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Toronto Catholic District School Board


School History And Tradition

In 1967, expropriation notices were delivered to the people who lived on Windermere Avenue and Willard Avenue. Twenty houses on each street were to be taken over to build a new school, James Culnan Catholic School.

The school was opened in September 1970, and the formal opening and blessing took place on June 6, 1971. At first it became a senior school, but in answer to parental demands, James Culnan School opened up to children form junior kindergarten to grade 8.
 
On Sunday, June 11, 1995 James Culnan School celebrated its 25th anniversary. Over 700 people returned on that day, which began with a mass at St. James Church and was followed by a reception and open house at the school. The school was named for James Culnan, a veteran trustee, who was chairman of the Metropolitan Separate School Board's (now Toronto Catholic District School Board) property committee.
 
During the 37 years he served as a school trustee including two terms as Board Chairman. He received no salary and no honorarium. An exemplary Catholic gentleman, he was knighted by the Pope in 1957 in recognition of his efforts on behalf of Catholic schools. He had a vision of acquiring land for Catholic schools and put his energy and negotiating skills into buying farmland cheaply for that purpose.
 
Mr. Culnan died on April 8, 1964 while still active as a trustee. His surviving children and grandchildren were present at the 25th anniversary.