The Fraser Institute

The Fraser Institute

March 24, 2010 07:00 ET

The Fraser Institute: Ontario Schools Honoured for Academic Performance and Improvement at Annual Weston Awards

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 24, 2010) - Seventy-nine schools from across Ontario were recognized for ongoing academic improvement and achievement at the annual Garfield Weston Awards for Excellence in Education in Toronto Tuesday.

Awards were presented in three categories, each reflecting different aspects of academic success. Improvement in Academics recognizes elementary schools that have experienced the fastest, most consistent improvement in their academic performance over the past five years. Determination in Academic Achievement recognizes the top-performing elementary schools where the average parental income at the school is among the bottom 25 per cent of the province. Overall Academic Achievement recognizes the schools with the top provincewide rankings for academic performance.

An all-time high of more than 600 educators from 74 different schools attended the reception and awards dinner. They are among the 4,662 educators representing 820 schools from across the country that have been honoured at the Weston Awards since 2005.

"The teachers, administrators, and support staff from these schools have an unparalleled dedication to teaching which is reflected in their students' triumphs," said Lisa-Diane Fortier, Fraser Institute director of education programs.

"Every single year, these educators are finding new ways for their students to succeed in reading, writing, and math, and it's important that they receive the accolades they so richly deserve."

The awards are based on an analysis of the Ministry of Education's student results data for each school included in the Fraser Institute's annual Report Card on Ontario's Elementary Schools. Out of 2,742 elementary schools included in the report card, only the top 30 performers in each category were invited to participate in the awards.

Toronto schools dominated the awards, placing first in all three categories.

Cornell Junior Public School of Toronto won the award for Determination in Academic Achievement along with a $3,000 prize after being named a runner-up in this category last year and earning Weston Awards honours every year since 2006. Runners-up were Agincourt Junior Public School of Toronto, which was named a School of Distinction in this category last year, and Blessed Margherita of Città di Castello Catholic School of Toronto, which earned School of Distinction recognition in this category in 2007 and 2008. Each received a $1,000 prize.

J. R. Wilcox Community School of Toronto won the award for Improvement in Academics along with a $3,000 prize. Runners-up Ridgewood Public School of Coboconk, a community in the city of Kawartha Lakes, and Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic Elementary School of Hamilton each received a $1,000 prize.

Kennedy Public School of Toronto, which has been recognized at the Weston Awards every year since 2005, won the award for Overall Academic Achievement along with a $3,000 prize. The school won in this category in 2005 and has been a finalist every year since. This year's runners-up were Seneca Hill Public School of Toronto—the winner in this category every year since 2006 and second runner-up in 2005—and Denlow Public School of Toronto, which has been a runner-up in this category since 2006. Each runner-up received a $1,000 prize.

All of the remaining school teams received School of Distinction recognition.

One common misconception about the Weston Awards is that only the most privileged schools are honoured for their performance on the province's standardized tests.

"The Weston Awards honour educators who prove that academic excellence is achievable for all schools. In the case of Improvement in Academics, we celebrate where these schools were five years ago in terms of academics and how far they've come since then. With Determination in Academic Achievement, we honour schools located in environments where many would say consistent student success is not possible, yet that's exactly what they're achieving," Fortier said.

"These awards are about encouraging excellent educators to keep doing what they're doing to provide students a better education. Their commitment to excellence cannot be overstated."

The Fraser Institute is an independent research and educational organization with locations across North America and partnerships in more than 70 countries. Its mission is to measure, study, and communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on the welfare of individuals. To protect the Institute's independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit

Backgrounder: Complete list of all Weston Award-winning schools    
Winner Cornell Junior Public School Toronto
First Runner-up Agincourt Junior Public School Toronto
Second Runner-up Blessed Margherita of Città di Castello Catholic School Toronto
School of Distinction    
Bobcaygeon Public School   Bobcaygeon
Cardinal Newman Catholic School   Brampton
Westminster Public School   Brockville
Our Lady of Lourdes Separate School   Hamilton
St. Lawrence Catholic Elementary School   Hamilton
St. Aloysius Catholic Elementary School   Kitchener
Saint Paul Catholic Elementary School   Norwood
Our Lady of Fatima School   Renfrew
St. Ann Catholic School   Sault Ste. Marie
Seaforth Public School   Seaforth
St. Alfred Catholic Elementary School   St. Catharines
Saint Clement Catholic Elementary School   St. Clements
Straffordville Public School   Straffordville
Ellesmere-Statton Public School   Toronto
Glamorgan Junior Public School   Toronto
Holy Family Catholic School   Toronto
Humberwood Downs Jr Middle Academy   Toronto
Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School   Toronto
Pauline Junior Public School   Toronto
Saint Helen Catholic School   Toronto
Saint Martha Catholic School   Toronto
St. James Catholic School   Toronto
St. Sebastian Catholic School   Toronto
Murray Centennial Public School   Trenton
Winner J. R. Wilcox Community School Toronto
First Runner-up Ridgewood Public School Coboconk
Second Runner-up Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic Elementary School Hamilton
Schools of Distinction    
St. Francis de Sales Catholic School   Ajax
St. Jude Catholic School   Ajax
St. Paul's Catholic School   Alliston
John XXIII Catholic School   Arnprior
Haileybury Public School   Haileybury
Riverside Public School   Huntsville
Michael Cranny Elementary School   Maple
Mother St. Bride School   North Bay
Bobby Orr Public School   Oshawa
Lady Evelyn Alternative School   Ottawa
Cathedral Catholic School   Pembroke
James Keating Elementary School   Penetanguishene
Crosby Heights Public School   Richmond Hill
St. Vincent Catholic Elementary School   Thunder Bay
Blessed Margherita of Città di Castello Catholic School   Toronto
Chartland Junior Public School   Toronto
Humberwood Downs Junior Middle Academy   Toronto
Pape Avenue Junior Public School   Toronto
Rama Central Public School   Washago
Holy Name Catholic School   Welland
St. Theresa Catholic School   Whitby
St. Clement Catholic Elementary School   Woodbridge
Winner Kennedy Public School Toronto
First Runner-up Seneca Hill Public School Toronto
Second Runner-up Denlow Public School Toronto
Schools of Distinction    
Katimavik Elementary School   Kanata
St. Jude Catholic Elementary School   London
Coledale Public School   Markham
Roy H. Crosby Public School   Markham
Stonebridge Public School   Markham
Vista Heights Public School   Mississauga
École élémentaire catholique L'Étoile-de-l'Est   Orléans
École élémentaire catholique Terre-des-Jeunes   Ottawa
St. Martin of Tours Catholic School   Stoney Creek
Bayview Glen Public School   Thornhill
Arbor Glen Public School   Toronto
Blythwood Junior Public School   Toronto
Courcelette Public School   Toronto
École élémentaire catholique Sainte-Marguerite-d'Youville   Toronto
Islamic Foundation School   Toronto
John Ross Robertson Junior Public School   Toronto
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Separate School   Toronto
Prince of Peace Catholic School   Toronto
Rippleton Public School   Toronto
Saint Henry Catholic School   Toronto
St. Clement Catholic Elementary School   Toronto
St. Michael's Choir School (Jr.)   Toronto
St. Pius X Catholic School   Toronto
St. Justin, Martyr Catholic Elementary School   Unionville
William Berczy Public School   Unionville
École Bellewood Public School   Windsor

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