Clarkson Secondary School

June 2019

Principal's Message

Dear Clarkson Families:

On behalf of the staff at Clarkson, I would like to wish all of our students and their families a wonderful summer break. It has been a busy year at Clarkson and this newsletter highlights the many activities and opportunities our Clarkson Chargers participated in during the second half of the school year.

For a small school, there are an extraordinary amount of clubs, teams and activities to get involved in. The dedication, innovation and grit of our Charger in academic, athletics and extra-curriculars is impressive and inspiring.

We are especially proud of our students for their dedication and involvement in our annual Cancer Drive in support of Camp Oochigeous. This year Clarkson S.S. raised a record breaking $50,303.43 for Camp Ooch. This is an amazing accomplishment for a school of just 750 students. Students, staff and Clarkson families know that this is a special and extraordinary accomplishment. We are proud of the way our Chargers give to others.

Thank you to our staff and students for their hard work. Best wishes.

Mrs. Zammit


Goodbyes and Welcome!

Staff Goodbyes and Welcome

This year Clarkson S.S. says goodbye to several of our most experienced and dedicated staff.

The following staff have retired this school year:

Karen Heneault- French Immersion Teacher

Annette Kurjanczyk- Department Head of Creative Arts and Drama Teacher

Donald McLaughlin- Co-operative Education Teacher

George Fotopoulos- Co-operative Education Teacher

Valerie Strickler- Teacher Librarian

Jayne Parkin- Office Manager Extraordinaire

We would like to welcome the following new members of the Clarkson S.S. staff:

Michelle Moore- Business Teacher

Angela Adekunle- Vice Principal

We would like to welcome back the following staff:

Angelo Kontos- Vice Principal

Goodbye and best wishes to the following staff who are leaving for new experiences or opportunities:

Tony Wang- Science, Math and Special Education Teacher

Altheia Grant- Vice Principal

Cathy Bruce- Vice Principal

Thank you and goodbye to the following teachers who were at Clarkson in short term teaching assignments in second semester:

Anthony Basciano- Civics/Careers and Physical Education Teacher

Meghan Connolly- Drama Teacher

Sidrah Thakar- Librarian

Rachelle Kerr- English Teacher

Nicole Hildred- ESLTeacher

Chalotte Mazur- French Immersion Teacher

Elaina Lampropoulos- Special Education & Science

Paul Filaber- French Immersion Teacher

Sapna Chhitta- Business and Family Studies

Fiona Schembri- Business Teacher

Ramandeep Singh- Global Studies Teacher and ESL

Drew Swackhamer- Technology Teacher

Ghada Chahrour- Science Teacher

Commencement 2019

Congratulations to the Class of 2019

We are so proud to see over 200 Clarkson Chargers receive their high school diplomas. This is the 50th Graduating Class of Clarkson Secondary.

We hope that when you look back on your years at Clarkson you remember the challenges and successes that you faced, and how these experiences made you stronger, wiser, more resilient …but most importantly how your experiences as a Charger made you humble and kind. We hope that you take these qualities with you wherever you go in life. Don’t be afraid to take new risks in your learning. Continue to grow in body, mind, and spirit. Always try to be the best person you can be and you will never disappoint yourself. Stay connected, remember your roots and visit us!

English & ESL

Genius Hour with Grade 12 English College Students

Over the course of the semester, Ms. Gonzales-Fadel’s ENG 4C0 class has been allotting one class a week towards their “Genius Hour” projects that count for part of their Culminating Task at the end of the year. What is Genius Hour? It’s a movement that allows students to explore their own passions and encourages creativity in the classroom. It provides students a choice in what they learn during a set period of time during school.

At the end of the semester, students’ voice and choice came to full fruition as the final projects were presented as a “Genius Hour” Galleria Walk in the Library Learning Commons. Within a small-group setting, students were able to discuss work that revolved around their interests, strengths, passions, and conclusions of their research and reflections.

CLK Student Ambassadors host International Students from China for 2 Weeks

In early May, 30+ students from the 271 Education Group of Schools in China came to visit Clarkson for two weeks. These students are going to be potential Clarkson Chargers come September 2020, and to make their transition a smoother one, as well as give them a taste of true Charger Spirit, students from all grades volunteered to be their “International Buddies”. Our students truly embraced their role as International Student Ambassadors, and took their new international friends under their wings by giving them the opportunity to shadow their morning classes and celebrate their arrival and send-off. Our future International Chargers were so grateful for the experience, and were able to meet new friends and make new memories in those two weeks.

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English 3U3

Mrs. Fryer’s English 3U3 class had fun exploring dramatic performances through the play, “The Melville Boys”. In addition to being introduced to a different fiction genre, these senior ELLs learned important aspects of staging a performance such as blocking and stage positions, voice projection, inflection, rate, pitch, pronunciation and collaboration!


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Blocking the scene!

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Chillin' on set!

