March 8 / 2019


March 1 we hosted our inaugural ICE symposium on Canada North: Challenges and Opportunities. The event was kicked off by the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, who delivered an honest and difficult look at the complexities of the issues faced by Canada's North. Following her remarks, a panel of experts continued the discussion. We were lucky to have Susan Vella (Senior Litigation Counsel at Rochon Genova LLP), Carol Devine (humanitarian, researcher and writer), William Huffman (art curator and programme coordinator with Dorset Fine Arts) and Talitha Tolle (Indigenous activist) continue to explore issues of climate and health, art and the economy, sexual abuse, cultural assimilation and also other questions of infrastructure.  Dr. Sherrill Grace (professor emerita at UBC) rounded out the discussion with an integrated look at how the North relates to our Canadian identity. Students then travelled to breakout groups where they were able to continue independent research into various aspects of the Canadian North. We are proud of our students for how sensitively and maturely they can explore these complex issues as they dive deep into the layers of the Canadian identity.


Susan Vella, (parent) Senior Litigation Counsel and Practice Group Leader of the Sexual and Institutional Abuse and Aboriginal Rights Groups; Rochon Genova LLP. Susan Vella is recognized as one of Canada's foremost practitioners in the areas of civil sexual assault, institutional abuse, civil litigation and multi-victim lawsuits. On June 11th, 2008 Susan received The Advocates' Society Award of Justice. The Award of Justice honours advocates who exemplify the finest traditions of advocacy in representing members in society whose cause may be politically or socially unpopular or against the mainstream. In the September 2003 issue of L'Expert™ magazine and in the National Post, Financial Post section that same year, Susan Vella was named as "one of the 15 top Canadian women lawyers to watch". Full bio here

Carol Devine (parent) Carol Devine is humanitarian and researcher with Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Canada where she leads a project on climate, environment and health. Carol has worked with MSF in Rwanda, East Timor, Peru and South Sudan. As a member of See Change Initiative, Carol joined a small exploratory team to visit two Nunavut communities facing a health crises in the spring of 2018 to better understand the challenges and opportunities and to support community solutions. She's a conceptual artist and social scientist who's led and participated in ocean pollution initiatives in the UK, Arctic and Antarctic. Carol was a 2016 Fellow with Ecologic Institute's Arctic Summer College and has been a speaker at The Arctic Summit, TEDxMontrealWomen, the Samuel Centre for Social Connectedness and at the American Geophysical Union on plastic pollution, climate change and health. Her sciart from an Arctic cleanup expedition in Svalbard, Aquamess, is exhibited at the Canada Science and Technology Museum and has been in a group exhibit at the New York Hall of Science and featured with the Photographic Museum of Humanity. She’s a member of the Society of Women Geographers, The Explorer’s Club, the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research's Humanities and Social Sciences Expert Group.

Talitha Tolle Talitha became an Indigenous Leadership Facilitator and Motivational Speaker in 2013 and is now the Associate Director of Global Program Innovation and Indigenous Programs. She has over 7 years of experience as a motivational speaker, program developer, community mobilizer and leadership facilitator on Indigenous awareness. Talitha has spent the last five years travelling across Canada as a Tour Speaker for the WE Stand Together Campaign. A campaign designed to strengthen ties between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians through learning and dialogue.

William Huffman ]Huffman is an arts administrator, curator, educator and writer with a history of extensive involvement on both local and international cultural fronts. He is currently responsible for national and international initiatives for the West Baffin Eskimo Cooperative Toronto and Cape Dorset operations. Immediately prior to this position, Huffman was Acting Executive Director for Inuit Art Foundation and Associate Publisher of Inuit Art Quarterly.

Huffman has worked with several visual arts organizations such as Blackwood Gallery, Arts Toronto, The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, A Space Gallery, Canadian Art Magazine,  Canadian Art Foundation and Art Gallery of Sudbury. Most recently, he was Associate Director of Toronto Arts Council and Toronto Arts Foundation – a post he held for more than a decade. During that time, Huffman participated in a unique secondment as Coordinator of the Audience and Market Development Office at Canada Council for the Arts in Ottawa.

He served on the capital campaign committee for the Kenojuak Cultural Centre in Cape Dorset and is also a member of the organization’s Advisory Committee. He is a past Board member of Mercer Union Centre for Contemporary Art, Ontario Cultural Human Resources Council, Canadian Artists Representation, Alliance Française de Toronto and Parkdale Liberty Economic Development Corporation. He serves as a member of the Curriculum Advisory Committee for Art & Art History, a joint program between Sheridan College and University of Toronto and in 1998, Huffman created the program’s annualWilliam Huffman Award for Excellence in Studio Practice. He currently holds teaching positions with University of Toronto and Toronto School of Art and is a regular on-air, national arts correspondent with CTV News Channel.


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We will be hosting our first International Week on Monday, April 15th to Thursday, April 18th. There will be a Parade of Nations in the Junior School and a Casual Day in the Middle and Senior School where students are invited to wear the traditional dress or flag colours of their home country or their family’s country of origin. Take advantage of your March break trips to different countries to assemble clothing, jewelry, accessories, flags or cultural items so that we are prepared for this week of celebration.





Our next sessions for the Athlete Institute will be for High Performance basketball  led by NBA and International Shooting/Skills Development Coach, David Nurse. This is a great opportunity to come and learn and develop your basketball skills.If you partake in The York Basketball community you should sign up for at least 1 of these sessions that are being offered. Sessions are scheduled for Friday, March 29th to Sunday March 31st. You can sign up using the google form by clicking here.


We have been getting some feedback from the community that there has been an erosion of process at pick up and drop off. For the safety of the children we ask those who are involved with (vehicular) pick-up and drop off re-familiarize themselves with the process. Additionally, two of our staff are on hand to provide added safety and flow at these peak times. We ask that you follow their guidance and direction.

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If you are dropping off your child in the morning, you must proceed to the laneway south of 1320 Yonge Street.This is a one-way lane hat conveniently exits onto Woodlawn Avenue. If you require short-stay parking, the garage will be open from 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM. For safety purposes, you will be required to escort your child to the school door. Please note that the entrance and exit from the parking garage is a one-way lane, so please be courteous to other drivers. The right turn out of the garage is tight for large vehicles, so please take care with this turn. The York School will have staff members stationed at the garage entrance to help aid the flow of traffic and ensure student safety.The laneway door of the school will be open from 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM; otherwise students must enter through the front door.

We recommend that students take the TTC (we are conveniently located between St. Clair and Summerhill stations), cycle, or arrange drop-off and pick-up a few blocks from the school. If you still wish to pick-up, please proceed to the visitor parking and arrange to meet your child there. The parking garage will be open for pick-up between 3:15 PM - 4:0 PM. Please note there are only 16 spaces. As an idle free zone, we ask that you turn off the car for your health and for those of others.


Please make sure to check The York School’s full school calendar regularly for updates, locations and times.  

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