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Programs & Academics



The goals for the dance curriculum are to foster creativity, freedom, and expression in movement skills, as well as an appreciation for dance. The grade 9 and 10 courses give novice students skills in a variety of dance styles. For the experienced dancer, it is an outlet for developing and learning ways in which to express ideas/concepts through movement. At the end of the semester, the students showcase the choreography that expresses personal emotion and passion from within the dancer. Dance gives you many benefits physically, mentally, and spiritually which develops the whole student.

Drama is the perfect class to work on creativity, public speaking, focus, and confidence. Students will learn how to be strong leaders, work well in groups and think quickly on their feet all while having fun.  Drama is an active subject that requires students to get up and move through games, group dynamics, script work, improvisation, and many other units.  Students are able to fully express their creativity and work in a comfortable and safe environment. A lot of friends and memories are made in drama class.

Choosing music education is an important aspect in a student’s learning.  Not only will a child learn how to play an instrument, they will develop many other skills that will benefit them for life. Musical training has been proven to develop children’s academic skills in math and reading, create better problem solvers, increase concentration, develop time management skills, the ability to work independently, commitment, patience, confidence, physical coordination, and create excellent teamwork skills. Involvement in a musical community allows students to gain a sense of belonging in an encouraging and supportive environment. The music program at Villanova offers Instrumental Music to grades 9 through 12.  It also offers Vocal Music to grades 10 through 12.

The After School Band program offers several extracurricular activities. Junior Concert Band which is open to grade 9 and 10 rehearse Mondays after school, the Jazz Band which is open to all grades rehearses Wednesdays after school and the Senior Concert Band which is open to grades 10 through 12 rehearses Thursdays after school. These bands have the chance to perform in national competitions with the chance of winning various awards based on their performance.

Visual Arts
The visual arts course at St. Thomas of Villanova is open to all grade nine and ten students.  In these beginning years, students learn techniques and skills that allow them the opportunity to reflect and interpret what they see.  They learn good observational skills so that they can reproduce imagery. They also learn how to explore their own personal style in order to expand their skills as budding artists.

Students have the opportunity to explore many materials and subject matter as well as learn about the history of art and why the art of the past connects with our futures.

As the students expand as artists, they can take senior classes which will prepare them for college and university.  This is where students begin to experiment more with their ideas, techniques and imagery which allows them to have more personal perspectives regarding their creative processes.

Imagery is proudly displayed throughout the school and showcases the talents, hard work and commitment students have for the program.

Creativity is alive and well at Villanova!



Grade 9 & 10
The Introduction to Business course is the foundational course for the business studies program. This course introduces students to each of the major areas of business: business operation, accounting, marketing, information and communication technology, human resources, production, management, international business, finance, and entrepreneurship. This introductory course aims to ensure that all students acquire a general understanding of the role and nature of business, as they begin to develop management skills related to financial decision-making and ethical business practice. The course will provide a strong foundation both for students who wish to pursue business studies in greater depth and for students who wish to master the business-related knowledge and skills required for everyday life.

The Information and Communication Technology in Business course prepares students for a world of business and communication that relies on electronic technology. Rapid changes in information and communication technology have influenced all aspects of our lives, and the operations of business have been particularly affected. Students will benefit from the knowledge and skills they acquire in this course, whether their goal is to understand the effects of technology on business or to gain practical skills using application software that will benefit them throughout their studies and in their careers. This course would be particularly helpful for students who intend to take information and communication technology courses in Grades 11 and 12.


Grade 11 & 12
The Grade 11 and 12 program in business studies offers a variety of courses to help students develop a deeper understanding of the world of business and to focus their interests in this area. There are courses that will help students develop their knowledge and skills in the areas of accounting, entrepreneurship, information and communication technology, international business, marketing, and business leadership. Students can select courses in entrepreneurship to learn about the creation and operation of a small business or how to develop and apply enterprising skills as employees. In the information and communication technology courses, students will develop essential digital literacy and application software skills critical for success in their academic studies and chosen career path. They will also be able to select courses that focus on the key skills and concepts of accounting and marketing, or courses that will develop their understanding of the nature of leadership and the ways in which businesses are structured and managed to achieve organizational goals. In the international business courses, students will learn about opportunities that lie beyond our borders and will explore the business relationships that Canadian companies and the Canadian government have established with other countries.