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Computer Science & Math

Computer Science

This semester our grade 10 and grade 11 computer science classes have created a variety of autonomous robots to compete in different events. One challenge had them creating Sumo robots that were designed to push the others out of the ring. Another was a forklift challenge to lift and stack blocks taller than the robot themselves. With autonomous cars around the corner, these students are in a great position to build and code the robots of the future. The following are a few examples of some of their creations:

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There is nothing like games to bring people together. The grade 12 Data Management class was given the task of creating unique games of chance. The class used cards, spinners, dice and even a magic eight ball. Poseidon’s Gambler, The Sunflower Spinner and Tricky Colour Crafty Face were among the new games to be showcased. Students calculated theoretical and experimental probabilities, expected values and graphed their probability distributions. We enjoyed having several classes come and try their hands at our new games.

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Science & Technology

Engineering Idol

Our school competed once again at this year's Engineering Idol, thanks to the support of Mr. Wang. He guided a team of Grade 10 and 12 students to design and prototype what automated transportation could be like in the future. Although the team had a solid design plan and presentation, the prototype was not as cooperative as it could be at the competition. It was a tremendous learning experience for the students, and we look forward to our students competing again next year.

Avogadro Chemistry Competition

Many thanks to Mr. Uttamsingh for arranging the Avogadro Chemistry Competition again this year! We had over a dozen students compete from Clarkson.


Many thanks to Mr. Uttamsingh and our school's EcoTeam for getting Clarkson Bronze certified again as an EcoSchool. Students were able to present their future ideas at a staff meeting and we are looking forward to improve to a Silver rating for next year!

Learning through Inquiry

Throughout the semester, our science teachers have been working on improving learning experiences for students. Mr. Miller has been actively incorporating the use of Smart Carts, which are devices with various force sensors that can have data recorded and tracked on our Chromebooks. He's also been using software simulations from Interactive Physics to give students a different perspective on the concepts learned in our physics courses. Our Grade 9 classes continue to use Eco Jars for students to simulate the impacts of various chemical substances on soil, grass, and pond water. Other inquiry summatives included doing a corrosion study on metals and seeing how much sugar can actually be extracted from raw sugarcane. ​Our Grade 11 Biology classes continue to do classic tasks such as measuring their lung capacity through using spirometers, and dissections in class.

Clarkson 50th Anniversary

Many thanks to Ms. Slavinski for all her work during the school's 50th anniversary! She and her Communication Technology students were responsible for many pieces of art, displays, and slideshows that were seen during the celebration.

Languages & Library

From the Library Learning Commons (LLC)

It’s been a very exciting semester in Clarkson’s Library Learning Commons (LLC). In preparation for Clarkson’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, our library received a facelift which included new flooring, a new whiteboard, and a fresh coat of paint! And, although the LLC space looks a little bare at the moment, rest assured, the new shelving that will house our book collection is on the way. We anticipate that all of our print resources will be moved back into the LLC in time for when classes resume in the September (and we’ll unpack over 75 boxes of books!). In the meantime, you can see the work in progress in the photos below.

In addition to the physical space, Clarkson’s LLC continues to remain committed to providing resources and programming to support the diverse needs of our student population. We have expanded the collection Chromebooks available this semester, adding eight additional devices for individual student sign out (bringing the total number to 58), and adding four devices to our classroom set of Chromebooks on Wheels (known as the COW) to service individual classes. Also, LLC staff liaised with key vendors at Peel’s bi-annual vendor display to purchase print resources to support curriculum as well as student and teacher requests. Although they won’t be in circulation until the fall, we have added over 100 new books to our overall collection. We also continued to deliver valuable workshops throughout the semester, covering topics such as MLA and APA citations, plagiarism, note-taking, and more.

Stand by for more exciting changes and additions coming to our Library Learning Commons in the fall, as we continue to evolve both the physical and virtual LLC to engage and empower Clarkson’s modern learners. Follow us on Twitter @CLKlibrary to stay in the know with Clarkson’s LLC happenings!

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Théâtre Français - Le Bibliothécaire

On April 26th, our Grade French Immersion students attended the Théâtre Français de Toronto’s production of Le Bibliothécaire! This one-man show kept us entertained and laughing en français! Students enjoyed an authentic francophone cultural experience first hand!

PC Cooking Class

On April 17th students in our Grade 10 French Immersion class as well as our Grade 11 and 12 Core French students attended a cooking and nutrition class en français at the PC Milton Cooking School. What a fun and delicious way to learn about healthy food choices en français, cook and eat! Délicieux!

Medieval Times

On May 29th the Grade 11 French Immersion class studying History of Ancient Civilisations had an educational and entertaining outing to Medieval Times! Fun was had by all cheering on the Blue Knight and eating with our hands all while immersed in the medieval ages! What a great hands-on way to introduce our Medieval Unit of study!

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Grade 12 French Immersion Play

The grade 12 students in Ms. Twizere French Immersion class wrapped up their production of "Les Livres du Destin" by Luc Boulanger. They have been preparing for this since the beginning of this semester. Countless hours were spent in the theatre working very hard memorizing lines, co-ordinating scene changes, props, lighting and sound. The end product was funny, heart-warming, and a great success all around! Students from 5 different language classes in the school came to watch. It was remarkable to see how they worked through problems, interruptions, and some last minute glitches to produce such a great piece of theatre. Bravo!!

