Accepting Schools Expert Panel Members
June 13, 2012
The Accepting Schools Act will make every school safer while ensuring all students have the support they need to grow and reach their full potential.
Today marked the first meeting of the Accepting Schools Expert Panel. The Panel will bring together experts to identify and advise on the development of resources and practices that promote a positive school climate, equity and inclusive education, as well as bullying prevention and early intervention.
Dr. Bruce Ferguson (co-chair) is the director of the Community Health Systems Resource Group at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids). He is also a Professor of Psychiatry, Psychology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto and has been a visiting scientist at the Biological Psychiatry Branch of the National Institute of Mental Health in the United States. Dr. Ferguson has created the Community Health Systems Resource Group to promote and facilitate integration and collaboration in service delivery, and advocate for the implementation of evidence-based interventions and standardized outcome measurement in health, mental health, social services and education.
Mary Gordon (co-chair) is the founder and president of Roots of Empathy, and is recognized internationally as an award-winning social entrepreneur, educator, author, child advocate and parenting expert. Ms. Gordon has presented on early childhood development to gatherings organized by the World Health Organization and the United Nations. Ms. Gordon is also the founder of Canada's first and largest school-based Parenting and Family Literacy Centre, which she initiated in 1981. The Ontario government adopted her model and has over 150 centres in elementary schools across the province. In 2006, Ms. Gordon was awarded the Order of Canada for her many contributions to education.
Leena K. Augimeri, Ph.D., is the director of Scientific and Program Development and Centre for Children Committing Offences at the Child Development Institute and Adjunct Professor at the University of Toronto. For the past 26 years, this scientist practitioner's work has focused on the development of a comprehensive crime prevention model for young children engaged in aggressive and antisocial behaviour. She is a noted author, consultant, scientist and presenter responsible for all national and international development activities pertaining to SNAP® and young children in conflict with the law. Dr. Augimeri is a fellow of the Academy of Experimental Criminology and the recipient of the Child Welfare League of Canada's inaugural Outstanding Achievement Research and Evaluation award.
Dr. Lise Bisnaire is the director of Autism at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), associate investigator at the CHEO Research Institute and Clinical Professor of Psychology at the University of Ottawa. Prior to her current role, Dr. Bisnaire was Clinical Director of Inpatient Psychiatry and Professional Practice Leader for Psychology at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario for 12 years. Dr. Bisnaire has a wealth of experience as a service provider, clinical professor and researcher. She is internationally recognized for her work on assessing mental health outcomes for children and youth. Dr. Bisnaire holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Ottawa.
Harold Braithwaite has served as department head, vice-principal and principal with the Halton Board, as well as superintendent and associate director with the Toronto board of education. His extensive career culminated in his promotion to Director of Education for the Peel District School Board in 1994, a position he held until 2002 when he retired. Throughout his career, Mr. Brathwaite has been a vocal champion for public education, issues of equity, and building capacity in communities. He has received many awards including the Harry Jerome Award, the Urban Alliance on Race Relations Award, the McMaster Distinguished Award, the U of T Arbor Award, and the Order of Ontario. Mr. Braithwaite is currently the Executive Director of the Retired Teachers of Ontario.
Joan Cronin is a member of the Grey Sisters of Immaculate Conception and the executive director of the Ontario Institute for Catholic Education, which serves as a centre of dialogue for students, parents, teachers, principals, senior administrators and Catholic bishops in the Ontario English Catholic education community.
Dr. Jean Clinton is an infant, child and adolescent psychiatrist, associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neuroscience at McMaster University and Children's Hospital. She holds associate appointments in the Department of Family Medicine, the Department of Child Psychiatry at the University of Toronto and the Hospital for Sick Children. She is an associate member of the Offord Centre for Child Studies, leading the provincial primary care education strategy for an enhanced 18-month well-baby visit program. Dr. Clinton has been a consultant to child welfare and children's mental health programs for 25 years. Her skill as a knowledge translator of brain development in infancy and the adolescent years is frequently called upon and she speaks with teachers, parents the legal profession and many others throughout North America.
