Brother Edmund Rice
Catholic Secondary School
(secondary)
55 Pelham Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M6N 1A5

School-Designed Web Site

Course Listing

Total enrollment 364
Principal Joseph Clarkson
Tel: (416) 393-5523 Fax: (416) 393-5889
Superintendent Douglas Yack
Tel: (416) 222-8282 ext. 5371 Fax: (416) 512-3442
Parish St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church
170 Bloor Street West
Toronto, Ontario
M6P 1B1
Local Trustee Christine Nunziata
Tel: (416) 512-3419 Fax: (416) 229-5353

History & Tradition

Brother Edmund Rice (1762-1844), founder of the Congregation of Christian Brothers and the Presentation Brothers, was a wealthy Waterford (Ireland) businessman. After the tragic death of his wife, he devoted himself to the education of the poor. He was regarded in his lifetime as a person of great holiness.

His life was formally examined by the Congregation of Saints in Rome in 1993 after lengthy and detailed study of all the available materials connected with his life and work. The Congregation recommended to the pope that Brother Edmund Rice be declared venerable. This acknowledged that he lived a life of heroic virtue. In October 1996, Brother Edmund Rice was beatified. Brother Edmund Rice Catholic Secondary School was founded in 1977 under the direction of the Congregation of the Christian Brothers with the assistance of the Sisters of the Presentation of Our Blessed Virgin Mother, the Archdiocese of Toronto and the Metropolitan Separate School Board (now the Toronto Catholic District School Board). It is a co-educational, composite school founded to offer a wide range of courses at varying levels of instruction to a student population with a broad spectrum of learning styles and abilities.

The school opened with 150 students at the grade 9 level and was housed in several classrooms and portables at St. Cecilia's Catholic School on Evelyn Avenue. A move to the present school site was made in September 1978, and the student population has increased considerably since that time.

During the early years the school was supported in part by the tuition fees of the private school. These first years of existence were characterized by sacrifice on the part of all involved in the school. The lack of facilities was the chief problem but this was alleviated somewhat by the opening of the main section of the building in 1981. The next significant milestone was 1984 and the extension of funding from the provincial government. The school is now funded completely through the TCDSB, and the Congregation of Christian Brothers have relinquished their involvement in the school.

How We Meet the Diverse Needs of Our Students

Brother Edmund Rice Secondary School is committed to Catholic education. We integrate Gospel values into the subject disciplines at the academic level and provide many opportunities to live our Catholic traditions through prayer, liturgies and outreach opportunities. The school provides more intensive Catholic leadership training to interested students who are known as the BERPS, the Brother Edmund Rice pastoral students.

Our secondary school is small enough to provide a vary caring, safe and welcoming environment. Policies which govern student behaviour are reviewed annually by students, staff and parents and then included in our code of behaviour. As well, all of our grade 9 students take part in a life-skills program which includes training in such areas as conflict resolution and anger management.

The grade 9 program ensures a focus upon students acquiring the skills and attitudes necessary to life-long learning and to success in continuing academic programs.

The school provides many opportunities for students to access computer technology within courses. We also have two across-the curriculum labs of computers that are available to students before, during and after school.

Our co-curricular programs include arts, athletic, academic, pastoral and environmental clubs. Each year the drama students, plus a stage, lighting and sound crew, present a major production. Recent productions have included "Jesus Christ Superstar", "Our Town", "Fame" and "Godspell". 

The intramural athletic program is run by students who form an athletic council. They sponsor the following sports: boys' ball hockey, co-ed ping pong, co-ed volleyball, co-ed badminton, co-ed basketball, co-ed indoor soccer. The varsity teams include the following: indoor soccer, outdoor soccer, softball, volleyball, basketball, badminton and track and field.

Recent upgrades to our school building have included new student locker retrofits, new lighting throughout the entire building, new windows and new exit/entrance doors. As well, our spirited and dedicated students funded a new outdoor basketball court for everyone's use. The biggest upgrade of all, though, is in computer wiring and computer hardware.

"Brother" is big enough to serve yet small enough to really care.


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