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Our Spanish students once again had their fiesta where they continued to learned how to make authentic Hispanic foods while working together in our amazing family studies kitchens. Over the years we've created many dialogues, made crafts like piñatas and maracas and listened to lots of music to advance speaking and listening skills. Buena suerte y gracias for three phenomenal years.

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Core French

To mark International Day of Francophonie, our grade 9 French core classes made homemade gaufres served with many fresh toppings. Délicieux!

Concours d’art Oratoire

Congratulations to our very own Clarkson students in both Core French and French Immersion programs for representing our school at the Peel Regional - Concours d’art oratoire on March 28th. The new format this year proved to be challenging as it was impromptu! Our students showed courage, and their excellent French language communication skills. We were very proud of all your hard work in preparing for this competition! Felicitations Aya Mohamed, Sardia Sarker, Sophia Qureshi, Monika Ninova, and Hudson Boisvert.

Aya, Sofia and Hudson went on to represent the Peel District School Board in their respective categories at the Provincial Competition held at Glendon Campus of York University on May 4th. Our students represented Clarkson SS and Peel District School Board at their very best at the Provincials! Un grand merci pour tous vos efforts!

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French Senior Scholars

Senior French Immersion students have been busy helping students improve their written and oral communication skills in French this year! Merci! Thank-you to the the French Senior Scholars for your time, patience and dedication! These students are available every Tuesday and Thursday in room 221. IF you are interested in becoming a French Senior Scholar for 2019-2020 school year please speak to eMme Urbano in room 205 or the Language’s Office.

The grade 12 students in Ms. Twizere French Immersion class wrapped up their production of "Les Livres du Destin" by Luc Boulanger. They have been preparing for this since the beginning of this semester. Countless hours were spent in the theatre working very hard memorizing lines, co-ordinating scene changes, props, lighting and sound. The end product was funny, heart-warming, and a great success all around! Students from 5 different language classes in the school came to watch. It was remarkable to see how they worked through problems, interruptions, and some last minute glitches to produce such a great piece of theatre. Bravo!!

Extra - Curriculars

Project Milk Bag

This tireless group has volunteered 150 hours of their lunch time this year. They cut up milk bags and prepare them to be weaved into sleeping mats. These mats are waterproof and bug resistant. Our volunteers are full of smiles but they take their responsibilities very seriously.

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ME to WE Charity

It's eCLK'S seventh year running this club of do gooders who bake for change, hold coin drives and host yearly food drives, in addition to staying silent so others can be heard and also standing together for reconciliation. We are super proud of our executive leaders, Sally, Gillian and Monika who have been a part of ME to WE since their junior year. To all of our members, muchas gracias for your ongoing commitment to helping others.

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TEDEd Club

Clarkson’s first ever TedEd Club has been meeting every Thursday at 11:00 in room 213. Since the club started, members have presented short talks to the group on a wide range of topics. Some of the talks have been on earliest memories; leaving childhood; how reading a book a month changed me; and, impromptu talks on randomly chosen topics. We discuss everything from the small issues (What do you like better: lakes or oceans?), to some big ones (women’s rights). We also watch fun videos (Vegans versus meat eaters; the need for college or university) and discuss. We hope to have a big school event next year.

Cheers to Another Season of Toastmasters!

This is our third consecutive year for Clarkson’s Toastmasters Youth Leadership Program, and this has been our biggest group yet! Under the supervision of Mr. Takhar and Ms. Gonzales-Fadel, 20 students from all grades had the opportunity to work on their public speaking skills - from developing their confidence to knowing how to write and do impromptu speeches - just over the course of 8 weeks, regularly meeting Tuesdays after school. It has been a pleasure to work with Nancy Parkhill and Mark Hayes this semester, who are official Toastmasters dignitaries, and who have also been great mentors to our students. It was amazing to see the progression of each and every student and watch how they’ve all become more confident in presenting their ideas to an audience.

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Global Studies - Social Sciences, Business, Civics & Careers

Queen's Park / University of Toronto Field Trip - Anthony Basciano

This past April, 3 CHV2O Civics classes hopped on a bus and travelled to downtown Toronto for a field trip to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario (aka Queens Park). Once arriving we were given a grand tour of the beautiful building and learned about the rich history and tradition that lies within. One of the tours was even completed in French in order to accommodate Mme. Heneault’s French class. When the tour concluded we were introduced to our very own MPP of Mississauga- Lakeshore Rudy Cuzzetto. After some handshakes, photographs, and introductions, we were afforded a short question period with MPP Cuzzetto. Once this was complete we made our way to the Legislative Chamber, took seats in the public gallery, and observed a portion of Question Period. During Question Period we watched MPPs of the Opposition ask the Premier and Cabinet Ministers questions about government policy and current issues. Premier Doug Ford was in attendance which made Question Period all the more interesting. Question Period got quite intense with heated exchanges from both the Opposition as well as the Ontario government which made for a thoroughly entertaining as well as rich learning experience. All in all it was a fantastic visit.

