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School Profile

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Last updated on Monday, September 18, 2017.

Bell Times

8:40 AM - 3:15 PM

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Principal

Angela Ferguson - 905.385.5395 | Email Angela Ferguson

Vice-Principal(s)

Joshua Connor, John Northey

Superintendent

Paul Denomme - 905.527.5092 x 2304 | E-mail Paul Denomme

Trustee

Wes Hicks - 905.383.2222 | E-mail Wes Hicks

School Council Chairs

Mrs. Val Gravelle & Mrs. Margaret Reid

Administrative Office Staff

  • Ms. Sandra Cardwell
  • Ms. Heather Beitz
  • Ms. Sandra Kish
  • Ms. Hajer Marghani
  • Ms. Jacqueline Abbott

Our School

Westmount Secondary School is located on the west mountain in Hamilton. Its unique and dynamic secondary school program of self-paced learning is available to all students of the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board. In this learning environment, students are encouraged and required to take responsibility for their own learning. Westmount aims to develop independence and decision-making skills in its students.

Each credit course of study offered at the school is organized into twenty units that are packaged into Learning Guides. Students work through these Learning Guides in sequence at their own pace. Students who are able to fast-track are allowed to do so, and students who need additional time to complete work are also accommodated. Students attend school daily and participate at their own pace in lessons, presentations, group activities, assignments, tests, and individual study as outlined in the Learning Guides.

School policies are developed to accommodate and encourage continuous progress and accountability. As students accept greater responsibility for their work and their work habits, they can earn the opportunity to plan out parts of their school day. They may negotiate with their teachers to work in an area within the school where they can use the resources that they require, or receive the assistance that they might need. Students are able to track their progress daily, and receive monthly progress reports.

The Westmount program is open to students from across the District, and best-suited to students whose families support the development of goal setting, effective time management and independent learning skills. Westmount students complete requirements for and earn their Ontario Secondary School diploma.

BELIEF STATEMENTS:

1. Citizenship: We encourage students to become community leaders/members who are socially aware and respectful of the uniqueness of all individuals.

2. Pace: We believe that students learn at different rates and, therefore, complete work at different rates.

3. Style: We believe that students have differing learning styles.

4. Responsibility: We encourage students to take responsibility for their own learning and behaviour.

5. Accountability: We track, record and report on student progress on a continuous basis.

Program & Services

Student Success Supports

Self-Paced Model: The self-paced model allows flexibility to meet individual student needs, whether to permit an accelerated completion of courses or additional time beyond one semester.
Literacy: We offer after-school literacy programs during the school year for students needing additional literacy support. Our students consistently achieve high success rates on the Grade 10 Literacy Test.
Advisor Program: All students meet frequently with their advisors who monitor progress, provide support, and offer individual consultation. Students also receive monthly reports during advisor to take home to help parents monitor progress.
Student Success: Our Student Success Team meets regularly with the Guidance Counsellors and Administration to provide additional support for students experiencing difficulties to help ensure learning.
Credit Recovery and Learning Strategies Courses: Grade 9 and 10 students are able to access Credit Recovery and Learning Strategies courses to develop their learning skills and to achieve success in their courses.
Learning Skills: Westmount offers the summer STEP program for incoming Grade 9 students.
Learning Resource: Learning Resource Teachers offer support to all students throughout the school day.
Summer Carry-Forward Program: Westmount offers a two-week program in July during which students may complete, begin, or move forward in a self-paced course.

