Forest Hill Collegiate Institute

View From the Hill - Issue 25

Sunday, March 5, 2023

The show of school spirit was fantastic last week! Shout out to the Athletic and Student Councils for all their efforts to host a great Pep Rally and Spirit Week! And thank you to Ms. Sourasis and Mr. Zisis for bringing in Greek Heritage Month by filling the foyer with music and dancing!

March Break is just five days away! Our Cope Council and Prefects are starting the count down on Monday in the foyer where they will be serving up hot chocolate and positive messages at lunch in the foyer! All students are welcome to drop by to receive a positive message and a free hot chocolate!

And on Friday, the last day before the break, the Prefects will host a Pancake Breakfast for all our students and staff! All students are encouraged to head to the cafeteria after 8:30 a.m. to enjoy pancakes with maple syrup and more!

A reminder to parents and guardians that our School Council will be meeting on Tuesday, March 7 at 7:30 p.m. in the library. Hope to see you there. Details and agenda can be found below in the Messages from School Council.

We would also like to take this opportunity to wish all students and families a healthy and relaxing March Break! Our next newsletter will be emailed on March 19.


Yvette Duffy, Principal          Maharukh Kootar, Vice Principal           Jaime Yamashita, Vice Principal

In this issue: 

  1. The Next Two Weeks at a Glance
  2. March is Greek Heritage Month!
  3. Get Your Free Hot Chocolate! – Monday, March 6 @ Lunch
  4. Pancake Breakfast – Friday, March 10 @ 8:30 a.m. – Cafeteria
  5. March Break & Sanctioned School Events
  6. Coffee House – Wednesday, March 22 @ 3:30 p.m.
  7. Parent-Guardian-Teacher Interviews & Other Important Semester 2 Achievement Dates
  8. NEW Date for Commencement – Tuesday, June 27 @ 1 pm
  9. Student Activity Fees – $60 Requested
  10. School Calendar & Vacation Planning 2022/2023 Reminder
  11. TDSB Ukrainian “Laskavo Prosymo” Welcome Fair - Saturday, April 15 - Register Now
  12. March of the Living – Extended Absence Form Required
  13. Sikh Heritage Month – Poster/Video Contest 2023 – Due Wednesday, March 22 @ 4pm
  14. Calling all creatives!  Pride T-Shirt Design Contest – Deadline Thursday, March 23
  15. Messages from Special Education
  16. Messages from Guidance
  17. Message from School Council Chair Tracy Kowal
  18. Trustee Laskin’s Weekly Updates

The Next Two Weeks at a Glance

Keep apprised of what is happening by linking to our school year calendar which is live on our school website landing page.   

March is Greek Heritage Month!

March is Greek Heritage Month at the Toronto District School Board. It is an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the many achievements and contributions of Greek Canadians to Canada, and an occasion to mark and enjoy the history of Greek culture. The theme for this year is based on TDSB priorities:  Joy, Engagement, Belonging. Visit the Greek Heritage Month website to learn about what is happening this month. A few events to consider: 

  • Join TDSB staff and students on Friday, March 24th for a celebration at Floga Restaurant. See this flyer to RSVP. 
  • Or consider joining the Greek Independence Parade on the Danforth on Sunday, March 26th at 1:30 p.m. Meet up at 15 Phin Avenue at 1:00 p.m. 

Get Your Free Hot Chocolate! – Monday, March 6 @ Lunch

Cope Council and Prefects want to kick off the week before the break to send positive messages to students and staff.  A special note is written on each cup that will be given away with our free hot chocolate on Monday, March 6 at lunch in the foyer.  Drop by to get your positive message! 

Thank you to Cope Council and Prefects for all they are doing to spread joy and kindness.  A special thanks to Ms. Homatidis, Ms. McKinnon and Ms. Ng for their support! 

