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Ottawa Catholic Board hiring new teachers due to increased student enrollment

It's good news for the Ottawa Catholic School Board who reported better than expected enrollment. The public board, however, is dealing with a shortfall.

Bruyère Foundation

Good morning!

It is Friday the 13th. I hope everyone has a worry-free day. I certainly feel behind this week after the holiday Monday. It’s only two weeks until Halloween!

We continue to get a lot of emails from Lookout readers about the decreased enrollment the Ottawa Carleton District School Board is facing. In this newsletter we look at the flip side of that, with increased enrollment at the Ottawa Catholic School Board. We also wrote about Adi Vital-Kaploun who was killed in Israel during the Hamas conflict. She has deep ties to Ottawa.

Wishing everyone a great weekend.

— Charlie Senack, [email protected]

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Friday: 14 🌡️ 5 | ⛅️

Saturday: 14 🌡️ 7 | ⛅️

Sunday: 12 🌡️ 8 | ⛅️

Monday: 15 🌡️ 5 | ⛅️


Catholic school board sees increased enrollment as public board deals with shortfall

Charlie Senack/Ottawa Lookout

Increased enrollment: The Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB) said they are hiring dozens of new teachers and staff to deal with an influx in new students. An Oct. 10 report said enrollment is up 4.9 percent this year, totalling 2,252 new students. That’s a 2.5 percent jump over what they were planning for, according to CBC.

  • “We are pleased to report that the Ottawa Catholic School Board has experienced significant growth into the 2023/2024 school year,” superintendent Debbie Kealey said at a meeting Tuesday.

By the numbers: The Catholic board is in the process of hiring 65 new teachers, 30 educational assistants, and five registered early childhood educators.

The breakdown:

  • 10 new teachers are being hired to teach Kindergarten.

  • 12 new teachers are being hired for Grades 1-3.

  • 30 new teachers are being hired for Grades 4-6.

  • 7 new teachers are being hired for Grades 7-8.

  • 6 new teachers are being hired for high school (Grades 9-12).

Decreased enrollment in the OCDSB: While the Catholic board is hiring more staff, the public Ottawa Carleton District School Board is shuffling jobs around after an unexpected student shortfall this year.

According to the Ottawa-Carleton Elementary Occasional Teachers’ Association, the OCDSB overestimated the number of students who would be attending their schools during the 2023-2024 school year.

The consequence: As a result of the planning, some teachers filling long-term occasional teaching positions were bumped out of their jobs to make room for reassigned contract teachers, according to CityNews.

  • “According to the collective agreement … contract teachers who are declared surplus have to be collapsed due to lower enrollment.…This year, it was a quite dramatic number and the impact on my members was extreme. I don’t have an exact number of members affected but probably more than fifty,” union president Pat Dixon said.

Shuffling classrooms: To deal with the lack of students, the OCDSB is shuffling students and teachers to different classrooms in some situations, according to the Ottawa Citizen. This year they have 1,600 fewer students than expected.


💻 46%: The percentage US tech workers make over their Canadian counterparts. [Ottawa Business Journal]

👮‍♂️ 19: The age of a man killed in an Orléans shooting on Wednesday evening. [CTV]

👩 97: The age of an Ottawa woman and former nun was charged with historical sexual assaults at Residential Schools in the 1960s and 70s. [CBC]


Bingo like you've never experienced it

A Gala event like no other returns for its ninth year on November 4th as the Bruyère and OutCare Foundations partner in support of critical patient care in our community. Experience Hollywood Glam while raising funds for such an important cause.

Black Tie Bingo presented by Emond Harnden features sumptuous decor, a beauty bar, photo booth, silent auction, seven action-packed Bingo games, and Ottawa’s own legendary crooner Johnny Vegas performing tunes from Hollywood’s Golden Age.

The Top Bingo prize is a luxury one-week trip to the Bahamas valued over $8,000 and many more spectacular prizes will be won!

This year raises funds for the Sharon Carstairs - OutCare Foundation Fellowship for Hospice Palliative Nursing recently established at Bruyère and the acquisition of the innovative ALTA Platform, a state-of-the-art robotic patient transfer device, and other innovative equipment to improve the patient experience.

Tickets are all-inclusive and selling fast, with valet parking part of the evening’s memorable package. Purchase tickets here.


Ottawa woman killed in Israel by Hamas terrorist group

Handout Photo

Brutal murder: The Jewish Federation of Ottawa says 33-year-old Adi Vital-Kaploun who was living in Israel has been killed by terrorism group Hamas. The “amazing mother” was residing in Kibbutz Holit, a small community near the border with Gaza, according to CTV.

At a press conference on Wednesday, Andrea Freedman, CEO of the Jewish Centre, read a statement on behalf of Vital-Kaploun’s family, who wanted to share her story while asking for privacy.

  • “Her love was like rays of sunshine warming the world around her with her smile, her warmth and compassion.… Adi loved her country of Israel... Adi also loved Canada and was a proud Canadian citizen from a local Ottawa family with deep community ties,” Freedman said in a statement.

The details of Vital-Kaploun’s death were not publicly released. She is one of at least three Canadians killed by Hamas in Israel, according to CP24. 

Political response: Ottawa Mayor Mark Sutcliffe said he’s spoken with Vital-Kaploun’s family, according to CBC.

  • "It breaks my heart to see what's happening there. My thoughts are with all of the victims and all of the families in Ottawa who have been affected by what's been happening,” Sutcliffe said.

The mayor also confirmed on Twitter that Vital-Kaploun was the granddaughter of longtime ByWard Market shop owner Irving Rivers.

Increased security: Across the globe, there is an increased police presence outside of synagogues and Jewish places of congregation. In Ottawa, police officers and private security are on site at the Soloway Jewish Centre.