The design of the business studies program will enable students to select courses that relate to their interests and that prepare them for further study or work in the field of their choosing. Business studies courses are well suited for inclusion in programs that lead to a diploma with a Specialist High-Skills Major. Whether students eventually work in business or simply use the services of business, the business studies program will provide them with a foundation for making wise choices and informed decisions.


Catholic Studies

Grade 9
The primary text for this course is Be With Me. Using the Christian metaphor of ‘call’ and the archetype of ‘journey’, this course invites students into a conversation between their own story and the lived story of the Christian community. With eyes of faith, students will gaze through a lens filtered by Scripture, Profession of Faith, Christian Moral Development, Prayer, Sacramental Life, and Family Life in order to examine the attitudes and actions that characterize the Christian life, particularly in the areas of interpersonal relationships and sexuality. Students develop their understanding of Gospel values while actively engaging in a variety of challenging educational activities.

Grade 10
This course examines the relationship between the person and message of Christ and the dominant attitudes of contemporary culture. Central to this course is the sacramental nature of Jesus and through His incarnation, the sacramentality of the Catholic Church, persons, and all of creation. Beginning with students’ own life experiences, seen in light of the Gospel narratives, students acquire a deeper and more systematic knowledge of Christ, his message, and his Church. Connections between the Church and contemporary culture are explored in terms of what it means to be a responsible adolescent developing as a member of a Catholic, Christian community while living within the context of a secular society. In the Family Life Education strand, students explore a variety of topics related to the themes of person-hood, interpersonal relationships, and sexuality. Students have the opportunity to experience first-hand the call and response to Christian Community Service.

Grade 11
World Religions introduces students to the various expressions and responses to humanity’s encounter with mystery in our quest for life’s meaning. The course explores the life wisdom found in the responses of the major faith traditions to the compelling questions concerning the spiritual dimension of human experience, self-understanding, and the role of the individual within the family. In the Family Life Education strand, students explore a variety of topics related to the themes of personhood, family relationships, and sexuality.

Its purpose is to familiarize students with the language of religious discourse and to develop their awareness of the place and function of religion in human culture. This exploration can lead students to a more authentic adherence to their religious tradition and a deeper commitment to the Catholic faith. It can help to break down prejudices and misconceptions about other religious traditions and, at the same time, strengthen and affirm the students’ own search for answers to life’s meaning.

This course enables students to discover what others believe and how they live, and to appreciate their own unique heritage. Students will learn about the teachings and traditions of a variety of religions, the connections between religions and the development of civilizations, the place and function of religion in human experience, and the influence of a broad range of religions on contemporary society. This course also introduces students to skills used in researching and investigating world religions.

Grade 12
This course is directed toward the clear identification of Catholic moral principles and the concrete application of these principles in the lives of students. The course proceeds from foundational beliefs rooted in Sacred Scripture concerning justice and peace to an exploration of the principles that shape Christian life. In the Family Life Education strand, students explore a variety of topics related to the themes of personhood, interpersonal relationships, and sexuality.

Special attention is given to the interaction between the Church and culture. The modern world is characterized by a multiplicity of values, philosophies, and ideologies. In a democratic, pluralistic society, these concepts may creatively reinforce one another or they may compete with and contradict one another. The Christian moral life is a call to follow Jesus Christ, to believe in the redemptive love of God for humankind and to proclaim and incarnate the reign of God as inaugurated by Jesus Christ. This course is intended to prepare the senior student for this lifelong task


Co-operative Education

Co-operative Education allows students the opportunity to gain experience in the workplace while earning high school credits.  Co-operative Education is available to students in grades 11 and 12.  Students can take 2-period or all day co-op and they earn credits while working outside of the school.

