The official opening of Janet Metcalfe PS brought together students, staff, families and special guests to celebrate the 121st school in the Waterloo Region District School Board.
Janet Metcalfe PS opened its doors to students and staff for the first time in September 2018. The school is home to 550 students from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 7, with Grade 8 starting in September 2019, and includes a child care centre run by Jacob Hespeler Child Care. The building is filled with windows to maximize natural light, is fully accessible and has a designated room for medically fragile students.
“The opening of a new school signifies many things: new beginnings, new learning opportunities, new experiences and new friends,” said Chairperson Jayne Herring during the opening ceremony. “Naming this school after Janet Metcalfe, a pioneer in public education is an incredible opportunity to inspire our students to carry on her innovative and forward-thinking spirit.”
Janet Metcalfe was Canada’s first kindergarten teacher, and she taught in Waterloo region for more than 30 years. Records indicate that her work alongside Jeremiah Suddaby on early kindergarten education played a significant role in understanding the principles and practice of education in the late 19th Century.
The Honourable Lisa Thompson, Minister of Education, joined the celebration and echoed the comments of Chairperson Herring. “Congratulations to Chair Herring and trustees, Director Bryant, Principal Hale and the students and staff of Janet Metcalfe Public School,” Minister Thompson said. “I can’t wait to hear what the future has in store for this school and its Mavericks.”
The evening was full of celebration, with a student dance performance and the school choir delighting the audience. Superintendent, Student Achievement and Well-Being Graham Shantz provided the dedication to the school with two students ringing the school bell to open the school officially.
“At the Waterloo Region District School Board, our purpose is to innovate tomorrow by educating today. We strive to do this each day, but we can’t do it alone,” said Director of Education John Bryant. “Families and community members play a major role in strengthening the learning that happens each day at school. By seeing you here tonight, it’s proof that you’re committed to the success of your child, the school and the community.”
Congratulations to Janet Metcalfe Public School, the new home of the Mavericks.