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School Profile

Our Community

Our School Council provides a forum for parents and the broader community to share their ideas and hopes for our students. We work collaboratively to keep parents and our community informed about educational issues and school activities. Our School Council meets one Tuesday each month at 6:30 p.m. in the conference room. All parents are welcome to attend. Merivale’s community partners include: Carleton University, and Algonquin College and many employers and partner agencies. We enjoy close relationships with our feeder schools, whereby their students attend our annual musical, concerts, Art Show and athletic days.
 
Our Leadership Class has partnered with the Viewmount Seniors Residence, spending time with the seniors and providing some recreational programming. In thanks for the partnership, the residence made a donation to the class’ Toy Mountain campaign.  The class also runs a canned food drive at Thanksgiving and hosts grade 8 feeder school visits.

Mission Statement

Moniti Meliora

“Having been advised, let us pursue better things”

We believe in providing mentoring, advice and guidance to our students. We will lead students to improve themselves and to pursue a better future. We believe in our students!

Programs and Services

Academic Programs

Merivale delivers a comprehensive program with extensive course offerings in Fine Arts, Athletics, and Technology.

  • Inclusive Learning Support and Student Success Initiatives
  • Rigorous academic programs for all pathways (Gifted, French Immersion, Employment , College and University)
  • OCDSB Gifted Centre
  • Communication and Design Specialist High Skills Major program
  • Award winning Music program (including steel pan drums)
  • Innovative Technical programs
  • Cooperative Education offering Apprenticeship (OYAP) and Dual Credit programs through Algonquin College
  • Challenging Outdoor Education and Personal Fitness Programs
  • Dynamic Fine Arts and Photography courses
  • French Immersion Programs
  • International Certificate Program

Classroom Organization

Merivale High School offers programming for students in grades 7-12.

Our Intermediate Program operates on a balanced school day schedule. Students access specialized areas for music, physical education, art and design and technology. 

Our Secondary Program is structured by semester with a two-day rotating timetable. The daily schedule consists of four 75-minute classes. Our band programs operate outside the regular day schedule and run all year long.

Special Education

Special Education programs at Merivale High School are a reflection of our overall school goal to provide extensive support to ensure all students achieve at their highest potential. The learning needs of students are met through Resource Support, Learning Strategies courses, our Student Success Program, ongoing extra help, peer tutoring, homework and reading programs primarily located in “The Zone”.

Clubs and Activities

Merivale students have access to an exceptional range of co-curricular activities:

Clubs

The clubs vary every year and can include: Music Council, Athletic Council, Muslim Prayer Group, Audio Visual, Cappies Critics’ Team, Reach for the Top, Drama Council, Rainbow Nation, Students’ Council, Jewish Culture Club, Swing Club, Me to We to Tree, Foreign Film Appreciation Club

Sports

Sports are seasonal and can include: Badminton, Baseball, Basketball, Cross Country Running, Curling, Field Hockey, Hockey, Nordic Skiing, Rugby, Soccer, Swimming, Touch Football, Track and Field, Ultimate Frisbee, Volleyball at the Varsity or Jr/Sr levels for boys and girls.

Safe Schools Initiatives

Code of Behaviour

Our guiding principles are respect for self, respect for others and respect for the learning environment. We will work together to ensure that students learn in a tolerant, positive and supportive environment with a clear focus on learning.  Additionally students are expected to follow the OCDSB guidelines for dress appropriately.  We support positive relationships through programs and clubs such as:

  • LINK Crew Grade 9 Mentoring Program
  • Leadership Development Class
  • Character Development Initiatives
  • Rainbow Nation
  • School Resource Officer
  • First Friday and First Monday
  • Breakfast Program

Facilities and Resources

  • Music facilities with individual practice rooms
  • Two drama studios, two arts studios and a photography lab
  • Fully serviced Learning Commons with lendable technology, Resource Centre and printer access
  • Learning Support Centre
  • Double gymnasium, fully equipped exercise/weight room, 2 extensive playing fields and track, a neighbouring hockey arena
  • Renewed Science labs, computer labs, and a nutrition lab
  • State-of-the-art facilities for Transportation, Construction, Communication and Design Programs

Achievement and School Improvement Planning

Measures of Student Achievement and Success

  • 53% of our graduates were Ontario Scholars in 2015. (over 80% grade average).
    Twenty-five graduates were OCDSB Silver Medal Winners (over 90% grade average).
  • Many graduates earned scholarships from Universities and Community Foundations
  • Merivale High School students have consistently excelled in the University of Waterloo Math and Chemistry contests as well as the Open Canadian Mathematics and math league contests.
  • Strong results have been achieved in contests in Biology, Physics, Chemistry and French Public Speaking.

Many students have placed within the top category for major academic contests in mathematics and sciences. Grade 9 EQAO and board wide grade 10 mathematics results indicate the majority of Merivale students are performing at or above the provincial standard.

  • Last year, 97 Merivale students awarded graduate certificates in French Immersion, DELF, SHSM , Inernational Certificate and Fine Arts.

Merivale received the Dr. Bette M. Stephenson Recognition of Achievement award.

School Improvement Plans and Initiatives

  • Merivale’s School Improvement Plans will align with the District K-12 School Effectiveness Framework and focus on five key areas at all times.
  • School and Classroom Organization: We will establish and maintain a serious and focused learning environment.
  • Curriculum and Teaching and Learning Practices: We will focus on key learning expectations and we will provide personalized assessment and feedback.
  • Intervention & Closing the Gaps: We will provide additional time and support to ensure all students meet with success.
  • Programs and Pathways: We will provide intellectually stimulating instruction for all students and challenge gifted and high achieving students through our Congregated Gifted courses and Enriched courses leading to our Advanced Placement Program.