Program Highlights

The Self-Paced Program: The details of our self-paced program are outlined earlier in this profile.
Enriched Programming: Westmount offers enriched curriculum which is available to students who are identified gifted; other able students may be placed in these courses in consultation with the Department Head or Principal, as space permits. These congregated classes are available in English, Mathematics, Geography, History and Science. Students find it beneficial for the opportunity to accelerate the pace of their course completion, to pursue areas of interest in more detail, and to cover the subject areas in greater depth and breadth.  In the senior grades, Westmount offers Advanced Placement in select courses.
Advanced Fitness Training:  Students who are high level athletes are able to maintain their rigorous training schedules while continuing to progress in their education in the self-paced format.
The Arts: Westmount sings, dances, performs, creates and expresses itself through a vibrant arts program. Drama students are on our stage for improvisation, Broadway-style musicals and student productions. Students are able to take courses in Dance and Theatre Production. Music students have a unique opportunity annually for in-depth study at prominent universities with international music authorities in cities such as New York, Boston or Chicago. In addition, Westmount hosts the Annual Music Invitational Concerts, featuring musical performances by a number of schools in the district.
Media Studies: Rapidly growing are our Animation, Media Arts and Communication courses, supported by Mac and PC equipment as well as an in-school television studio. Westmount’s Annual Film Festival showcases our students’ creativity.

Clubs

  • Chess Club
  • Computer Administration Team
  • Enviro Club (EcoNinjas)
  • Reach for the Top
  • Grad Committee
  • Riot-Teen Tobacco Group
  • The Wire (School Newspaper)
  • Social Committee
  • SPLAT
  • Student Council
  • Westmount Athletic Council (WAC)
  • Yearbook Team
  • Westmount TV
  • Muslim Prayer Group
  • Westmount Film & Animation Festival
  • Student Yoga
  • Circle of Friends
  • Women in Technology Conference
  • Terry Fox Walk/Run for Cancer Research
  • Drama: Sears Festival, Sketch Comedy, Stage Crew, Talent Show, School Musical, Jr. Drama Club
  • Dance: Westmount Spirit & Dance Team, Jr. Hip Hop Crew, Jr. & Sr. Dance Ensemble
  • Music: Symphonic Band Gr. 9 & 10, Grand 9 Band, Jr. Jazz Band, Jazz 1, Jazz Choir, Wind Orchestra, Concert Choir
  • Athletics: Girls’/Boys’ Midget, Jr. & Sr. Basketball, Midget, Jr. & Sr. Badminton, Baseball, Girls’ Soft Ball, Boys’/Girls’ Curling, Boys’ Jr. Hockey, Boys’ Varsity Hockey, Girls’ Hockey, Boys’ Jr. Tackle Football, Boys’ Gr. 9 Touch Football, Girls’/Boys’ Gr. 9 Soccer, Boys Indoor Soccer, Boys’ Varsity Soccer, Girls’ Soccer, Girls’ Touch Football, Girls’/Boys’ Jr. Volleyball, Girls’/Boys’ Sr. Volleyball, Co-Ed. Volleyball, Jr. & Sr. Girls’/Boys’ Tennis, Boys’ Jr/Sr Waterpolo, Girls’ Waterpolo, Girls’ Field Hockey, Cross-Country Track, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track, Girls’/Boys’ Varsity Golf, Orienteering, Swim Team

Before/After School Program or Activities

After-School Literacy Program

Our School Plan

Curriculum Focus

Westmount’s continuous program and course entry allow a maximum of flexibility for student learning. Planning is underway to have all courses available on The Hub for lesson delivery and online learning to further support self-paced learning. All students have an Outlook account (our online communication system) and are able to communicate with teachers and other students as well as access to important information through the Guidance Hub page.

Environment Focus

SAFE SCHOOLS: Westmount is working to ensure that emergency protocols and procedures such as Code Lock Down and Anaphylaxis Procedures are in place and familiar to staff and students. We continue our efforts to work toward a bully-free environment.

Parent & Community Involvement

Parent

School Council: The Westmount School Council meets monthly on the fourth Wednesday of each month. Parent members sit on school planning committees, such as the Advisor Review Team, the WEST Steering Committee and the Safe Schools Committee. The School Council has worked with the school to organize and present an evening in September for Grade 9 parents about the details of the Westmount program.

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