In a press release sent out Thursday by Ottawa Police, they said their intelligence and investigative units continue to work with federal and provincial police alongside security partners to monitor the local situation. To date no credible threats have been received in Ottawa.

  • “We continue to see peaceful assemblies of residents and we will be there to protect individuals and their rights. There is zero tolerance for hate incidents or hate crimes in Ottawa. We will investigate any reports of hate motivated offences, incidents, or acts,” the force said.


🚊 The part at the heart of the issues with the LRT is a nut inside the sealed wheel assemblies that works itself loose over time.. Train builder Alstom said issues with the axle hub assembly are caused by higher-than-expected lateral loads on the vehicle's axles. The part is only inspected every 800,000 kilometres, which is why it wasn’t preemptively discovered. [Ottawa Citizen]

🚕 Some patients will now be arriving to Ottawa hospitals by taxi. Ottawa paramedics say low acuity patients will be transported via taxi to alternate destinations best suited for their immediate healthcare needs this fall. Paramedics responded to 140,772 calls for service during the first nine months of this year, up 3.6 per cent from the same period in 2022. [CTV]

🚌 Some good news for OC Transpo. Ridership is up to the highest levels seen since before the COVID-19 pandemic. There were 6.4 million passenger trips on buses and the Confederation Line last month, up about half a million trips from September 2022. [CTV]

🏈 Residents in Old Ottawa South are continuing to raise concerns over the new Lansdowne 2.0 plan. About 200 people attended a community meeting on Wednesday evening to share their views. [CBC]

👮‍♂️ An Ottawa cop who stepped on a man’s neck for two minutes has been found guilty of assault. Sentencing for Const. Goran Beric will take place at a later date. [CBC]

💩 It’s respiratory virus season in Ottawa and cases of COVID-19 alongside other illnesses are rising. Wastewater levels are closely being monitored by officials to have an idea of how severe the situation is getting. [Ottawa Citizen]

🚌 OC Transpo is confirming that light rail transit might never reach suburban communities like Barrhaven and Kanata. The reason? Costs are too high and demand for service has fallen away. OC Transpo general manager Renée Amilcar said they might look at expanding bus rapid transit to improve local routes. [Barrhaven Independent]

🛻 The Ottawa convoy trial continued this week as locals testified about how the sanctuary at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in downtown Ottawa was “brutally altered” during the siege, with nearby residents having to put up with blaring horns. [CTV]



🎻 School of Music Homecoming Concert, Sunday 2 pm: A concert honouring Dr. Anant Anantaraman, who set up a foundation that has provided scholarships to the uOttawa School of Music for nearly 30 years. One recipient, Zhengdong Liang, will play César Franck’s Sonata in A major. There will also be performances by current students. At Tabaret Hall, 75 Laurier Ave. E. Free.

🎼 National Capital Opera Competition, Saturday 2 pm: An afternoon of great opera with the country’s upcoming opera stars. At the First Unitarian Congregation of Ottawa, 30 Cleary Ave. Tickets $12.


👼 Ottawa Parent & Child Expo, Saturday and Sunday: The city’s biggest kid-focused exhibition is back. With plenty to do and see from activities, live animals, and even a live appearance of Bluey and Bingo. At the Nepean Sportsplex, 1701 Woodroffe Ave. Tickets $14.


🍻 Byward Oktoberfest, Friday 6 pm: Celebrate Oktoberfest complete with traditional German food and plenty of great beer. At the Lowertown Brewery, 73 York St. Tickets $14.

🫒 Masterclass by Aurelius Fine Oils, Sunday 2:30 pm: Want to dive really deep into olive oil? This in-person session will get you up to speed fine olive oils and balsamic vinegars. At Chef's Paradise, 1314 Bank St. Tickets $40.


🛩️ CAPCON 2023, Saturday 9 am: The city’s annual plastic modelling competition, with models of historical and fictitious creations. At the Canadian War Museum, 1 Vimy Pl. Free with museum admission.

🐩 Ottawa Pet Expo, Saturday and Sunday: Everything for you and your pet. From live demonstrations to plenty of vendors it’s all here. You can even bring your pet (be sure to sign the waiver!) At the EY Centre, 4899 Uplands Dr. Adult tickets $17.


👗 613Flea, Saturday 10 am: As many as 150 vendors with everything from vinyl records to vintage clothing, and everything in between. At the Aberdeen Pavilion at Lansdowne Park. Free admission.


Staying informed about the world doesn’t have to be boring.

International Intrigue is a free global affairs briefing created by former diplomats to help the next generation of leaders better understand how geopolitics, business and technology intersect. They deliver the most important geopolitical news and analysis in <5-minute daily briefing that you’ll actually look forward to reading.


What happened this week in food

🧁 Looking for a bakery with a unique twist? This is the only Brazilian bakery in Ottawa. The shop at 395 Alexandre-Taché Blvd. is a must-stop destination either on your trip to or from Aylmer.

👩‍🍳 Also on the sweet treat front, this local baker launched her own home business after getting the itch during the COVID-19 pandemic.

🥟 If you’re looking for a hidden gem, this dumpling spot should definitely be on your list. Trust your instincts and don’t let its location fool you.

  • A garden outside Barrhaven United Church has been named after a long-standing community member. [Barrhaven Independent]

  • Want news without the BS? Check out 1440's daily email curated by PhDs and experts. They scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. [Sponsored]

  • Nepean MPP Lisa MacLeod is making it known that she’s back to business as the Ontario legislature ramps up for another season. She held a community corn boil at Mādahòkì Farm off Hunt Club. [Barrhaven Independent]

  • The Kitchissippi Times is getting ready to celebrate their 20th anniversary on Nov. 14. [Kitchissippi Times]

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Mike Carrroccetto shares this photo of a sunset over Wellington Street West.
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