At its regular board meeting on Oct. 26, 2020, our Board of Trustees approved the formal name change of St. Albert Catholic High School to École Secondaire St. Albert Catholic High School.
"The name change was required to reflect the bilingual focus of the school," says Trustee Noreen Radford, Board chair.
"With an increase in students enrolled in high school French Immersion programming in St. Albert for
the upcoming school year, it is important to honour that growth by providing a formal title for SACHS,
the high school that hosts the program."
As is common practice in all school jurisdictions throughout the province, including in our own
Division, schools that provide French Immersion programs within a dual-track focus are formally
named to reflect the bilingual focus of the school. Most recently in our Division, we adopted this
practice in 2015, when Notre Dame Elementary School was renamed to École Notre Dame Elementary
Although the school’s signage will be revised to reflect the new name, no significant re-branding to the school’s corporate identity will be required (e.g. the abbreviation ‘SACHS,’ school logo, sports team name, etc. will remain SACHS).
On June 22, 2020, our Board of Trustees approved a motion to change the name of the school. The Board considered two options and sought the community’s input through a community survey before it made a final decision.
The survey was open from Aug. 25 to Sept. 8, 2020, and had more than 1,600 responses, the majority (87.76%) of which preferred the addition of “École” to the school's name. The survey also included an opportunity for respondents to provide comments. Numerous comments referred to the importance of highlighting the secondary nature of the school in the French name.
French Immersion principals in St. Albert were also consulted relative to the linguistic logistics of the
proposed names, as well as other possibilities that were being considered as a result of community
Based on the responses from the survey, which included community feedback in the form of
comments, as well as consultation with our French Immersion school principals in the community of
St. Albert, the Board recognized that:
- there was a desire from the community to keep the formal name as simple as possible;
- it is important to acknowledge the secondary nature of the school in any French nomenclature;
- when working in a bilingual environment, it is acknowledged that terminology need not
necessarily translate directly; and
- it is important to ensure that the French Immersion nature of the school is honoured, while
ensuring that the name maintains a reasonable “flow.”
As such, the formal name change was approved based on the responses from the community consultation.
Thank you to all those who provided input through the survey.
> > > RELATED: Read more about our Division's French Programming