Thinking about a career in accounting? Villanova offers two accounting courses to put you on the right path!

Grade 11 – BAF3M0 – Financial Accounting Fundamentals

Grade 12 – BAT4M – Financial Accounting Principles

Taking these courses will give you a jumpstart if you plan on taking

Accounting in College or University

Careers in accounting include Bookkeeping, Auditing, and Forensic Accounting


The English program in Grades 9 to 12 includes compulsory courses and optional courses.

Grade 9 & 10
The compulsory courses emphasize strong core competencies in listening, speaking, reading, writing, viewing, and representing. As part of their program in Grades 9 and 10, students must take one compulsory course in English in each grade. These courses are offered in two types, academic and applied.

One optional course is offered in the Grade 9–10 curriculum – Literacy Skills: Reading and Writing, Grade 10. This course offers students an opportunity to enhance their literacy skills. It may be taken to fulfil an optional credit requirement or the Group 1 additional compulsory credit requirement for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). It may also be used, at the principal’s discretion, as a substitution for one of the compulsory credits required in English. The Literacy Skills course is an “open” course.

Students choose between course types on the basis of their interests, achievement, and postsecondary goals. The course types offered in Grades 9 and 10 are defined as follows:

Academic courses develop students’ knowledge and skills through the study of theory and abstract problems. These courses focus on the essential concepts of a subject and explore related concepts as well. They incorporate practical applications as appropriate.

Applied courses focus on the essential concepts of a subject, and develop students’ knowledge and skills through practical applications and concrete examples. Familiar situations are used to illustrate ideas, and students are given more opportunities to experience hands-on applications of the concepts and theories they study.

Open courses are designed to prepare students for further study in the subject and to enrich their education generally. These courses comprise a set of expectations that are appropriate for all students.

Grade 11 & 12
The compulsory courses emphasize strong core competencies in oral communication, reading and literature studies, writing, and media studies. As part of their program in Grades 11 and 12, students must take one compulsory course in English in each grade. They may choose their compulsory courses from three types of courses in Grades 11 and 12: university preparation, college preparation, and workplace preparation.

Optional courses provide students with opportunities to explore individual interests and to deepen or extend some of the knowledge and skills acquired in the compulsory courses. Optional courses may be taken to fulfil optional credit requirements or the Group 1 additional compulsory credit requirement for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). An optional course may also be used, at the principal's discretion, as a substitution for a compulsory credit required in English. Four types of optional courses are offered: university preparation, university/college preparation, college preparation, and open.



Caio studenti bilingue! Check out the language classes to further develop your communication skills with other languages! Its always a nice little skill to have, so sign up for a class today at your guidance office!

The study of French is an important part of the secondary school curriculum. French is not only one of Canada’s two official languages but is also widely used around the world. Knowledge of a second language is valuable for a number of reasons. Through learning a second language, students strengthen their first-language skills, enhance their critical and creative thinking abilities, and increase their understanding of other cultures. In addition, the ability to communicate in another language provides students with a distinct advantage in a number of careers, both in Canada and internationally.

The primary goal of FSL programs in Ontario is to increase, within realistic and well-defined parameters, a student’s ability to use French effectively. The programs enable students to better understand the stages of language learning and the use of language learning strategies in order to become proficient second-language learners. All programs emphasize the development of listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills through the use of a contextual approach and a variety of authentic resources.



Muskoka Woods Experience
The Muskoka Woods Sports Resort, is a Christian, non-profit sports resort located on beautiful Lake Rosseau, Ontario. In the Muskoka Woods experience,  leadership students from Villanova, as well as the other Catholic high schools, organize, facilitate, and act as cabin leaders for the grade 8 field trip to the resort. The student leaders are an integral component of the Muskoka experience and are chosen to participate based on their leadership skills, maturity, and responsibility. The leaders guide the grade 8’s based on Muskoka’s motto; “You don’t have to be the best, you just have to do your best”. The students learn that it is not essential to be excellent at a sport or activity, but rather promote an active healthy lifestyle through participation and encouraging students to simply try their best.