When we were all done at Queen’s Park we hopped on our bus and took a short ride down the road to the University of Toronto St. George Campus. In 2 weeks’ time our CHV2O Civics course would be finished and the same classes would then begin GLC2O Careers. In GLC2O students learn about different pathways they may choose to take once high school is complete. One of those pathways for many students is University so we took a guided tour of the St. George Campus and learned all about the school, it’s programs, facilities, residences, clubs, extra-curriculars, and what a common day for a University of Toronto student may look like. The tour was very informative and many students were quite excited about the prospects of living the life of a university student in the not too distant future.

When we got back on our bus for the final time to head back to Clarkson, students reflected on their great day. They spoke about how much they learned, how they were able to take part in new and fun experiences, and how they enjoyed a glimpse into their possible futures. Mission accomplished!

DECA in Florida - Fiona Schembri, OCT

For the first time since the inception of the Clarkson DECA Chapter, five students were selected to compete in ICDC (International Career Development Conference) in Florida from April 25 to May 2. At ICDC, there were a total of 21,000 students representing countries including USA, Canada, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, China, Spain and Pakistan.

The two Clarkson teams shortlisted at Provincials competition were competing in the Written category for Financial Literacy and Hotel and Tourism. In Florida, this meant two days of training at ICDC to create the best version of the report that would then be presented to the judges. Over the two days, advisors were tasked with reading and providing feedback on the written report. Our teams worked hard for two days perfecting their reports and visuals including powerpoint presentations and poster boards. When asked what was the highlight of the week, students shared that the Opening ceremony with the opportunity to trade pins from all over the world was extremely exciting and brought home the concept of barter.

The teams presented their reports amid stiff competition from the American teams that dominated the Written category. Ultimately, the teams were unsuccessful but grew from the experience and enjoyed competing and coming back with lessons learned and advice for the Clarkson Chapter to enhance future DECA groups. The ultimate goal is to ascend the podium and claim the glass trophy.

The Club - Graham Prosser

The idea for what would become The Club began in September 2018, when a small group of students were invited to give up time at lunch and after school to bring an old motorcycle back to life. The idea was to use the motorcycle as a tool to teach kids useful skills, create a positive connection to the school and demonstrate the value of responsibility, patience, and persistence during a difficult project. Like life, this journey has been filled with successes to be celebrated and challenges to be overcome. Everyone in The Club has faced (more than once) stripped bolts, broken parts difficult to replace, dropped tools on newly paint, electrical system mysteries, blown fuses, smashed fingers and scraped knuckles. Despite such adversity the Club members kept grinding away, using what resources that could find and solving problems as they arose.

The product that we fashioned is the result of hundreds of hours of planning and scouring for parts and mostly old-fashioned problem solving and hard work. The difficulties the Club has overcome have made for rich learning experiences and the successfully finished product all the more rewarding. If you want to see some of the process have a look at our IG account @clkclub. The goal is to raise as much money for Camp Ooch as possible. As a part of our 50th anniversary celebrations Clarkson Secondary School we’ll be auctioning off this bike. Every cent of the proceeds is being donated to Camp Ooch to support children battling Cancer!

Europe Trip 2019 - Ian Cowan

This past March 21 - 31 45 Clarkson students traveled to England, Belgium and France in order to learn more about Canada’s role in the two great world wars and impact of sacrifices made by young Canadians not much older than themselves. Highlights of the trip included two days in London, England where students saw history being made on the outskirts of the largest public rally in England’s history (the Brexit’s people’s protest), as well as Churchill’s war rooms and the Imperial War Museum. Students were treated to a tour of the city by one of London’s finest tour guides and had some free time in the Tower of London viewing the Crown jewels.

Students then journeyed by high speed train to Belgium where they participated in the Menin Gate ceremony and visited the Ghent Altarpiece. The Menin Gate ceremony commemorates the over 53000 commonwealth troops whose bodies were never found and has been held every night since the end of World War 1. Students visited Essex Farm where Lt. Colonel John McCrae wrote the iconic poem “In Flander’s Fields.” There were stops at the Vimy Ridge Memorial, the Juno Beach Centre and the seaside town of Dieppe site of the ill fated Canadian raid, held in preparation for the D-Day landings. There was even time to stock up on Belgian chocolate from Leonidas and eat their fill of the finest Belgian waffles in Europe! Finally the trip ended in Paris with visits to the Palace of Versailles, Notre Dame Cathedral and of course La tour Eiffel, by land and river boat!

This was the fifth Clarkson trip and chaperones Mr. Sembay and Mdm Loutrianakis are already looking forward to a return visit with a new group of students eager to see history first hand. One of the trip’s unanticipated moments of serendipity was a tour of Notre Dame, only weeks before it was to be consumed by fire. This tragedy serves as a reminder of the importance of travel and experiencing new places and events as they all too quickly be gone before you know it. Stayed tuned for announcements for the next trip!

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Creative Arts - Visual Arts, Drama, Music & Family Studies

Arts Night at Clarkson - May 16th 2019

“The world always seems brighter when you’ve made something that wasn’t there before”

--Neil Gaiman

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“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

--Maya Angelou

A Day in the Life of Drama at Clarkson

Have you ever wondered what REALLY goes on inside of a drama class at Clarkson??

