Assemblies and Conferences

At Ursula Franklin Academy we have a rich history of student-organized and student-led assemblies and conferences. These events are a large part of our specialized school planning and are what sets us aside from other secondary experiences. UFA has hosted full-school conferences and/or assemblies related to mental health, African Heritage, multiculturalism, anti- oppression, post-secondary pursuits, and many more. Past key note speakers have included Romeo Dallaire, Stephen Lewis, Ursula Franklin, and Marina Nemat to name just a few. Assemblies and conferences are a part of our curriculum, and as such all students are expected to fully participate. Parental support in this regard is greatly appreciated.

Assessment and Evaluation

General Information Each student will receive a grade out of 100% for each course. This grade will be comprised of a 70% term mark, based on evaluations conducted throughout the course and a 30% culminating or summative mark in the form of an essay, exam, performance (or combination of the three) administered in May and June. Enriched Wednesday Program marks account for 10% of the term mark and are applied to all courses.

Marks will be reported using either achievement chart categories or strands from the curriculum document for the course.

Students will be evaluated on course expectations found in the curriculum documents.

Learning habits such as participation, neatness, attendance (unless a part of the expectations of a course) will be reported on using the Learning Skills section of the Ontario Report Card.

The school’s full Assessment and Evaluation Policy can be found on our website under Academics.

Community Service Hours

Students are required to perform 40 hours of community service as a requirement of graduation. Eligible hours must take place no sooner than the summer before Grade 9. Any hours prior to this time are ineligible. Full-time UFA students with exceptional service hours are eligible for consideration of the Lieutenant Governor’s Award in Grade 12. Students need their hours verified by a supervisor using the Community Involvement Form to record their service hours.

Community Involvement

Credit Rescue Day and R-Day

Credit Rescue Day is held on one of the final exam days of the year.  Students who have been identified by their teachers as not having met course expectations to earn the credit, but are close, are invited in for the day to complete specific credit rescue packages, with the goal of earning the credit.  Typically marks need to be between 44 and 49 for inclusion in the credit rescue program.  Students who earn below this threshold will need to either upgrade their mark at summer school, or retake the credit.
Review Day or R-Day is held the last week of June.  Students attend school on R-Day and follow a special schedule of all 8 classes. Teachers will review the exam and/or culminating evaluations and students will be told their final course marks.  Report Cards will follow by mail in early July.

EQAO & Secondary School

In secondary school students are required to participate in 2 mandatory evaluations administered by the school on behalf of the Education Quality and Accountability Office, (EQAO) – the EQAO Assessment of Mathematics in Grade 9; and the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) in Grade 10.

EQAO Math The EQAO Grade 9 Math evaluation takes place at the end of the school year, either during M-Week or during exams.  The TDSB has designated a portion of the EQAO Math evaluation as 10% of the 30% math culminating or summative mark.  As such, all students must write the assessment.

During class time students will be introduced to the format of the evaluation, and will be given support resources for their preparation.

EQAO Literacy The OSSLT takes place toward the end of March or early April annually.  Students across the province write the OSSLT on the same day, at the same time.  Typically students write the test when in Grade 10.  Students must pass the test in order to graduate, and as such the test is mandatory.

The writing and administration of the test requires a full-morning.  Students not writing (i.e. Grade 9, 11 and 12s) are only required to attend school the afternoon on the day of the test.

During English class students will be introduced to the format of the OSSLT evaluation, and will be given support resources for their preparation.  There is also a dedicated Wednesday Session for support.

Extra Help

Students can access extra help from their teachers either before school, at lunch or after school. Teachers will communicate to their students when they are available for extra help.

Students with particular extra-help needs can sign-up for an Extra-Help Session through our Enriched Wednesday Program or through PASS (Peer Tutoring).

Online help for Grade 9 & 10 Math is also available as follows:

Independent Learning Centre

Family Travel and Vacations

Families are asked to schedule travel and family vacations during school holiday times only.  Students who are absent from school due to vacation will not be permitted to rewrite evaluations, nor will due-dates be adjusted to accommodate the absence.  Missed evaluations due to travel or vacation will render a mark of zero.

Final Evaluations Exams and Culminating Activities

In-Class Culminating Activities are final summative assignments, tests, presentations, labs, exams, etc. and begin at the end of April.  The terms “culminating activity” and “summative activity” are used interchangeably. These activities are valued at 30% of the final mark for each class. Often the 30% mark is broken up between an assignment and an exam (i.e. 10% and 20%), but in some courses, particularly at the senior level, one evaluation (i.e. the exam) may account for the full 30% summative or culminating mark.

Culminating tasks can take place during class time, during M-Week, and during the Exam Week.  Students are typically carrying a course load of 6-8 courses, and as such personal organization of expectations related to the culminating activities and tasks is essential for success.

Every student receives an exam schedule which will indicate the date and time of their exams.  Students should arrive at school at least 30 minutes prior to the start of their exam.  Students are not required to be at school on days or parts of days when they do not have a scheduled exam.

Missing a final evaluation, including an exam, can have a serious impact on a student’s final grade.  Students are expected to complete all final or culminating activities and evaluations.  If a medical circumstance prevents a student from fulfilling this expectation, a medical note must be provided to the school.  The note must indicate that the student was unable to write the evaluation or exam due to the medical issue.

Full-Time Attendance Status

All students attending UFA are expected to maintain a full-time enrolment status.  This means a student must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 courses at UFA.


