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Message from the Director of Education and Board Chair
Message from the Director of Education and Board Chair

January 15, 2020​

About 3,000 People Atten​d Community Vigil Honouring Flight 752 Victims

On Monday, close to 3,000 people gathered at a vigil in Richmond Hill to honour the victims of Flight 752 in Iran. 

The York Region community, including our students, families and staff members, have been deeply and directly affected by this tragic event and we came together united in our grief and support for one another. 

It was truly moving to see so many people join in sorrow, and in love and care to create space for healing, and to reach out our hearts and hands to those suffering most. We will continue to wrap our arms around our students, families, colleagues and friends who have experienced a loss, and we join them in their grief. 

What we have seen amid the depth of pain and suffering is an outpouring of love, care and kindness. It is what most gives us hope during such a dark and sorrowful time.

We offer our most heartfelt thanks to everyone who attended the vigil. We heard from attendees that the overwhelming support from the community provided an important level of comfort and connection. 

Thank you to the many municipal, provincial and federal representatives who attended the event, including the Mayor of Richmond Hill Dave Barrow, MP for Richmond Hill Majid Jowhari and MPP for Aurora, Oak Ridges and Richmond Hill Michael Parsa. 

We are also grateful to all of our partners who came together to show that we live in a community that cares. Thank you to York Catholic District School Board who joins us in grieving the loss of students. Thank you to the City of Richmond Hill, including Richmond Hill Fire and Emergency Services, and to the Regional Municipality of York, including York Region Transit and York Region Paramedic Services. And thank you to York Regional Police. The partnership and presence of emergency services ensured we were able to provide a safe space for our grieving community to gather. We would also like to express our appreciation for Victims Services of York Region who have been providing much-needed support in our schools and at the event to support those who are grieving. Their services continue to be available for those who need support.

It is no small undertaking to organize the logistics for an event like this, and we want to thank all of our staff members who, without question, stepped away from their regular work to make this event happen. 

We also want to thank our students who have shown tremendous compassion, care and leadership in supporting one another and our grieving families. It has been incredibly moving to see the messages and acts of love our students have shared.  

What we took away from the vigil is that we live in a community that cares, and that we are here to lift each other up during some of our darkest and most difficult times. ​


Sincerely,

Louise Sirisko                   Juanita Nathan      
Director of Education        Board Chair​​ ​​​​​​​​​​     


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