Drama at Clarkson is a hands on and tactile learning environment that blends foundational dramatic forms with life skills! If you have ever looked into our classroom this semester, you would have seen students up on their feet, moving around the classroom and putting knowledge into physical form.

There is never a dull moment in drama!!

In both the grade 9 and grade 11/12 drama classes this semester, the first unit was dedicated to building a community within the classroom where trust, support and acceptance can be formed; this unit is essential in order for students to feel comfortable stepping outside of their comfort zone and trying something new. At the beginning of each class, a fun game is played to warm up the class, whether that be their physical bodies, their minds or to be introduced to a new concept.

"Drama is DOING and REFLECTING on the doing"

One of the most consistent parts of drama is peer and self reflection. After every performance, the audience gives feedback to the performers so they know what they did well and what they need to improve for the next assignment. If there is one thing I hope my students have taken away this semester, it is the importance of being a life long learner and always looking for ways to grow and improve; we are never done learning!

Regardless if students plan to pursue the arts after high school, drama is a great class to gain important life skills that can be taken with them into any classroom, job or relationship they have in the future. In drama, students learn how to work with new people, problem solve, think outside the box to express themselves in new ways, balance being a leader or being a supporter within a group, proper techniques for presenting and speaking in front of an audience and gain confidence in themselves while doing so.

So, for all of you out there wondering what this all looks like, click on the link below to watch "A Day in the Life of Drama at Clarkson"

-- Ms. Connolly, Drama Teacher

"You're only given a little spark of madness. You mustn't loose it"

--Robyn Williams

Visual Arts

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“Creativity takes courage” ~ Henri Matisse

It has been a busy semester in the Visual Arts department! The Grade 12 students in Mrs. Zottola’s art class welcomed Toronto Based Artist Mike Echlin to Clarkson for a one day workshop. Students learned about the Toronto art scene, Live Nation and the different ways to be involved in their art community. Students created self-portraits in the pop art style of Mike Echlin’s work.

Garbage cans are beginning to beautify the school as Ms. Zottola’s class uniquely painted them, creating their own beautification marks on the school. Be sure to keep an eye out for the new additions to our school!

Senior Art students attended a field trip to the Small Arms Inspection Building to visit the exhibition Public Volumes, and participate in arts and cultural programs. Students learned about how space can affect and influence members of different communities, and participated in a workshop on building their own installation that influences the way we move through space.

Mr. Zimmer’s grade 11 art class study the work of Chuck Close, and create portraits inspired by his work. The grade 11’s demonstrate their drawing skills when replicating their portraits from an image, and they use Close’s techniques when using stamps to add dimension to their portraits.

The grade 11 photography class learn about the different settings of the camera when exploring the school grounds and capturing images. The grade 12 visual design class learn about the elements and principles of design, and use these skills when designing their digital spreads.

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Paintings on display at the student run Art show

Grade 9

Culminating Work

Ms. Zottola gives her grade 9 students a starter activity every day to practice our drawing skills. Grade 9’s learn colour theory while working with watercolour and pastel, and create maze’s in Escher-like perspective.

Culminating Portraits in Pencil and Watercolour

Grade 10

A lot of colour, a keen eye, great artistic skills and enjoyment led to a great grade 11 art class this semester.

Grade 11

Grade 11 Culminating

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Grade 11 Photography and Grade 12 Yearbook

Tons of great photographs were taken and with the 50th Anniversary of the school this year, the theme of the yearbook was easy to come up with.

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Grade 11 Photography (Aperture Assignment)

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Grade 12 Yearbook’s 50th Anniversary Cover

Last but not least we had many students contribute to our art auction during Cancer Drive. Many thanks to all the students who created and donated and to the students who purchased these works. Here are a few pictures to show the dedication of the Chargers Art!

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What a spectacular way to end a spectacular season! CLK Arts Night 2019 was a smash success. For the first time in history, the entire Creative Arts Department came together to showcase the astounding talent in our school.

The Dance team kicked the night off with an energetic routine choreographed by Madame Mazur. A variety of solo performers played and sang to a packed house; even the teachers got in on the fun. The audience got a sneak peek at life behind the scenes with a great video from Ms. Connolly's Drama classes while the The Chargettes brought the house down with For Good and The Climb.

In addition to the best cookies ever from Family Studies, the highlight of the intermission was an art gallery of extraordinary works from Clarkson's finest visual artists.

Mrs. Zammit conducted the legendary Clarkson Concert Band, and we bid a sad farewell to an extremely talented graduating class. A big shout out to Miss Wong, Mr. Arthurs, Mr. Zimmer, Mrs. Zottola, Ms. Nadeau and Ms. Soczek for such an amazing team effort.​

CLK Arts Night

What a spectacular way to end a spectacular season! CLK Arts Night 2019 was a smash success. For the first time in history, the entire Creative Arts Department came together to showcase the astounding talent in our school.

The Dance team kicked the night off with an energetic routine choreographed by Madame Mazur. A variety of solo performers played and sang to a packed house; even the teachers got in on the fun. The audience got a sneak peek at life behind the scenes with a great video from Ms. Connolly's Drama classes while the The Chargettes brought the house down with For Good and The Climb.