Debbie Douglas is the executive director of the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI). Through her work at OCASI, Ms. Douglas has highlighted issues of sexual orientation within the immigration system and promoted the creation of safe, welcoming spaces within settlement and integration programs and services. Ms. Douglas has also worked with community-based service agencies on organizational development and change, including policy and procedures development. Ms. Douglas currently sits on the management board of CERIS – The Ontario Metropolis Centre, and co-chairs the national working group on immigration and settlement at the Canadian Council for Refugees.
Dr. Dawn Harvard is the president of the Ontario Native Women's Association and a professor in the Aboriginal and World Indigenous Studies Masters of Education Program at Queen's University. In 2011, Dr. Harvard earned a Ph.D. in education from the University of Western Ontario and is currently an adjunct professor there. Dr. Harvard's research focuses on addressing achievement gaps and fostering academic success for Aboriginal students.
Luisa Cangelosi is a principal of Marshall McLuhan Catholic Secondary School. She began teaching French, Italian and Religion at St. Thomas Aquinas Secondary in 1984 with the Dufferin-Peel Catholic School Board. After taking some time off to spend time with her children, Luisa returned to teaching in 1991 at Marian Academy in the Toronto Catholic District School Board. After teaching ESL, she became Head of the French and International Languages department. Luisa has also worked as a teacher librarian, and vice-principal.
Dr. Peter Jaffe is a professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Western Ontario and the academic director of the Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children. Dr. Jaffe is also the director emeritus for the Centre for Children and Families in the Justice System. Dr. Jaffe has worked in the community as a psychologist specializing in child abuse and domestic violence. He is also a trustee with the Thames Valley District School Board. He has been actively involved with trustee, teacher and parent groups in Ontario to raise awareness about the impact of media violence on child development. He has also served on many board committees and has provided leadership in the development of violence prevention programs within the school system.
Dr. Alice Pitt is an educational theorist and the dean of the Faculty of Education at York University. Dr. Pitt has been a member of the Faculty of Education at York since 1995 and served as its associate dean from 2002 to 2007. As associate dean, Pitt led curriculum renewal efforts in the pre-service program, as well as the design of experiential components, including the expansion of partnerships with schools and community organizations. Dr. Pitt, holds a Ph.D. in education from the University of Toronto, with specializations in curriculum theory, critical/feminist pedagogy, and cultural studies in education. She has been published widely in these fields, as well as in the areas of teacher education.
Bill Tucker is the director of education at Thames Valley District School Board. Prior to this, Mr. Tucker held a supervisory officer position in the areas of special education and school and community services and served as the superintendent of Human Resource Services. He was also a principal at several public schools in London and St. Thomas. Mr. Tucker has written and presented to school boards across Canada in the areas of domestic and school-based anti-violence programs and special education. He has served on the Developmental Disabilities Division Advisory Committee at the University of Western Ontario, served as a board of education representative for London Children's Connection and has been a Board member of the London and Middlesex Children's Aid Society. Mr. Tucker is currently the 2012 United Way Cabinet Chair for London and Middlesex County.
Dr. Tracy Vaillancourt is a Canada research chair in Children's Mental Health and Violence Prevention at the University of Ottawa where she is cross-appointed as a full professor in the Faculty of Education (counselling program) and the School of Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences. Dr. Vaillancourt is also an adjunct professor in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Behaviour at McMaster University, and a core member of the Offord Centre for Child Studies. She received her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia (human development), her post-doctoral diploma from the University of Montreal and Laval University (developmental psychology), and post-doctoral re-specialization in applied child psychology (clinical) from McGill University. Dr. Vaillancourt's research examines the links between aggression and children's mental health functioning, with particular focus on social neuroscience.
John Wilhelm is the chief social worker with Toronto Catholic District School Board. Mr. Wilhelm has been involved in developing partnerships with community children's mental health agencies and health organizations. He has served on the board of directors with not-for-profit organizations including Toronto Catholic Family Services Association. He is also chair of the Minister's Advisory Council on Special Education.