Today was a special day at White Pines Collegiate as the school hosted a Citizenship Ceremony at which 22 new Canadian citizens were presented Canadian Citizenship Certificates. White Pines teacher Mary Maurice and her Canadian and World Studies class co-planned the event along with officials from the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Offices. Platform guests included Joanna Wesolowski the Presiding Official from IRCC, RCMP Constable Earl Dalphy, Sandra Paul for MP Terry Sheehan, Jennifer Sarlo Chair of Algoma District School Board (ADSB), Brent Vallee Superintendent of Education for ADSB, Joey Turco Principal of White Pines, Benn Fisher ADSB Student Trustee and Grade 12 student, and Moira McGonegal Grade 8 White Pines student.
The ceremony began with a welcoming song performed by White Pines Male Drum Group. Special guests took the Oath of Citizenship and were each then presented with their Citizenship Certificates. The drum group from East View Public School (MiigwannanZe) performed two songs then all in attendance were asked to stand for the singing of “O Canada” performed by White Pines students Nora Boyer, Hannah Lindsay and Stephen North. A reception followed as new Canadian families and individuals were welcomed and congratulated. Refreshments including a Canada flag cake were provided by White Pines Foods Class.
The significance of the event was appreciated by all who attended, especially students and staff of White Pines who, along with the rest of the Algoma District School Board, is celebrating Education Week this week, the theme of which is the celebration of Canada’s and Ontario’s 150th anniversary.