In addition to the best cookies ever from Family Studies, the highlight of the intermission was an art gallery of extraordinary works from Clarkson's finest visual artists.

Mrs. Zammit conducted the legendary Clarkson Concert Band, and we bid a sad farewell to an extremely talented graduating class. A big shout out to Miss Wong, Mr. Arthurs, Mr. Zimmer, Mrs. Zottola, Ms. Nadeau and Ms. Soczek for such an amazing team effort.​

Physical Education & Co-op Education

Senior Badminton

The senior badminton team was fantastic this year. Some players went from beginner level to winning games in the ROPSSAA tournament. Congratulations to Jade Abreo for making it to the ROPSSAA championship tournament and winning a match against a strong opponent! Boy doubles performed well and won a number of matches. In mixed doubles, Joan Huang and Han Yan really took it to their opponents and both players improved tremendously over the season. Excellent badminton season team!

Ultimate Frisbee

This years Ultimate Frisbee Team finished the regular season with an impressive 8-0 record. Unfortunately, they eventually lost to Robert Hall in the playoffs. Thank you to all of the grade 12 students for their enthusiastic spirit and commitment over the years which helped build the Ultimate Frisbee Program here at Clarkson.

Girls Softball League

​After finishing in second place in ROPPSA'S tier 2 senior girls softball league, Clarkson's 2019 girls softball team competed in ROPPSA'S tier 1 senior girls softball league. Beating last years tier 1 champions David Suzuki in the semi finals to advance to the championship game, only to loose by 1 run and finish in second place. Outstanding season Congratulations Ladies!!!

Dragon Boat Team

This year the Clarkson Chargers formed their very first Dragon Boat team! The initiative was spearheaded by grade 12 students, Victoria Drybrough and Katherine Breen. Thirty student athletes competed at the annual Mississauga Dragon Boat Festival, bringing home hardware in the womens and mixed categories as well as Gold in the highschool championship race!

We hope to continue this winning tradition in years to come.

Senior Boys Cricket Team

The Senior Boys Cricket Team had a very successful season this Spring. We went 3-1 in the regular season and qualified for the playoffs for the 1st time in 7 years. We battled some injuries in the playoffs and suffered a tough loss but the team played hard and never gave up. Considering the team was so young with many grade 9 and 10 players the Chargers cricket team looks poised to build off this years achievements and have even more success next year. Go Chargers!

Co-op Education

The Co-op Department has had an amazing success in second semester!

Students can identify the skills, knowledge, and habits of mind required to ensure the health, safety, and well-being and explain how they apply to the co-operative education experience.

Some students have already received part-time job offers or will be receiving summer job offers from their co-op employers!

Congratulations to Dayra L and Brennan G who received the Co-op Awards at ommencement for demonstrating professionalism and competency at their workplace. They both received $50.

Congratulations to Jero D who received the OYAP Award of Excellence at commencement. Jero is a graduating student who participated as an OYAP participant, demonstrated effective performance at the co-op placement, demonstrated appropriate work habits and essential skills to be successful in the skilled trades and received positive feedback from the co-op employer. He received a certificate and $100 cheque.

Congratulations goes to Josh M who received the Peel District School Board's Spirit of Co-op Award (2 credit co-op). This award only has one recipient for the Spirit of Co-op Award (2 credit co-op) in the board! The criteria for this award is as follows:

  • Growth mindset & Resilience

  • Demonstrated improvement in Work Ethics (i.e. attendance, respect)

  • Overcoming challenges & demonstrated perseverance

  • Exceeding performance in the workplace

Josh received a certificate and a $150 cheque.

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Guidance, Special Ed., Credit Recovery, ILC. Student Success

The Student Services department has been busy all year trying our best to support students in any way possible. This includes team efforts to respond to the various needs of students around their timetables, difficulties managing workloads, successes and setbacks, and social-emotional demands. Our guidance team invited colleges and universities in to help our students plan for the years ahead, and this year we had a panel of colleges into our school to explain the dynamic world of college and the changing world of post secondary education. (insert link/image:

This year many of our department members took on additional school involvement initiatives that help to make Clarkson the warm and vibrant place that it is. This includes our engaging and supportive Link Crew program that unites senior school leaders with incoming grades 9s in a unique mentoring program. September will be our 3rd year running this incredible mentorship program that shows our new grade 9s how much their matter to the fabric of high school. Additionally some of our department played a significant role on this year’s Cancer Drive that saw record breaking numbers. What a truly awe-inspiring experience for all.

But aside from these things, the one thing our department works tirelessly at is supporting students and really trying everything we can to help them be successful. We know that they best way to do this is through building relationships with students and their families. Please encourage your child to reach out to any of us in Guidance, Special Education, Contact, or ILC if they need extra support in any way. And please continue to keep open lines of communication with your child as teenagers need it! Here are some great tips for talking to your kid about their day:

Cross-Curricular International Program

The 2019 year began with Lunar New Year celebrations. The Year of the Dog was brought in at Clarkson with an Asian dragon dance, crafts, music, and food for everyone in the cafeteria. It was a lunch hour full of energy, good food, and good cheer.

