Felt Just Like Home

This past Tuesday evening, I was at the Mentor College and TEAM School table at the “Fashion With Flare” event.

Now when I say I was at the schools’ table, I should probably clarify because it seemed like every one of the 52 tables of 10 had some sort of connection to us. There were a few dozen current families in attendance and another dozen parents of alumni who came to let us know how their “kids” were doing. We saw alumni who are still in university and “kids” like Britta Funck, who was in my Grade 10 phys ed class in my first year of teaching in 1990! The MC for the evening was former student Matthew Maida and almost all of the teen volunteers for the evening were current students. Even the organizing committee was made up of TEAM and Mentor “Moms” and I am sure that they were putting their experience from MTPA Bingo Nights and the charity Fashion Shows to good use! What struck me most about the evening was how it mimicked many of our school events.

Did it start out “small” and grow into something bigger than the organizers ever expected?
Check. The event has grown exponentially in size and scope after just three years.

Were there lots of student volunteers gaining leadership experience?
Check. They even had their shirts tucked in!

Were the speakers poised and confident as they are on Speech Night?
Check. The only 3 speakers were a former student, the Mom of an alumnus and the Dad of a current student!

If money was collected, did it go to a charity?
Check. The event has made a three-year commitment of $250,000 to fund a child-friendly emergency room at the Credit Valley location of the Trillium Health Partners.

Did it start at 7:00 sharp?
Check.

While I was privileged to be one of the principals of the school that was sponsoring the event, full of pride for the confidence our high school students showed, happy to hear of the success of our alumni and pleased with the support of our parents in attendance support, I was especially proud of the group of Moms who put the event together. Just as our teachers give of their personal time to provide students with the best school experience they can, these Moms chose to give their spare time and energy towards making their community a better place. Over and over last night we heard you say how proud you were of the school for supporting the event; indeed, we are just as proud of YOU.

Chris Starkey
Administrative Principal
Mentor College/TEAM School

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