Graduation takes place at the end of June.  Parents, guardians, family and friends are all welcome at Graduation.  In addition to honouring our graduates, school as well as subject specific awards will be presented.  Students in full-time attendance at UFA are eligible for consideration of awards.  More information regarding awards can be found on our website under Academics.

All Grade 12 students meet in April to finalize graduation details.  Students will be loaned a graduation gown, but will need to purchase a cap for $5.00, which they will keep.  Students must have earned 30 credits (18 compulsory, 12 optional), have passed the OSSLT, and have performed 40 hours of community service to be eligible for graduation.  All community service hours must be handed in by the end of April in order for graduation requirements to be processed in a timely way.

Graduates and their guest are invited to a reception in the main hallway immediately following the graduation ceremony.

Health Considerations

Ryan’s Law and Scent Awareness In consideration to those with asthma, odour sensitivities and/or allergies, students, staff, parents and guardians are asked to refrain from wearing or using products with overt scents at school.

Sabrina’s Law In consideration to those with life-threatening anaphylaxis and/or allergies students, staff, parents and guardians are asked to refrain from bringing peanuts or nuts to school for lunch, snacks or school events involving food.

Concussion Protocol The TDSB, in response to Ministry of Education direction, has created a policy and protocol to ensure students suffering from a concussion return to learn, and return to play in a progressive and supervised way. There is a role for the physician, parents/guardians, students, teachers, and administration. It is important that parents/guardians inform the school immediately if their child has sustained a head injury. Parents/guardians can expect to receive support, information, and various forms to ensure a student does not return to full capacity until they are symptom free.

Modified Week or M-Week

M-Week takes place in December, and again in June.  The school day is modified to allow for longer classes.  This allows for specific curriculum expectations or evaluations to take place.  For example, lab experiments, presentations, teacher-student conferences, excursions, or evaluations often take place during an M-Week class.  Students have 2 classes per day during M-Week, rather than the typical 4 classes.  Students will begin their first class of the day at either 8:45 or 9:55, depending on specific class expectations.  Likewise, students will end their day at either 2:30 or 3:25, depending on specific class expectations.  Teachers will share M-Week expectations with students prior to M-Week beginning, and students will be given a blank schedule to record such expectations.

M-Week is often stressful for students, with many projects, assignments, and evaluations to juggle.  Talk with your child to make sure they know what is expected of them and that they know where they need to be, and when.  Specific M-Week classes are listed on the calendar (i.e. M1 A/C indicates M-Week Schedule, Class A is Period 1, and Class C is Period 2).

Typical M-Week Day

Period 1
          8:45 – 9:40 – Additional time for presentations and student teacher meetings to be scheduled for individuals, groups, and whole classes as appropriate for the specific course.

Nut Break
      9:40 – 9:55

Period 1
          9:55 – 11:45 – Presentations and student teacher meetings will be scheduled for individuals, groups, and whole classes.

11:45 – 12:40

Period 2
          12:40 – 2:30 – Presentations and student teacher meetings will be scheduled for individuals, groups, and whole classes.

Period 2          2:30 – 3:25 – Additional time for presentations and student teacher meetings to be scheduled for individuals, groups, and whole classes as appropriate for the specific course.

Parent Concern Protocol

Parents, including guardians or any caregiver with recognized responsibility for the care of a student with a school-related problem or issue (concern) are asked to make direct contact with their students’ teacher to discuss and resolve any academic concerns.  If matters are not resolved the next step is to contact the Guidance department.  If matters are not resolved by the Guidance department the next step is to contact the Vice-Principal.

Matters of student well being and medical concerns should be communicated to one of  our Guidance Counsellors or the Vice-Principal.

Please reference:

Robin Pilkey Parent Concern Protocol
2021-22 R_ PILKEY Parent Concern Protocol AODA (1)

TDSB Operational Procedure PR505 Parent Concern Protocol
TDSB PR505 Parent Concern Protocol

Student Absences

Parents are asked to call the school during regular office hours, or leave a detailed voice mail after hours, if a child is or will be absent.  We will need the child’s name, parent name, date of absence and reason for absence (i.e. illness, medical appointment etc.)  Parents are requested to schedule appointments outside of school hours, wherever possible.

Students who are unexpectedly absent for a legitimate reason and miss an evaluation are required, as per school policy, to make-up the missed evaluation the day the student returns.  When a student is aware in advance that s/he will be missing a class because of a sporting event, field trip etc. they should inform their teacher, and make arrangements to make up missed work or evaluations in advance of the absence or at a time at the discretion of the teacher.


School begins at 10:15 a.m. and ends at 3:06 p.m. every Wednesday.  There are two types of Wednesdays – Wednesday Sessions and Condensed Wednesdays.

Wednesday Sessions
Wednesday Sessions are designated on the calendar via the letter “W”, followed by the Unit and Class designation (i.e. W1.2 refers to Wednesday, Unit 1, Class 2).  Each Unit has between 3 to 5 classes.  There are 6 Units over the course of the year.

Condensed Wednesdays
Condensed Wednesdays occur on short weeks (i.e. weeks where there is a holiday or PA Day) and are designated on the calendar via the letter “C”, followed by the Day (i.e. C3 refers to Condensed Day 3). Students will attend their scheduled classes of the Condensed Day.

Grade 9 students will be shown how to enroll in Wednesday Sessions in Early September as part of the BTT class, and will be given first access to Unit 1 Sessions.