Throughout the semester, WOW Wednesdays continued the orientation for this year’s newcomer students. There were workshops on Visa Renewal, Health Insurance, and tips and suggestions on planning summer activities. These workshops are always informative, and a valuable resource, aiding our students in their continued orientation of Canada.

Late March, with warmer days brought the maple syrup season. A field trip to Bronte Creek Provincial Park allowed international students the experience of actively seeing maple syrup production, and allowed them to hear about it’s history in Canada. Making pancakes, and then smothering them in Canadian maple syrup was a highlight to end the day.

This year’s International Committee focussed activities on purposefully sharing and teaching their culture to local students. Along with making and eating dumplings at the Dumplings in December event, International students also taught a traditional Chinese sport, Jianzi, to interested Chargers. A competition of keeping the birdie/hacky sack-like object in the air with body parts made the lunch hour activity fun for all.

In addition, our established Language Partnership Program transitioned into Mandarin Mondays, where students could learn a new language in larger groups with their friends. What a success, as so many local students learned a new language informally with smiles and laughter.

Lastly, a visit from a school group from China’s 271 Education Group occurred in May. During a two week visit, local ambassador students were shadowed during their morning classes, with a welcome and goodbye party starting and ending the visit. Connections were created, culture, language and experience were exchanged, and friendships were made. We are looking forward to seeing our visitors from China again, as they return in September 2020 as Clarkson Chargers.

With 50 of our international students graduating this year, we celebrate their success of receiving high school diplomas in a second language - not an easy feat. We wish them all the best, as they pursue post secondary pathways in a wide range of areas. We will miss them, as they have become like family but remember, ‘Once a Charger, always a Charger!’

Cancer Drive

The phrase Cancer Drive has become nothing short of legendary in the halls of Clarkson

Secondary School. A chaotic, messy, fun-filled week of food, music, activities, and unforgettable fun with friends and peers, Cancer Drive is easily one of the highlights of the Clarkson school year. A massive fundraising event, all funds from Cancer Drive go to Camp Oochigeas, a camp for children suffering from cancer to escape their illness, that is run entirely on donations. Cancer Drive is run by a small school with a big heart, and the 2018-2019 event was no exception. This record-breaking year was louder and more exciting than ever, with a packed caf daily, and lineups of excited students waiting to participate in the day’s event never seeming to end. Now let’s recap what each day had to offer.

DAY ONE: We kicked things off with Halloween in April, challenging students to break out

their spookiest costumes, and join us in the caf for flip cup and juice pong. Students were also given the chance to play the mummy game, where they brought a “willing” friend up on stage, and raced with other teams to see who could create the fastest toilet paper mummy. This was an unexpected hit, and the perfect way to kick off what was looking to be an incredible week. Then in the afternoon we hosted our annual dodgeball buyout. Students, teachers, alumni, and even members of the Peel Police Department created teams of six and fought it out in a tournament-style race to the top, with some serious bragging rights on the line. Spectators flooded the stands and music blared as the games began, and teams got knocked out one by one. In the end, Football North’s team came out on top, with their strategic starting formations and pinpoint accuracy giving them an easy route to first place. As day one wrapped up, the gym was full of excited faces, knowing that things could only get better from there.

DAY TWO: Beach day! An undeniable favourite amongst Chargers, students got ready to hang

ten in their best summer gear. In the gym, we ran a classic: Hungry Hungry Hippos, where

partners teamed up to get as many balls into a net as possible while being pushed on a scooter board, and with a laundry basket as their only tool. While this event is easily a classic, in the caf, the real party was just getting started. Garbage bags were laid out, puke buckets were at the ready, and tables were stacked with - you guessed it - chocolate milk. The milk chug is nothing short of legendary. Every year fifty litres of chocolate milk is bought, and every year that milk is sold out. This isn’t an event for the faint of heart though, as students and teachers faced off in a stomach-lurching race to see who can chug a litre of chocolate milk the fastest. This year, record holder Mr.Camarena stepped up his game, shattering his own previous record by chugging a full litre of milk in a gut-busting 10.87 seconds! This is undoubtedly one of our messier days, but students are always more than happy to get a bit of a stomach ache for the kids.

DAY THREE: Today is the big day! The golden years were resurrected as students broke out their bell bottoms and high tops for Do It for the Decade, a new event for the 2018-2019 school year. In this event students competed in a silent auction to perform as their favourite decade. Winners of this auction were given the opportunity to compete with a song, dance, lipsync, or all of the above, fighting to obtain the coveted title of Cancer Drive VIP. This position gives the early access to food, first go at the annual mud run, and a special shoutout during Friday’s wrap-up. It’s a title that can’t be beat. This event had the whole school on their feet, with performances of Madonna, the Backstreet Boys, and Green Day being just a few of the highlights. In the end, the crown went to Philip, Thilaksan, Amir, and Malhar with their

unforgettable rendition of “Soulja Boy”. You guys rocked the house, and more than earned your title of Cancer Drive VIPs! Do It for the Decade blew us away with its success, with performances even going into third period by popular demand, shoutout to Ali Sheikh and Sabrina Ali for organizing this event!