The Muskoka experience is an excellent opportunity to give our students the opportunity for leadership training, the development of cooperative skills, and to provide all WECDSB grade 8 students, secondary leadership students, and staff with a life-changing, outdoor recreational leadership experience rooted in a Christian culture of support and encouragement.



A balanced mathematics program at the secondary level includes the development of algebraic skills. This curriculum has been designed to equip students with the algebraic skills they need to understand other aspects of mathematics that they are learning, to solve meaningful problems, and to continue to meet with success as they study mathematics in the future. The algebraic skills required in each course have been carefully chosen to support the other topics included in the course. Calculators and other appropriate technology will be used when the primary purpose of a given activity is the development of concepts or the solving of problems, or when situations arise in which computation or symbolic manipulation is of secondary importance.

Grades 9 & 10
The Grade 9 and 10 mathematics program builds on the elementary program, relying on the same fundamental principles on which that program was based. Both are founded on the premise that students learn mathematics most effectively when they have a thorough understanding of mathematical concepts and procedures, and when they build that understanding through an investigative approach, as reflected in the inquiry model of learning. This curriculum is designed to help students build a solid conceptual foundation in mathematics that will enable them to apply their knowledge and skills and further their learning successfully.

Like the elementary curriculum, the secondary curriculum adopts a strong focus on the processes that best enable students to understand mathematical concepts and learn related skills. Attention to the mathematical processes is considered to be essential to a balanced mathematics program. The seven mathematical processes identified in this curriculum are problem solving, reasoning and proving, reflecting, selecting tools and computational strategies, connecting, representing, and communicating. Each of the Grade 9 and 10 mathematics courses includes a set of expectations – referred to in this document as the “mathematical process expectations” – that outline the knowledge and skills involved in these essential processes. The mathematical processes apply to student learning in all areas of a mathematics course.

Grade 11 & 12
The senior mathematics courses build on the Grade 9 and 10 program, relying on the same fundamental principles on which that program was based. Both are founded on the premise that students learn mathematics most effectively when they build a thorough understanding of mathematical concepts and procedures. Such understanding is achieved when mathematical concepts and procedures are introduced through an investigative approach and connected to students’ prior knowledge in meaningful ways. This curriculum is designed to help students prepare for university, college, or the workplace by building a solid conceptual foundation in mathematics that will enable them to apply their knowledge and skills in a variety of ways and further their learning successfully.

An important part of every course in the mathematics program is the process of inquiry, in which students develop methods for exploring new problems or unfamiliar situations. Knowing how to learn mathematics is the underlying expectation that every student in every course needs to achieve. An important part of the inquiry process is that of taking the conditions of a real-world situation and representing them in mathematical form. A mathematical representation can take many different forms – for example, it can be a physical model, a diagram, a graph, a table of values, an equation, or a computer simulation. It is important that students recognize various mathematical representations of given relationships and that they become familiar with increasingly sophisticated representations as they progress through secondary school.


Physical Education

The secondary health and physical education curriculum comprises four Healthy Active Living Education (HALE) courses, one in each of Grades 9 through 12, and three specialized destination courses in Grades 11 and 12.

Students are required to earn one compulsory credit in health and physical education towards their Ontario Secondary School Diploma, and may also take a health and physical education course to meet the Group 2 additional compulsory credit requirement.


Special Education

The Special Education Department at Villanova provides ongoing support as needed for exceptional learners through our Life Skills Program and the Learning Enrichment Program. We also assist in overseeing the Locally Developed/Workplace Program and monitor the progress of exceptional students in the Applied and Academic Programs.

