules as guidelines (Sample 7&8 Visual Planner, Recommended High School Schedule).  We are still in the process of adopting this new model of delivery.  Each day seems to bring new challenges, but progress is being made in establishing new learning routines.  

Late last week an update was sent to all grade 12 students (Grade 12 Update).  Teachers will share midterm marks with grade 12 students later this month.  Midterm reporting will only take place for grade 12 students. All students will receive final marks in June.

Yesterday, Premier Doug Ford announced that the school closure will extend past the tentative May 4th date provided earlier in April.  We expect further details to be provided by the Ministry of Education in the coming days.  

Last week staff delivered Chromebooks to families that did not have access to devices at home.  We are aware that several families in our school community do not have internet access. The Board has secured a large number of internet sticks that will be dispersed across the system.  We have requested support for Sacred Heart families who are without internet connectivity.  

We have already begun planning for next school year.  Scheduling and staffing processes take place each spring in preparation for the following year.  Should you be aware of any families in the community who are not already part of Sacred Heart, but who would like to register for 2020-21 - registration can be initiated by visiting: .   

To help support the growth of our school community a 4th vice-principal has been appointed to the school for the 2020-21 school year.  We’re happy to share that Ms. Angelina Glynn will be joining our admin team next year as a vice-principal. Ms. Glynn is currently serving as a vice-principal at St. Joseph High School in Barrhaven.  Ms. Vandewint, Ms. Gillier-Symes, Mr. MacEachern and I will all remain at Sacred Heart. Additionally, we will welcome a new Religion Department Head to our leadership team in September. Ms. Catherine Carnegie (currently at St. Mark HS) has been appointed to the role.  Finally, we congratulate Mr. Chis Verberne who will be leaving Sacred Heart at the end of the year. Mr. Verberne has been appointed a vice-principal at Immaculata High School. 

Below please find updates from our Student Services Department and our Yearbook team, respectively:

A message from our Student Services Department:

We hope you are keeping well, physically distancing and socially connecting as we all find new ways to reach each other while taking care of ourselves. Try to:  eat healthy foods, stay hydrated, exercise, practice a relaxation technique, safely talk with family and friends and reach out for support if you need it

Resources: for SHHS guidance appointments

Youth Mental Health Resource Lab 

West Ottawa Community Center 613 591 3686

Zone, Zone-Plus, and Queerios offer virtual youth drop-ins

Youth Service Bureau   Crisis Line:  613-260-2360

Ottawa Public Health 

Distress Centre of Ottawa 

Kids Help Phone.

 Calm App

Thank you to many of you who are reaching out to your neighbours, families and friends. We are here and will get through this together as a community. Stay home, stay healthy, and reach out to us if you need support.

 Yearbook Update:

Each spring in late March / early April our yearbook is submitted to our publisher for manufacturing.  The final touches have been made to our 2019-20 yearbook. There are a limited number of yearbooks available for purchase ($50) through School Cash Online (  

Thank you for your continued support.

Brent Hopkins


Learning From Home - April 6 2020

posted Apr 6, 2020, 7:06 AM by Kelly Nixon

Dear Parents/Guardians, 

Last week the Ministry of Education announced that schools will remain closed until at least May 4th.  As a result, we now know that the duration of Learning From Home will last a minimum of 6 weeks. Over the course of these first two weeks staff have been supporting students while also working to adapt course material and direction for distance learning. 

Beginning today, grade 7&8 homeroom teachers will be emailing a Weekly Visual Planner each Monday (exception: Tues. April 14th following Easter) to the students in their homeroom.  The document will contain work instructions from all subject teachers for the week ahead (Sample 7&8 Visual Planner).  

To help students in high school we are recommending the following weekly schedule: Recommended High School Schedule.  In general, high school teachers will also be sharing work instructions with students on Mondays each week.

We hope that these schedules will help students establish a learning routine during this time away.  However, it is important to know that students have the discretion to complete weekly work on a schedule that is most conducive to their circumstances. There are a great number of complex challenges being faced by families in our community, and as such we are employing a flexible approach. 

Teachers will continue to provide feedback and assess student work.  The school board provided an update regarding how assessment will be undertaken during the closure period  (please see OCSB update for families - April 4, 2020).  It is very important for students to understand that their continued investment in learning will have two important impacts.  First, improvement in a student’s overall final mark can be achieved. More importantly, the skills and knowledge acquired will be essential building blocks for future courses.  

As we near Easter, I continue to be amazed by the generosity, gratitude and optimism or the Sacred Heart community of students, parents and staff - evidence of our belief in faith and resurrection.  

Please continue to take care of yourselves and your family.

Brent Hopkins


March 31st Update

posted Mar 31, 2020, 8:56 AM by Brent Hopkins

Dear Parents/Guardians, 

Over the course of the past 7 school days teachers have been working to establish communication with students and to provide initial work instructions as we progress through this period of school closure.  

There are still several school-related matters for which our school board (OCSB) is awaiting clarification from the Ministry of Education.  An announcement is expected as early as later today regarding the extension of the school closure.   

We hope that students are beginning to establish a learning from home routine. Teachers will continue to direct student learning throughout this time away. It’s also important for students to know that they are welcome to reach out to their teachers for support.  We realize that, in many cases, this period of school closure is resulting in an additional strain at home. We thank you for supporting your children through this period.  

On Monday, the school board shared several updates (March 30th Update from OCSB).  They will continue to communicate on a regular basis. 

We are still awaiting responses to our Digital Access Survey from many students. The survey can be accessed by logging into .  Survey results can be viewed by each student’s respective teachers. 

Students who would like to connect with a guidance counselor are also able to do so by requesting an appointment through our site.  

We look forward to continuing to work with you as we persevere through this period.  


Brent Hopkins


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