Dear members and friends of the Ukrainian Canadian Community in the Greater Toronto Area,
It gives us immense pleasure to inform you that at their board meeting on the evening of May 31, 2018, the trustees of the TCDSB proclaimed the month of September as Ukrainian Canadian Heritage Month, and September 7th as Ukrainian Canadian Heritage Day at the TCDSB.
A delegation of parents’ council chairs and principals from Josyf Cardinal Slipyj, St. Demetrius and St. Josaphat schools, and members of the UCC-Toronto education committee, attended a TCDSB board meeting on May 2, 2018 to make this request of the trustees. The delegation request was supported by letters from His Excellency Bishop Stephen Chmilar, and MPP for Etobicoke Centre, Yvan Baker. The delegation’s presentation was received by the trustees and referred to TCDSB staff, who returned to the Board of Trustees on May 31, 2018 with a report stating their approval and support.
Orest Sklierenko, chair of the UCC-Toronto’s Education Committee made the following statement:
“The Ukrainian Canadian community and the Eastern Rite Ukrainian Catholic Church looks forward to working with TCDSB staff in building an informative program for Ukrainian Canadian Heritage Month. It is our hope this program will allow all TCDSB staff and students to further enrich their understanding of, and appreciation for, the Eastern Rite Ukrainian Catholic Church, the Ukrainian Canadian experience and the impact our community has made on the Canada we know today, and Ukrainian art, culture and traditions.
We would like to extend our thanks to Bishop Stephen Chmilar, MPP Yvan Baker, Trustee Ann Andrachuk and her colleagues on the TCDSB Board of Trustees, and TCDSB staff for their support of this initiative.”
Elaborating on the history of these schools, Mr. Sklierenko further remarked:
“UCC-Toronto would also like to Thank all community members and stakeholders who have supported the Eastern Rite Ukrainian Schools at the TCDSB over almost six decades since the founding of the first Eastern Rite Ukrainian Catholic school, St. Josaphat, in 1961. UCC Toronto would like to especially thank the principals and CSPC chairs for their time and efforts as active and engaged participants on its Education Committee.”