Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a great holiday season.
A new year joke for you: Why did everyone want January 1, 2021 to come? Because then we can finally say hindsight is really 2020!
Before the Christmas break, the 2020 MSS graduation was held virtually on December 17. An in-person ceremony could not be held due to the pandemic, but organizers made sure that didn’t stop them. Messages of congratulations were given to the graduates by vice principal Ms. Noble McCann; Rainbow District School Board (RDSB) First Nations Trustee Linda Debassige; RDSB Manitoulin Trustee Margaret Stringer; Principal Jamie Mohamed; and former vice principal Denis Lafleur. Mackenzie Cortes was named the valedictorian for the class of 2020. She began her speech to her fellow graduates with lyrics to the song ‘Graduating Without Graduation’ that she wrote during the first lockdown. It was a wonderful speech, Mackenzie. Congratulations to all 2020 graduates!
Similar to graduation, the annual 51st Awards Night could not be held in-person this year; however, over $50,000 was awarded to graduates by mail this year. A few highlights from this year’s awards night include: 20 Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) certificates were awarded to students who completed the ministry requirements for either the Arts and Culture SHSM or Agriculture SHSM, and 24 students were awarded with Ontario scholars certificates for receiving an average of 80 percent or higher in their top six 4U/4M/4C/4O courses. The Manitoulin Secondary School staff bursary went to John Tolsma. The Manitoulin Secondary School Students’ Council Scholarship went to Connor Phillips. The Manitoulin Secondary School Three Fires Confederacy Scholarship went to Pierre Debassige. The Principal’s Award for Student Excellence went to Mackenzie Cortes. The Joan Mantle Music Trust Bursary went to Lily Hore. The Rainbow District School Board Student Senate Bursary went to Rachel Sheppard. Current and former students were also recognized for their achievements. Plaques were presented to the top academic students in their respective grades for the 2019-2020 school year: Grade 9, Jocelyn Kuntsi; Grade 10, Rachael Orford; Grade 11, Rachel Deforge; Grade 12, Rachel Sheppard. The Manitoulin Expositor Bursaries were awarded to deserving students in each grade who made an outstanding transition from their previous grade: Grade 9, Aiden Negannegijig; Grade 10, Emerson Brewer-Case; Grade 11, Todd Gordon; Grade 12, Kyle Greenman. Thank you so much to all businesses, organizations, and individuals who donated bursaries that will assist former MSS students in their post-secondary endeavors.
Due to the current provincial lockdown, MSS students will not be returning to the classroom until the scheduled reopening date of Monday, January 11. Virtual instruction began on Tuesday, January 5; classes are following their regular schedules remotely all week. Monday, January 4 was used to set-up and ensure that students could access the appropriate virtual platforms and verify email addresses. Students who do not have access to the internet will or have received paper based assignments for the week.
It is that time of year again. We are less than a month away from the end of the semester, which means culminating projects and assignments are coming soon. Grade 9 Math EQAO assessments could begin as early as Monday, January 11.
Joke of the week: What is a New Year’s resolution? Something that goes in one year and out the other!
Upcoming events include Grade 9 EQAO math assessment and the virtual information night on Thursday, February 18.
Wishing everyone a safe and healthy 2021!
Until next time, “Dream and Believe, Learn and Achieve!”