Pancake Breakfast – Friday, March 10 @ 8:30 a.m. – Cafeteria

Given we were unable to host our annual holiday pancake breakfast in December because of the snow, we are happy to announce our Prefects will be serving up free pancakes on Friday, March 10 beginning at 8:30 a.m. to any student who wants one!  Join us in the café to enjoy delicious hot pancakes!  Check out our flyer for more information!

Thank you to Ms. Homatidis and Ms McKinnon for organizing our Prefects to put on this breakfast!  A special thank you as well to all staff who have offered to help supervise the grill and the students!  And – of course – a shout out to all the Prefects who will be cooking up a storm on Friday!  

March Break & Sanctioned School Events

There is only one sanctioned school event running this March Break, i.e. a trip to Spain & France hosted by our Global Languages department. Only students registered in our Language program were invited to attend. All students, parents and guardians involved in this trip attended an in-person information session and have received emails from Ms. Pawlowski, ACL of Global Languages. 

There have been many phone call inquiries about an unsanctioned March Break trips. Apparently, these trips are targeting our grade 12 students and is being promoted as affiliated with our school; however, please know that the school is not involved with any trip other than our Languages trip. We are also receiving phone calls about a semi-formal event. At this time, Forest Hill is not promoting or supervising any semi-formal events. All student events run by Forest Hill will be communicated through our newsletter and/or direct emails to parents and guardians.

Coffee House – Wednesday, March 22 @ 3:30 p.m.

Coffee House is an open mic event, organized by the FHCI Music Directorate. Students of all grades showcase their music talents by performing live in an informal and casual setting. It features a wide variety of music styles and instrumentation and provides a venue for all students to express themselves artistically. It is a free event, with free snacks and drinks! Join us to celebrate our students on Wednesday, March 22 @ 3:30 p.m. Thank you to Music Directorate, Ms. Simas and the Art department for making this happen for our students!

Parent-Guardian-Teacher Interviews & Other Important Semester 2 Achievement Dates

On Thursday, March 30, our staff will host Parent-Guardian-Teacher Interviews in-person.  Information about times and scheduling an interview will be shared after the March Break. Please also note these important Semester 2 dates:

  • Tuesday, April 18 – Last Day of Term 1
  • Tuesday, April 18 – Last Day of Term 1 Grade 10 Civics & Careers
  • Wednesday, April 19 – First Day of Term 2
  • Wednesday, April 19 – First Day of Term 2 Grade 10 Civics & Careers
  • Tuesday, April 25 – Mid-Term Report Cards Distributed Electronically
  • Tuesday, May 2 – Maintain Mark/Full Disclosure Day

NEW Date for Commencement – Tuesday, June 27 @ 1 pm

Please note that the grade 12 Commencement date has shifted to Tuesday, June 27 at 1:00 p.m. This shift in date was made to accommodate religious holidays that may be celebrated by TDSB students. Our Commencement will be held off site at Toronto Pavilion located at 190 Railside Road. More information will be shared directly to our graduating students by our Commencement Committee in the coming months. 

Student Activity Fees – $60 Requested

As of March, only 40% of our student body have paid the requested $60 Student Activity Fee. We collect this fee each year to support costs that are not covered by the Ministry or the Board to allow for a more enriched school experience for our students.  This year our school requested a Student Activity Fee of $60.  Our school activity fee supports the following:  

$30 - Forester Yearbook (colour printed)

$10 - Academic programming (FHCI Photo ID card and student printing costs)

$5 - Athletic programming (teams and Intramural for students)

$15 - Student programming (Student Council, Clubs, Hillstock, nutrition for students in need)

Without these fees, our school will have to begin charging students individual fees to support our co-curricular programming. Link to School Activity Fee 2022/2023 to make the $60 payment if you have not already done so. Thank you for supporting student engagement at Forest Hill. If you have any further questions regarding the Student Activity Fee, please contact the school. 

