Cultural awareness was at the forefront at St. Catherine Catholic Elementary School in Peterborough Wednesday, May 4, as the school hosted a cultural symposium as part of Catholic Education Week.

Entitled ‘Celebrating our Canadian Mosaic,’ the goal of the day was to deepen awareness about the cultural diversity in our communities and to promote the inclusion of all people within the school, city and our global community.

Catholic education is designed to offer an inclusive learning environment, fostering spirituality to produce top academic and community-minded graduates.

“The goal of the day is to raise cultural awareness and experience and knowledge for our local, provincial, national and global cultures,” said St. Catherine CES teacher and event organizer Chantal Bouillon.

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The day began with an impressive opening ceremony that brought out dignitaries such as Peterborough Mayor Daryl Bennett and PVNC Director of Education Barbara McMorrow and included an official welcome to Mississauga Territory with an opening First Nation drumming song, followed by dance forms from around the world and special presentations to community members making significant contributions to international causes.

The event then broke out into sessions in the classrooms where students got to learn about cultures from around the world, hear accounts from recently settled refugees and explore culture through dance and song.