Life Skills Program
The Life Skills Program focuses on developing basic literacy, numeracy, life skills, social skills and vocational skills for students who have developmental disabilities. The goal for these students is to make them as independent and self-sufficient as possible upon their graduation from Secondary school. The life skills student works towards attaining a Certificate of Achievement or the Ontario Secondary School Certificate. Students can take a combination of integrated courses and non-credit Life Skills courses, also known as K courses. Vocational skills are introduced in the in-school World of Work component of the Life Skills Program, followed by a community-based component starting in Grade 11. Educational Assistants provide physical, behavioral, social and academic support in all areas of the Life Skills Program as directed by the Department Head of Special Education and Life Skills Teacher.

Locally Developed/Workplace Program
This program offers courses for students with Individual Education Plans who require modified curriculum. The focus of this program is to improve the students literacy, numeracy, organizational skills and work skills through credited courses. Students are enrolled in a combination of locally developed courses and through their IEP receive modifications in all Open level courses. In Grade 11 &12, students have the opportunity to take Workplace Co-op in order to attain vocational skills to enter the workforce after high school. Academic assistance for these students are provided by our Learning Enrichment Teachers and Educational Assistants in the classroom and/or the Learning Enrichment classroom.

Applied and Academic Program
Students who are taking courses at the Applied or Academic level and have an Individual Education Plan or Accommodation Log may also access the Learning Enrichment Program with our Learning Enrichment Teacher for learning support.


Social Science

Grade 9 & 10 Canadian & World Studies (Geography/ History/Civics)
The Canadian and world studies program offers compulsory courses in geography, history, and civics (politics) in Grades 9 and 10. Students must take one of the Grade 9 geography courses (Issues in Canadian Geography), and one of the Grade 10 history courses (Canadian History since World War I). The Grade 10 course Civics and Citizenship is a half-credit compulsory course.

The Grade 9 and 10 Canadian and world studies program has been designed to ensure continuity with Grade 7 and 8 history and geography. Student learning in Grades 7 and 8 – including that related to content, the inquiry processes, and the concepts of disciplinary thinking – prepare students for the Grade 9 and 10 Canadian and world studies program. Likewise, the courses in this document provide a strong foundation for further study, not only in geography, history, and politics but also in economics and law, the other subjects in the Grade 11 and 12 Canadian and world studies program.

Grade 11 & 12  Canadian and World Studies (Geography, History, Law, and Politics)
The Canadian and world studies program offers a number of optional courses in all five of the subject areas – economics, geography, history, law, and politics – in Grades 11 and 12. These courses build on the foundation of learning – including learning related to the application of inquiry processes and the concepts of disciplinary thinking – in social studies, history, and geography in Grades 1–8 and Canadian and world studies in Grades 9 and 10.

Grade 11 & 12 Social Science and Humanities
The discipline of social sciences and humanities in the Ontario secondary school curriculum offers courses that systematically explore the ways in which individuals influence and are influenced by families, communities, cultures, institutions, and societies, and by ideas, norms, and values.

Social sciences and humanities courses provide students with essential knowledge and transferable skills that are applicable in various areas of their lives – in their personal and family lives as well as in their post-secondary studies and in the workplace. Individual courses provide students with a foundation for a variety of possible post-secondary destinations: positions in the retail and service industries; college programs in community services (e.g., early childhood education, child and youth work, and developmental services work), creative endeavors (e.g., the fashion industry, fashion design, garment construction, and food preparation), or business (e.g., human resources); and university programs in fields such as anthropology, business studies, education, environmental studies, family and child studies, food and nutrition sciences, gender studies, health sciences, human resources, philosophy, psychology, religious studies, social work, and sociology.



The overall aim of the secondary science program is to ensure scientific literacy for every secondary school graduate. To better achieve this aim, all courses in the program are designed to focus on science not only as an intellectual pursuit but also as an activity-based enterprise within a social context.

Grade 9 & 10
Courses in the Grade 9 and 10 secondary science curriculum are organized into five strands. The first strand focuses on the essential skills of scientific investigation, and on career exploration. The remaining four strands cover the content areas of science, each focusing on one of the scientific subdisciplines – biology, chemistry, earth and space science, and physics. The content of the Grade 7 and 8 program creates a strong foundation for students entering secondary school science programs. The transition from Grade 8 to Grade 9 is a smooth one because the content strands of the elementary science and technology program are closely aligned with those of the Grade 9 and 10 science program.