School Calendar & Vacation Planning 2022/2023 Reminder

The 2022-23 School Calendar is available on the TDSB website. Please link to TDSB Secondary School Calendar 2022/2023 for important dates. An important reminder – vacations are not considered a legitimate absence from instructional days. Every effort should be made to avoid scheduling family vacations during school time. In the event of a missed evaluation due to a family vacation, teachers are not required to provide an alternative form of evaluation and a mark of zero may be assigned. If a student is planning to miss more than five consecutive school days need to complete the extended absence form which can be picked up in the main office. Thank you for your ongoing cooperation. 

TDSB Ukrainian “Laskavo Prosymo” Welcome Fair - Saturday, April 15 - Register Now

All TDSB Ukrainian secondary students and families are welcome to attend the TDSB Ukrainian “Laskavo Prosymo” Welcome Fair scheduled on Saturday, April 15. Please join us to learn about community resources, meet new friends and more! 

The fair will take place at Western Technical-Commercial School located at 125 Evelyn Crescent from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Registration is required using this registration form. Deadline for registration is April 1, 2023.

March of the Living – Extended Absence Form Required

March of the Living is a journey to Poland and Israel to learn about the Jewish community that once flourished in Europe, the tragedy of the Holocaust, and the establishment and survival of the State of Israel. Thank you to Danielle D, Maya S, and Keeley C who joined our staff last week to remind us about what this journey entails.  As this event is organized by a private organization and not the school, students who are planning to participate in the March of the Living must complete the extended absence form which can be picked up in the Main Office and submit this to the appropriate Vice Principal.  

Sikh Heritage Month – Poster/Video Contest 2023 – Due Wednesday, March 22 @ 4pm

Sikh Heritage Month is proudly recognized at the Toronto District School Board during the month of April. As part of the celebrations to mark Sikh Heritage Month, all TDSB students are invited to be creative!  All secondary school students from grades 9 to 12 are invited to submit a short 1 to 2 minute informative video, spoken word, poetry, etc. related to the theme Kes. Deadline:  All entries must be submitted on or before Wednesday, March 22, 2023 by 4:00 pm. Full details about the theme, eligibility and how to submit are available here. Should further information be required, please contact or

Calling all creatives!  Pride T-Shirt Design Contest – Deadline Thursday, March 23

Pride Month 2023 is just around the corner and TDSB Pride Planning Committee is holding a T-Shirt Design Competition. Open to all TDSB students, two unique designs that celebrate 2SLGBTQ+ Pride will be selected. The winning designs will be printed on hundreds of TDSB Pride 2023 T-shirts and worn by all members of the TDSB contingent during 2023 Pride Parade in June. The TDSB Pride 2023 T-shirt Design Competition is open to all ages. Deadline for design submissions is Thursday, March 23, 2023 at 11:59 p.m.  The criteria for design submissions are:

  • May be hand-drawn OR digital
  • May be grey-scale OR multi-coloured
  • Must incorporate the TDSB logo OR leave enough space for logo to be added
  • Must be original and respectful
  • Everything else is up to the designer!

For more information and to submit an entry, please email attaching an image of the design (e.g., jpeg, gif, png, pdf, etc.). Be sure to include your full name, grade, and school, as well as the name of a staff member for communication.

Messages from Special Education

TDSB Virtual Community Fair: Let’s Talk about Programs and Services for Children With Special or Complex Needs

All TDSB families of students with special and complex needs are invited to meet with Community Partners to discuss important transition planning that needs to occur while in high school to prepare for graduation, adult programs, and plan for life after high school. Guests include Developmental Services Ontario (DSO), Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) and Passport Funds. 

When:  Monday March 6, 2023 at 9:30 am or Monday March 27, 2023 at 5:30 pm

Where:  Virtual Zoom Meeting

Zoom Link:

Meeting ID: 983 6737 8226 and Passcode: 969515

This is Part 1 of a 2-Part Series. The second part in this series will be hosted April 17th and repeated on April 24th. For more information, email

Messages from Guidance

Course Selection 2023/2024 – myBlueprint – Will Remain Open until Monday, March 6 @ 9:00 am

As of Friday end of day, approximately 100 students have not submitted their Course Selection for September 2023. 

