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The Sudbury Catholic Board Brings the World of the Classroom to the Vistas of Killarney

January 28, 2009 - The Sudbury Catholic District School Board is embarking upon a new initiative that will seek to support and expand the educational, cultural, and historical aspects of Killarney Village and St. Joseph Catholic School by establishing an outdoor education centre in the heart of the small community. The school board owns 7.24 acres of property associated with St. Joseph Catholic School and would serve as the host site for the centre.

The Sudbury Catholic District School Board will be partnering with Killarney Provincial Park to offer programming that will be based on the Ontario Ministry of Education school curriculum and will add the bonus component of a unique Killarney experience. The centre will focus on outdoor education but will also offer students the opportunity to learn about healthy living, child and youth stewardship, values of faith, community studies, aboriginal teachings, ecological and environmental studies (focussing on how current practices influence the world around us and the sustain ability of resources in an ever resource hungry world). The ecology focus will extend across elementary through to secondary and even post-secondary opportunities.

The secondary opportunities would permit biology and geology students the opportunity to undertake actual field course experience that would better prepare them for making career and post-secondary choices. From the post-secondary perspective, courses could be developed that would support university courses (or be a direct part of these courses) in a broad range of disciplines, most notably ecology and geology.

Groups that have been consulted include Science North, the City of Greater Sudbury, FedNor, the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, Laurentian University, Cambrian College, College Boreal, the Municipality of Killarney, several community businesses in Killarney, and many, many more. Some funding has already been committed to this project from outside sources.

The Sudbury Catholic Board has passed a motion at the January 20, 2009 board meeting supporting the position of Start Up Coordinator for the project and who will be starting this week. The start up coordinator will develop and implement a project plan which will allow schools to begin booking trips for this spring. Initially, the programming will involve Grade 6 Science, Grade 10 Science - (Grade 9 next year) and the development of an orienteering course that would be accessible for all grades.

The Sudbury Catholic District School Board is fully committed to the successful launch of the Outdoor Centre in May 2009. More information will be provided in the upcoming weeks.

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