Grade 11 & 12
The senior science courses build on the Grade 9 and 10 science program, incorporating the same goals of science and fundamental concepts on which that program was based. Both programs are founded on the premise that students learn science most effectively when they are active participants in their own learning. Such participation is achieved when science concepts and procedures are introduced through an investigative approach and are connected to students’ prior knowledge in meaningful ways.

The Grade 11 and 12 science curriculum is designed to help students prepare for university, college, or the workplace by building a solid conceptual and procedural foundation in science that enables them to apply their knowledge and skills in a variety of ways and successfully further their learning. An important component of every course in the science program is the development of students’ ability to relate science to technology, society, and the environment. Students are encouraged to apply their understanding of science to real-world situations in these areas and to develop knowledge, skills, and attitudes that they will take with them beyond the science classroom.


Technology - Skills for Life

In the Villanova Technology department, our philosophy of learning is hinged upon the motto Skills for Life. We provide the opportunity for students to learn skills that will benefit them in everyday situations, such as preparing nutritious meals for your family, maintaining your vehicle, designing home renovations, completing small home projects, landscape design, and making the most of digital media. Our courses are also designed to enhance post-secondary education through theoretical and practical experiences.

In grade nine, students can start by taking the Exploring Technologies course which introduces all of our technological areas. In grade ten students can choose a specific discipline to focus on, which leads into the senior courses. We also have a Specialist High Skills Major offered in our Communications Technology program.

Our technology department offers six different areas of focus. They include Communication (Digital Media), Construction, Green Industries, Hospitality, Technological Design (Drafting), and Transportation Technology (Automotive). Over the past 10 years, we have had 17 medal winning students that have competed in various competitions such as Ontario Skills, Cardboard Boat Races, and Skills Canada to name a few.


STEM Academy

In order for graduates to succeed in the knowledge economy as it continues to expand, they'll need the competitive advantage that a STEM-based education provides. Science, Technology, Engineering, Math Academy(STEM) education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators. Find out more about the Villanova STEM Academy by clicking here.

Hockey Academy

We now have multiple academies that offer a variety of activities in locations throughout Windsor-Essex, and we have employed numerous skills experts to make sure our students are getting the best training available. Find out more about the Hockey Academy by clicking here.

French Immersion

Learning a second language is beneficial for students. Giving your child the advantages that come with being bilingual not only builds on creative thinking skills but also ensures excellent communication skills to be ready to succeed in today’s competitive workplace. Through our French Immersion Program your child will learn a second language while expanding career opportunities, gaining a deeper understanding of cultures, and thus being a multilingual citizen of the world. Find out more about French Immersion by clicking here.

Specialist High Skills Major Program (SHSM)

The Specialist High Skills Major Program (SHSM) is a ministry approved specialized program that allows students to focus their learning on a specific economic sector while meeting the requirements for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) and assists in their transition from secondary school to apprenticeship training, college, university, or the workplace. To find out more about SHSM programs offered by Villanova click here.

Cooperative Education (COOP)

The Cooperative education, or Co-op, program provides Grade 11 and 12 students with the opportunity to earn High School credits through the completion of a semester-long unpaid work placement.

Co-op programs are designed to meet your individual needs, strengths, interests, and learning styles, preparing you with the knowledge, skills, and experience needed to be successful in the future. To find out more about Co-op programs offered by the WECDSB click here.

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP)

The Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) allows students to explore and work in apprenticeship occupations starting in Grade 11 or Grade 12 through the Cooperative Education program. Students must be at least 16 years of age and have 16 credits towards their Ontario Secondary School Diplomas in order to qualify for the program. To find out more about OYAP programs offered by the WECDSB click here.

To find out more about all of our programs offered at the WECDSB visit the board website here.
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