Students who have not submitted their course selection were sent a personal email reminder this weekend to complete this task by Monday, March 6 at 9:00 a.m. If students require support with this task, they are encouraged to book an appointment with their Guidance Counsellor using this appointment form.  Please note that a parent or guardian must approve the student course selection for the process to be complete.  Students will have another opportunity to make changes to their courses submitted later in the Spring.

Submission of Course Selections will influence which classes will be offered in the 2023/2024 school year. This data will also be used for our staffing process which begins right after the March Break. Therefore, it is imperative for students to indicate their course preferences now to ensure that the course they are interested in will more likely run in 2023/2024. 

Course Selection 2023/2024 – For Graduating Students

A reminder that graduating students are required to complete myBlueprint for 2023/2024 and to indicate “Not Returning” by Monday, March 6 at 9:00 a.m.  Instructions were sent to graduating students last Friday afternoon and a reminder email was sent on the weekend. 

Scholarship Opportunity – Ontario Public School Board’s Association - $1000

The Public Property Assessment Network Scholarship of $1,000 is being awarded through the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association to one recipient. Scholarship recipients are students of strong character, who care deeply about their communities and furthering their own learning.  If you would like to learn more about the selection criteria, link to this flyer

Scholarship Opportunity – Know Your Worth

The Know Your Worth Sub-Committee, a section of the African Heritage Month Planning Committee, is committed to encouraging and supporting graduating students of African heritage to further their post-secondary education.  The 2022-2023 Know Your Worth Scholarship will offer three financial awards to graduating students valued at $2,000 each:

  • Kujichagulia Academic Award - Due Friday, May 12, 2023, @ 11:59pm
    • All students must have an 80% average t apply
  • Kuumba Creative Award - Due Friday April 28, 2023, @ 11:59pm 
    • Demnstrates strong creative abilities
  • Umoja Leadership Award - Due Friday April 21, 2023, @11:59pm
    • Demnstrates leadership skills with the ambition to aid in the social progression of their community

All interested applicants, please link to 2022-2023 KYW Scholarship Information.

Hearts & Minds Newsletter

The TDSB Psychology Department is pleased to share the February TDSB Hearts & Minds Newsletter.  There is much valuable information in this newsletter to support youth mental health and more.  Please take a moment to review.  

Free Online Tutoring Services for TDSB Students

The TDSB has partnered with the following two online tutoring agencies to support TDSB students:

  • Paper, a high-quality on-demand tutoring service for all subjects and all grades. Students can upload essays and lab reports. Tutors review and provide detailed feedback on style, grammar, plagiarism, and more.  To register link to Paper Sign Up
  • Brainfuse: is an effective live, online tutoring in all subjects and grades. This service offers both live tutoring, as well as asynchronous support for students to submit their work for feedback.  To register link to: Brainfuse Register.

Note: the TDSB is not operating Paper or Brainfuse tutoring services, which means that TDSB staff will not be present during tutoring sessions. During registration, use your child’s TDSB credentials (name, TDSB email address, etc.) to ensure that you are not charged for tutoring services. Once registered, a student can start tutoring immediately.  If you have questions about these services, please link to the inquiry pages as follows for Paper or Brainfuse.

Thank you to Ms. Ng and Mr. Oosterhoff for their support of our students!

Message from School Council – Chair Tracy Kowal

School Council Meeting – Tuesday, March 7 @ 7:30 p.m. – Save the Date

Our next School Council Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, March 7 at 7:30 p.m. in the school library.  Link to the agenda to find out what we will be discussion.  RSVP to our Chair Tracy Kowal at  Looking forward to seeing you there. 

Trustee Laskin’s Weekly Updates

Learn more about upcoming events and keep informed by linking to Trustee Laskin's Weekly Newsletter

Land Acknowledgement: We, the students and staff of Forest Hill Collegiate Institute, acknowledge that we are hosted on the lands of the Mississaugas of the Anishinaabe, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, and the Wendat. We also recognize the enduring presence of all First Nations, Métis, and the Inuit peoples.