Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School
Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School (French: École secondaire Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau, commonly known as PETHS, PET, or Trudeau) is a public, bilingual English and French-immersion secondary school in Markham, Ontario. It was named in honour of the 15th Prime Minister of Canada, the Right Honourable Pierre Elliott Trudeau.
As part of the York Region District School Board, Trudeau primarily serves students who reside in northern Unionville, which include the communities of Cachet, Angus Glen, and Berczy Village. Trudeau also serves students in the French-immersion program who reside in the communities of Stouffville and most of the Town of Markham.
The colours of Trudeau are based on the four colours found on the native medicine wheel: white, yellow, red and black. The students of Trudeau are collectively known as the Trudeau Trailblazers. The name trailblazers is an homage to Pierre Elliott Trudeau himself and his "trailblazing" attitude in Canadian and global politics. Trudeau's athletic mascot is known as The Blazer.
Strive Higher, Soar Further is the school's motto which is featured on the school's crest. The crest, titled The Spark, features a stylized abstract representation of energy and creativity.
On March 30, 2008, Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School was ranked no. 5 by the Fraser Institute in the 2008 Ontario Secondary School Report Card. PETHS achieved a score of 9.8/10 while the top 4 schools tied with a score of 10/10. The school has the highest ranking among all public schools in Ontario.
Initially called the "Unnamed Secondary School in North Markham", construction of Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School began in the summer of 2001. It was built in the Berczy Village community on Bur Oak Avenue, just east of Kennedy Road and south of Major Mackenzie Drive. It was officially opened in the fall of 2002 to students in Grades 9 and 10, most of which were transferred from nearby Markville Secondary School. The school's first principal and vice-principal were Cheryl Dubeau and Debra Conrad-Knight, respectively. Its current principal is Linda Balaishis, with Virginia Bregg and Joe Mancuso being the Vice Principals.
Trudeau boasted an enrollment of approximately 500 students and had about 50 staff members in its inaugural year. In the subsequent school year, 2003–2004, Trudeau's enrollment grew to over 730 with the addition of Grade 11. Its staff members grew to over 60.
In its third functioning year, 2004–2005, Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School grew to over 1000 students in Grades 9 to 12, and had over 100 staff members. Robert Hart became an additional vice-principal at Trudeau. This school year also saw Trudeau's first graduating class in the spring.
Having originally been destined to become an IB school, PETHS is currently trying to enhance its AP program to cover Sciences, Maths and French in addition to its English program. PETHS has demonstrated an extremely academic student body which has led them to win numerous awards and scholarships.
Battle of the Bands This music event was created for Trudeau student-made bands and the Invitational Battle of the Bands (iBob) was created for student bands from other high schools across the area. They are both hosted at Trudeau and organized by Trudeau's Music Council. Bands compete for prizes, which often includes free recording time at a local studio.
Blazers' Bash This is Trudeau's annual spirit day which is held around May and is organized by the Student Activities Council (SAC). It is an outdoor event with a "carnival" atmosphere involving inflatable attractions, food and beverage, as well as the famous dunk tank where students have the opportunity to dunk voluntary teachers or students in a tank of water. Student Council is currently investigating replacing the event with another for the 2007-2008 school year due to low attendance.
Cabaret The school's annual talent show, where students and staff alike are able to showcase their many talents. The event is organized by the Trudeau Theatrics Society and is held around early December.
Dances Every year in mid November a Dance is held, and a second dance usually occurs in April.
Drama Mosaics A showcase of drama productions performed by the drama classes usually at the end of every semester.
Movie Night In November 2007 a movie night was held at the school with the movie "Transformers" being the feature presentation.
Pierre Elliott Trudeau's Birthday A celebration of Trudeau's birthday, celebrated on 18 October. Festivities include cake-eating, a dragon dance, and planting of a rosebush in front of the school as well as trivia on the Life of Trudeau.
Sears Ontario Drama Festival An annual theatrical showcase event in which several schools across Ontario compete in. Trudeau has a reputation for hosting the district showcase and has had great success at the festival, advancing to the Regional Showcase at Hart House theater at the University of Toronto five times in the past six competitions.
The Great Theatre of the World (2003)
The Calendar Effect (2004)
The Arabian Nights (2005)
Dragon of the Winds (2006)
Stories Gone Wilde (2007)
Spirit Day Fridays Spirit Day activities are planned at the end of the week. In addition every year Spirit Week happens the week before March Break. The 2008 themes were Beach Day, Superhero Day, Toga Day and Trudeau in the Future day, where students dressed up in their future profession's attire.
Trudeaumania This would be the school's annual spirit day for Grade 9 students held by the Student Council, where they head to Green Acres to participate in several events rallying on teamwork, initiative and participation.
Winter and Spring Music Nights A showcase of musical performances from the school's many musical bands, orchestra, ensembles, and classes. Music Nights' musicians perform just before the Christmas holidays and once in mid-spring.
The following elementary schools are part of Trudeau's family of schools:
Ashton Meadows Public School
Castlemore Public School
Stonebridge Public School
The following elementary schools are part of Trudeau's French-immersion family of schools:
Franklin Street Public School
Glad Park Public School (Stouffville)