Pope Francis Centre

Within the Niagara Catholic District School Board student potential is explored and celebrated. Through the Pope Francis Catholic Secondary School, students are provided an alternative-school connected opportunity to learn, with individually designed programs, experiences and support to attain academic goals.

The Pope Francis Centre provides students who may struggle with learning in a traditional school setting, a supported learning environment where they can work on independently selected programming/ Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL), credits and receive individualized supports as required.

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Pope Francis Classroom (Elementary & Secondary)

The Pope Francis Centre Classrooms are inviting spaces that provide an alternative classroom setting to allow students who are experiencing attendance and learning difficulties an opportunity to attain credits with some flexibility in scheduling, in accommodating the needs of each student. The Pope Francis Centre Classrooms provide students with both Elementary and Secondary academics and supports to ensure success.

Re-engagement Program

The Re-engagement Program allows individuals 18 years and older, who are looking to attain their Ontario Secondary Diploma an opportunity to be supported through an alternative education setting. The program allows for flexibility, as students work independently on courses and meet weekly to dialogue and ensure success as they are supported. The flexibility of the Re-engagement Program allows students to attain employment and work at their own pace and schedule in completing credits.

Supervised Alternative Learning

Supervised Alternative Learning Plan (SALP) is for students who are at risk of not graduating to continue their education in an alternative manner. Students who are not attending school regularly are encouraged to apply to a SALP along with parental/guardian support. The goal of the SALP is to re-engage learning and to work towards achieving a secondary school diploma.

Young Parent Support

The Young Parent Support Program has been established to provide a safe nurturing environment for young parent(s) who may be experiencing challenges with completing secondary school credits within a traditional school setting. The Parent Support Program provides an environment conducive to learning and achieving credits, while allowing the opportunity of bringing their child to school in the adjacent daycare facility.

Indigenous Education

The Niagara Catholic District School Board is committed to supporting First Nation, Métis, and Inuit students by:

  1. developing effective strategies and learning opportunities that are responsive, flexible, and accessible to improve student achievement and well-being,
  2. closing the gap in student achievement in the areas of literacy and numeracy, and
  3. increasing retention and Indigenous student graduation rates to support the pursuit of postsecondary education or training and/or to enter the workforce.

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Saint Kateri Tekakwitha Elementary & Secondary School

Niagara Catholic, under the Ontario’s First Nations, Métis, and Inuit (FNMI) Education Policy Framework, encourages all Indigenous students to self-identify as part of a voluntary process, to support Indigenous students through our specialized classrooms that offer:

  • Accessing culturally relevant materials and programs in schools, allowing Indigenous students to see themselves reflected in the learning materials.
  • Gathering academic information to support the unique learning needs of Indigenous students within our schools.
  • Accessing cultural events offered to Indigenous students throughout the school year.
  • Hosting special events at our schools, allowing our Indigenous students to share their unique cultural identity with non-Indigenous students.
  • Sharing information about career and educational funding opportunities that are specific to Indigenous student.

School-College-Work Initiative

The School-College-Work Initiative is a cooperative effort with a mandate to assist in creating a seamless transition for students from secondary school to college. In addition to a wide array of learning and awareness opportunities for students, teachers, parents and the broader community, projects have been developed to provide Dual Credit programs for secondary students through a partnership between Niagara Catholic secondary schools and Niagara College. Dual Credit programs allow students, while they are still in secondary school, to take college courses that count towards their Ontario Secondary School Diploma and a college certificate, diploma or degree.

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Dual Credit Program

The Dual Credit Program are Ministry-approved programs that allow students, while they are still in secondary school, to take college courses that count towards an Ontario Secondary Diploma AND College certificate, diploma, degree or certification. The Dual Credit Program is a great way to allow the potential re-engagement of students who are at risk of not graduating, to earn their diploma and to transition to independent learners for post secondary education, while still having high school supports, in a college environment.

The Niagara LINK program is designed for students who are not currently attending secondary school or who are at risk of leaving school without achieving their diploma. Niagara LINK allows students to work towards earning secondary school courses while at the same time earning one Niagara College Dual Credit. (A Dual Credit counts both as a secondary school credit AND a College general elective credit) The program provides an alternative and more mature environment that provides students with a glimpse of “life after high school.” It is the perfect transition program from high school to post-secondary, while still being supported.

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program

OYAP is a School to Work program that opens the door for secondary students to explore and work in apprenticeship occupations starting in Grade 11 or Grade 12 through the Cooperative Education program. An OYAP student earns cooperative education credits for work experience in an apprenticeship occupation. Students have an opportunity to become registered apprentices and work towards becoming certified journeypersons in a skilled trade while completing their secondary school diplomas. The program provides supports for students, with the opportunity to start training in a skilled trade while completing the requirements for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

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Cooperative Education

Cooperative Education is a Ministry approved program where students earn secondary school credits while completing a work placement in the community.

The program consists of a co-op course monitored by a Cooperative Education Teacher, a related curriculum course in any subject and a work placement.

Co-op programs are for secondary students who are heading for apprenticeship, college, university or the workplace and allows students to experience a specific work environment as a potential career option.

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Technological Education

Niagara Catholic’s secondary school technological education is designed to build upon the foundation of knowledge and skills provided by the elementary science and technology curriculum.

The fundamental purpose of Niagara Catholic’s technological education program is to provide students with knowledge, skills, and attitudes that will enhance their ability to achieve success in school, the workplace, postsecondary education or training, and daily life.

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Niagara Launch Centre

Niagara Catholic’s vision is to fuel student interest and passion through exciting and engaging education that leads to valuable skill development and career prosperity.

At the Niagara Launch Centre innovative and creative education is provided for students in all pathways. The Niagara Launch Centre is a learning experience that provides community connected learning that is linked through industry partnerships and realistic work and career opportunities.

  • Communications Technology
  • Computer Technology
  • Construction Technology
  • Green Industries
  • Hairstyling and Aesthetics
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Manufacturing Technology
  • Technological Design
  • Transportation Technology

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)

The Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) program, offers province-wide specialized programs in specific Ministry-identified sectors to support the success of all students. Ontario secondary schools offer expanded programs to help meet students’ individual learning styles and interests. SHSM programs help to better engage students in learning as the program offers experiential learning opportunities such as, job-shadowing, work experience and cooperative education, to better prepare a student for graduation and transition into post-secondary studies and the workplace.

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How to Register

For further information or to register for a program, please click on the links provided for contacts.

Pope Francis Centre
Principal John Belcastro
E-mail: john.belcastro@ncdsb.com

NCDSB Website