DAY FOUR: Am I seeing double? Or is it twin day! Thursday gave students the opportunity to show off their matching looks, and bid on one of a kind art pieces in the art auction. This event allows for students and alumni to donate their artwork to be auctioned off, with students emptying their wallets to get their hands on each unique piece. Completing his four-year series, resident artist Ali Sheikh auctioned off a piece of Tupac Shakur, that after an intense bidding war, sold for an incredible $800! After the art auction came to an end, students rushed to change for Clarkson Athletic Association's eagerly awaited Mud Run, a buyout that allows student to get down, dirty, and do it for the kids. CAA presidents Samantha Kolesnik and Sydney Hubbard overcame countless challenges with their committee, and were able to deliver a record breaking year, with more students buying out to participate than ever before! Braving the bitter April cold, students climbed, crawled, and ran through the muck, joining in the parking lot afterwards for a water balloon fight orchestrated by Mr. Arduini’s homeroom class. Way to go Chargers!

DAY FIVE: Break out that black and yellow, it’s Charger spirit day! Students came together in all of their Clarkson swag for tricycle races, alumni day, and the always bittersweet wrap-up assembly. We started with the tricycle races at lunch. Students face off in a ridiculous manner, ripping around the cafeteria on tiny tricycles to send kids to camp. This event is always a hit, with senior student Fraser May defending his title as the undefeated tricycle race champion. Now to see if he comes back next year to defend his spot as an alumni? In the afternoon, students were called out of class for the wrap-up assembly, where brave students who have been fundraising for weeks cut their hair, shave their heads, or pie their teachers on stage in front of the entire school. This last bit of fundraising also gave students the chance to wax their friend’s legs, so look out for some patchy shins as we move into the warmer weather! Wrap-up is of course bittersweet, as it means that Cancer Drive is drawing to a close, but there are also few things more heartwarming as seeing a school come together in the way that Clarkson does during this week. It’s messy, stressful, and insane, but it’s all worth it to these students. As Cancer Drive came to a close, exec members were able to take a short breath, but not for long, as just a month later it was time for the big reveal…$50,303.43! That’s right, a new Cancer Drive record! A special shoutout goes out to the Cancer Drive Executive: Allison Hudson, Nick Foss, Ali Sheikh, Sabrina Ali, Hala Nayef, Paul Chung, Azaan Rabbani, Sadia Sarker, Monika Ninova, Linh Nguyen, Jaspreet Notta, and Clare Wu. We also couldn’t have done it without the support of incredible Clarkson staff members Mr. Sembay, Ms. Haddad, Ms. Garlock, and Mr. Kinne. Finally, thank you Chargers. You did it for the kids, and funded 25.15 weeks of camp! Amazing work!

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50th Anniversary

A special thanks to the staff and students who participating in planning and running our 50th Anniversary Celebrations. The event was a huge success with over 12000 attending.
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  • If your home address will be changing during the summer, please notify the office staff at your child’s school prior to June 28. Late requests will not be reflected in the planned bus routes to commence in September and may result in transportation services not being available for your child during the first weeks of school. Parents will be responsible for their children getting to and from school until appropriate transportation service is arranged.

    The distance criteria for transportation eligibility must be more than: 1.0 kilometer Kindergarten and Grade 1

    1.6 kilometers for Grades 2 – 4

    2.0 kilometers for Grades 5 – 8

    3.8 kilometers for Grades 9 – 12

    If your child is moving to grade 2, grade 5, or grade 9 in the 2019-2020 school year, their eligibility status for transportation may be changing. Eligibility information can be accessed at the website noted below.

    Parents who receive letters in June of this year indicating that the transportation eligibility status for their children is being revised due to eligibility reassessment are reminded that this change will occur effective September 3, 2019.

  • All transported kindergarten and grade 1 students are required to be met by a parent/caregiver when disembarking from their bus on their return trip from school.

  • Courtesy transportation, which is assignment of ineligible students to available, empty seats on buses, will not be initiated prior to October 1. No exceptions.

  • Please be aware that during September and early October, STOPR priorities are eligible students requiring transportation service, bus overloads, and route timing adjustments.

  • Requests for additional or adjusted bus stop locations, route adjustments, and challenges to eligibility status will not be addressed until late October.

  • Please be patient. STOPR provides transportation services for approximately 65,000 students to 350 schools on 1,400 buses. This is accomplished with an operations staff of 15. Every effort is made to complete required adjustments as quickly as possible, but there are limitations to the volume of changes which can be appropriately communicated and implemented each week.

Contacting STOPR - The STOPR offices are open during the summer months (July, August)

Internet: This website provides up to date delay and inclement weather cancellation information in addition to policy, procedures and frequently asked questions This website allows parents to access information specific to “what school do I attend” and “am I eligible for transportation”. This site also provides parents access to specific bus stop location and pick up and drop off times for their children if eligible for transportation

Telephone: STOPR: Phone: 905 890-6000

Toll free: 1-800 668-1140