Community Connections

Community Connections is a series of speakers for parents, guardians and other caregivers sponsored and organized by the School Council.  Community Connections events are held on the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m. or later in the OTHS theater.  With the aid of experts in the field, we discuss and learn about issues that evolve as young people and their families go through the teen years. It allows parents and caregivers to build a network of support in the pursuit of raising healthy, responsible, and resilient teens.

 There is an email reminder list so be sure to add you name to the list at the first meeting you attend.

Refreshments are served before and after each talk so please feel free to stay and mingle with other parents of teens and share your experiences.

2017/18 Schedule

Tuesday October 3rd 

Information Evening

Please join us on Tuesday October 3rd, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in the OTHS Theatre/Library for our first Community Connections evening of the school year. Two sessions will run concurrently and you can elect the most relevant one to attend:

Session Option 1: Targeting Grade 9/10 Families and ‘New to OT’ Families

Topic: Navigating High School and beyond with the OT Guidance Counsellors

We will be covering the following information:

  1. Introduction to our Counsellors and their role in your student’s schooling.

  2. Answers to Frequently Asked Questions including but not limited to: Community Involvement Hours, MyBlueprint, AP Programming, Course Selection.

  3. Post-Secondary Pathway Planning including: upcoming events, processes and scholarships. What are colleges/universities looking for and how to support your child through this process.

All families are welcome in this session but the information will be particularly useful for grade 9 and 10 students, new families to the province or new students to OTHS.

Session Option 2: Targeting Grade 11/12 Families

Topic: Pathways to College and University as well as Scholarships and Admissions

In this session the Guidance Department will provide an overview of the application process for colleges and universities, an introduction to the application process for Ontario and Canadian schools, along with key dates for college and university fairs, and application deadlines.  Designed for families with students in senior grades specifically, but this session is open to all members of the OT Community.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER for this Community Connections Evening (either session) October 3, 2017.

We hope to see you there!

Tuesday November 7th

Dr. Clinton (guest speaker) - Understanding the Adolescent Brain

Over the past decade neuroscience has finally been able to shed light on why teenagers do the things they do!  This presentation will explore what has been learned about brain development and how the environment and experience plays a key role in this development.  Risk taking, novelty seeking, and risk of substance abuse will be explored.  Over the course of 90 minutes, Dr. Clinton will share success stories from her practice, followed by a Q&A.  

An email will follow closer to the date with a link for registration.

Tuesday December 5th


At our 3rd Community Connections evening of the year, we look forward to introducing you to a panel of professionals who offer services to assist your students at the school or community level. The evening will be divided into two presentations and parents/guardians will have the opportunity to hear from each panel member related to his/her role and some specifics around the situations they often deal with in their role.

An extensive Q&A will drive the topics for a large portion of the evening, but it is likely topics of discussion will include:

  • Common struggles with our kids related to anxiety, resiliency, stress
  • Effective strategies to support our students.
  • The realities facing our Oakville teens as it relates to drugs, alcohol and addictions
  • What to watch for, the ‘lingo’ being used and how to support our students as it relates to the prevalence of drugs today.
  • Insight around bullying and the impact of social media

The panel will include:

  1. Constable Ric Judson, High School Liaison Officer, HRP
  2. Deidre Staduhar, School Social Worker, HDSB
  3. Jennifer Speers, Youth Program Manager from ADAPT
  4. Leeanne Fewkes, Safe Schools Social Worker, HDSB
  5. Chantelle Shepperd, Mental Health and Addictions Nurse, LHINS

We will begin the evening at 7:15. Hope to see you there!


Tuesday January 23rd

Supporting the Course Selection Process

Join us for an informative evening dealing with the OT course selection process, high school and post secondary planning, hosted by OT's Guidance Counselors.  There will be 3 sessions:

Transition from grade 9 to 10 @ 7 pm in the Theater
Transition from grade 10 to 11 @ 7 pm in the Library
Transition from grade 11 to 12 @ 8 pm in the Theater

Tuesday April 3rd 

Dr. Meg Popovic

Stillness in the Storm
Please join us on Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018 at 7:30 p.m. @ OTHS (specific location in the school TBD) for the 5th Community Connections evening of the school year.

Guest speaker, Dr. Meg Popovic will be presenting her keynote "Stillness in the Storm - a conversation about anxiety, emotional health and our kids."

Dr. Popovic addresses how parents can provide the love and empathy their kids need during challenging times while encouraging the independence required for their personal social and psychological development. By engaging in this conversation, parents will:
  • Cultivate an understanding of how a child’s emotional state impacts him/her, the parent, and the family home
  • Learn communication strategies to strengthen their connection with and ability to support their children in times of anxiety and emotional turbulence
  • Be encouraged to become “comfortable with the uncomfortable” in the journey of parenthood
  • Discuss when to jump-in and when to hold-back, always with the intention of 'being there' for their children
  • Build community through compassionate conversation to remove the social stigma around Mental Health
The evening will be a concluded with a Q & A. 

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER for this Community Connections Evening.
We hope to see you there!
Tuesday May 1st