Every year, the Global Ideas Institute (GII) gives students in Grade 11 and 12 the opportunity to consider a real-world, far-reaching problem, and propose and develop an innovative solution. Through this Institute, an initiative of the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, students work with U of T professors and graduate student mentors throughout the academic year. This year’s topic is food security and sustainable hunger; as acknowledged by the United Nations, food security is one of the great threats facing the world today. Food security refers to the consistent availability and accessibility of safe and nutritious food; as such, a person is considered food secure when they are consistently able to access safe and nutritious food. The issue of food security is a complex issue of equity and social justice; it intersects with many cultural, economic, environmental, and social concerns.
Facing this immensely challenging topic, the SCS GII Team – comprised of Jiaru C. ’18 and Megan S., Charlotte R., Tilly R., Zoya R., and Lucy F., all ’19, under the guidance of Dr. Jaime Malic – attend monthly lectures and workshops at U of T, complete a variety of readings, and meet regularly at SCS to prepare a proposed solution for a particular aspect of the larger topic that will be shared with industry experts at a day-long symposium in April.
As part of their research, the GII Team recently welcomed SCS parent Sarah Hillyer to school to hear her thoughts on local food insecurity. Sarah had a lot to share on the subject; she worked for many years as a fundraiser with Community Food Centres Canada, an organization whose mission is to build health, belonging, and social justice in low-income Canadian communities through the power of food. Many Canadians who are aware of the challenges and issues around food security in our country are looking to support innovative changes to the system, and Sarah’s job was to steward these donors. “In Canada, it’s not about not having enough food – Canada has enough food,” Sarah shared with the girls. “The issue in this country is not having access to food on a regular basis. Approximately four million people in Canada (1/3 of which are children) are deemed to be ‘food insecure’, either irregularly on a meal-by-meal basis, or on a regular basis.” Sarah described a number of the serious obstacles facing certain demographics in Canada when it comes to food security, and how recent government decisions, such as changes to Ontario’s minimum wage, may impact the issue.
This session was particularly informative for the SCS GII Team as they continue to work on building a solution for the particular aspect of food insecurity they have chosen to focus on: food insecurity among postsecondary students in the GTA. Within the past few weeks, the team developed a causal model for this issue and delivered an initial pitch of their idea to local industry experts from Food Secure Canada, The Stop, and Feedback App. Next up, the team will apply the feedback they received from these experts, conduct additional research, and work together to develop a process or product that could ensure greater food security for postsecondary students – a perhaps surprisingly vulnerable population – in their local community.
Check back next week for another edition of #SCSSpotlight, where we profile a different student, group, activity, or interesting event!
St. Clement's School (SCS) is an Anglican independent school for girls in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The school was founded in 1901 by Canon Thomas Wesley Powell, and was originally co-ed. Students at SCS are often referred to as Clementines.
The school completed a new addition to the building in 2006, which was funded by the Bigger Blazer Campaign, that doubled the space for the students. The renovation included a new gym, performance hall, library and many other improvements.
The school is a member of the Round Square affiliation of schools, and offers the most Advanced Placement courses of any girls' school in Canada.
Houses at St. Clement's School are named after four Royal British houses: York (yellow, lion mascot), Stuart (green, frog mascot), Windsor (purple, walrus mascot) and Tudor (red, elephant mascot). The House Cup is awarded to the house that has the most points at the end of the school year.
The Student Leadership Program combines instruction and hands-on experience and spans the Junior, Middle, and Senior Schools. Junior School students have the opportunity to be a mentor to a younger student as a reading buddy, starting in grade 4. Other early leadership opportunities are the Mentorship and Peer Tutoring programs, where girls as young as grade 6 can be tutors. This program, which continues all the way to grade 12, helps girls recognize that leadership can be a collaborative experience.
Students are encouraged to improve their leadership capabilities by participating in student government and a wide range of special interest clubs. They also elect representatives to lead charitable work, organize special events, and fill key roles in school life. Many of the students also serve as school ambassadors, and you will meet some of these young leaders when you tour the School.
Clementines are encouraged to lead—and learn about leading—within and beyond the School’s walls. Student leadership conferences, topic-specific workshops, leadership retreats and trips, and international and local service projects are all components of SCS leadership training.
For students in grades 9–12, there is a wide range of student-run activities providing leadership opportunities in their areas of interest. Student Council, made up of representatives from grades 7–12, is led by four students elected from the Graduating Class.
The capstone of the Student Leadership Program is the leadership position held by every student in her graduating year, so that she can practise and refine her leadership capabilities. In recognition of their leadership, all Graduating Year students are eligible for the Graduate’s Leadership Award, which is based on a consistent record of academic commitment, leadership, mentorship, and citizenship. Candidates work closely with their assigned staff advisors, who provide guidance and support.
Clubs and activities
Activities and clubs offered by the school include the Philosophy Club, Duke of Edinburgh's Award, Ontario Model Parliament and the Classics Club (which brings students to the Ontario Student Classics Conference at Brock University every year). A list of all the clubs and activities offered by the school can be found here.
Interschool Athletic Teams
- Alpine Skiing
- Cross Country
- Field Hockey
- Ice Hockey
- Track and Field
LINCWell is a comprehensive program of enrichment and support for all students. All students have a guidance counsellor whom they can go to for support at times with busy schoolwork and planning their futures. LINCWell also helps with important life skills (such as organization), and it promotes mental health through relaxing activities like yoga.
St. Clement’s School has been a member of Round Square since 2002. It is one of more than 60 schools worldwide.
Edsby is a website that is used by the St. Clement's community. Students, teachers, staff and parents log into their accounts to keep up to date on school events and classes. Announcements are posted in the School Talk page, where all members of the St. Clement's Edsby account can view them. However, there are pages that are not viewable to everyone unless they are a member of the page. For example, if one is in the Senior Concert Band, they are requested by the band teacher to join the page for updates.
Teachers regularly update their course pages for a digital copy of the work covered during class. They also post the required homework and upcoming summatives.
Students may find Edsby useful for keeping up to date on their schoolwork, and it provides a helpful schedule with both classes and assignments.