Home, School, and Community Partnerships: We will collaborate with our parents and the broader community.

Highlights from our Improvement Plan include:

To ensure our grade 9 students have a successful start to their high school years, Merivale High School will offer a “LINK Crew” mentoring program for all grade 9 students in 2012-2013. Each grade 9 student will be linked to a senior mentor who will provide academic, social and peer mentoring through a leadership course. 

Our Student Success team will be focusing on improving credit accumulation for grade 9 and 10 students. This will be done during each semester as our Student Success Team collaborates with grade 9 and 10 teachers to intervene with students at risk of losing a credit through credit intervention and credit rescue days. In the instances when a credit is not achieved, the student may be considered for Credit Recovery - a class in which one or multiple credits are recovered in a multiple-discipline classroom setting.

Our primary goal is closing the achievement gap while raising the achievement level of mathematics students, particularly our under-performing students. We will increase the number of students meeting or exceeding the provincial standard, particularly in grades 9 and 10 mathematics courses. Instruction will emphasize process expectations and skills development. Mathematics evaluations will be designed with more choice to suit a variety of learning styles and allow for a differentiated approach to truly reflect the degree to which students are meeting the curriculum expectations and provide ample opportunity for students to monitor their own progress with regard to this. The TIPS4RM materials will be used to deliver the Grade 9 and 10 applied math courses, with this approach to mathematics instruction being used to guide all delivery. Teachers will continue to model the use of technology and innovation in teaching practices, and encourage technology as a tool for developing students’ conceptual understanding. We will continue to offer Math extra-help sessions at lunch and after school. Our senior math students offer tutoring services to younger students as part of our peer mentoring program.

Our Literacy initiatives will be directed to increase overall credit accumulation in grades 9 and 10 Applied English courses. During 2012-2013 we will include instructional units in Oral Communication and Media Studies. Specific instructional strategies will focus on high interest, culturally relevant reading materials and summative tasks which allow students to differentiate products based on their personal learning style.
Learning Support Teachers will continue to deliver support and Learning Strategies Courses to assist students in developing individual goals and strategies for success in all subject areas. Our Advanced Placement Coordinator and Gifted Program Coordinator will continue to provide professional development activities for Gifted and AP teachers, which will ensure the long-term success of these programs.

Leadership Recognition

“Leadership in the OCDSB is the demonstration of personal
initiative to achieve a positive outcome.”

Students

Promoting student leadership is an integral part of our vision. Students’ Council, Athletic Council, Music Council and Drama Council are examples of student-led organizations that enhance the quality of life at Merivale. Student-run initiatives include holding the “Sports Day - The Girls Way”, Grade 8 boys’ Character Development day, Grade 8 girls’ and boys’ Self-Esteem days to ease the transition from feeder schools to high school. Merivale students in groups, such as Leadership Class, Students’ Council and United Colours, participate in a number of fundraising activities donating thousands of dollars, food and clothing items to charities including: the United Way, the CHEO Telethon, Toy Mountain, Thanksgiving Canned Food Drive, Ottawa Hospital Foundation, Ottawa Food Bank, YMCA-YWCA, Canadian Cancer Society, Harmony House, Juvenile Diabetes and Ryan’s Well Foundation.

In addition to informal recognition on a regular basis, we also acknowledge student contributions in our classrooms, school announcements, newsletters, assemblies, “Character Post Cards”, monthly “Sundae School” meetings, our principal’s report to School Council, our annual Junior Awards Ceremony and our Commencement Ceremony. We consult with Students’ Council on a regular basis when doing long-term planning.

Staff

Our staff members have a wealth of professional qualifications including Masters Degrees in Education, Arts, Fine Arts, Physical Education and Sciences, a Law Degree, Bachelor’s Degrees as well as additional qualifications in Special Education, Music, Visual Arts, Guidance, and Computers in Education. Teachers actively participate in numerous District-wide and Provincial professional development. We recognize their initiative by providing and supporting opportunities for further professional growth. We also recognize staff leadership via personal interactions with one another, letters of thanks, school announcements, school newsletters, assemblies, performance appraisals, and our principal’s report to School Council. Our teachers have received numerous recognitions for their contributions, particularly in the Art’s.

Parents/Guardians/Volunteers

Merivale is a school community that thrives on the contributions of parents and volunteers. Through our partnership with the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation, we are able to attract a talented and committed group of volunteers. Our volunteers have contributed over countless hours of support annually in diverse capacities such as coaching, tutoring, library support, working in classrooms (e.g., Special Education and French language support), supervising field trips, and planning school-related events such as career fairs and awards evenings. As invaluable partners, we continue to thank our volunteers on an on-going basis and look for opportunities to acknowledge them through our school announcements, newspaper and our principal’s report to School Council. School Council hosts a night called “Celebrating our Global Community” to help parents within our community connect with one another, with staff and with School Council.

Community

Merivale is surrounded by a supportive business community. A large number of local businesses regularly contribute prizes to support school activities. Local grocery stores and restaurants provide ongoing support for student and staff initiatives. We recognize our community partners through our school announcements, school newsletters, school web-site, principal’s report to School Council, and thank-you cards. We also invite community members to School Council meetings, to student-run initiatives and to awards ceremonies.

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