Category Archives: Ridley News

Ridley College Weekend Update

It was a busy weekend for students at Ridley College. There were no classes on Saturday, instead it was a volunteer service day and students participated in various activities to help the community.  Nineteen students joined Ms. Auld and Ms. Kubu at the Short Hills Park for the annual “Trash Bash.”

Kennedy holding a snake that was found in a pile of discarded roof shingles in the Short Hills Park

The Girls and Boys Rugby teams were both away at their respective CAIS tournaments. Each team exhibited excellent effort and showed great promise for the upcoming season.

Ridley College Boys Rugby at Crescent School - CAIS tournament
Ridley College Girls Rugby at CAIS tournament

Congratulations to the Grade 12 drama students and Mr. Sweeney who traveled to Stratford, Ontario on Sunday to participate in the Shakespeare Challenge.  The students placed 3rd out of 115 Ontario schools for their scene from Cymbeline.  They were awarded a trophy and $2,000.00 for their 3rd place finish.

Ridley College Gr. 12 drama students present Cymbeline for the Stratford Shakespeare Challenge

Students also traveled to Toronto to see the stage production of ‘War Horse’ at the Princess of Wales Theatre on Saturday evening and on Sunday forty-five of our students participated in the Conference of Independent Schools’ Music Festival at Roy Thomson Hall.

Ridley College Singers at Conference of Independent Schools Music Festival at Roy Thomson Hall - Toronto

The VEX Robotics team is returning from Anaheim, California today after being away for the World VEX Robotics Championships where they finished 3rd out of 100 teams in the Science Division. Team 1509’s machine programmed by Igal F. with wingman Jon P. finished 6th in the world in the programmer challenge out of 4,800! Congrats!

Ridley College team 1509B in a match at the World VEX Robotics Championships in California

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

An Interview with Mr. Kidd – Ridley’s Newly Appointed Headmaster

Will N. '13 & Andrew P. '13 talking to new Headmaster Mr. Kidd on Skype

Bob Dylan once said “the times they are a changin” and this is the current situation at Ridley. As many of you may already know at the conclusion of this school year our current headmaster Jonathan Leigh will be leaving the school after eight years of headship. When Mr. Leigh first arrived at Ridley it was a very different school. The average staff member had been at the school since the early 80’s, cadets was believed to be on its way out and the new rink was merely another soccer pitch amongst many. Since then there has been a profound shift between age generation, now the average age of a Ridley staff member is thirty nine, the school’s population has increased exponentially and sports programs such as rowing, basketball and hockey have flourished.

In comes Mr. J. Edward Kidd, our newly appointed headmaster who will be taking over for Mr. Leigh starting this September. Awaiting Mr. Kidd are many new challenges that Ridley will have to face in the coming years. In particular the inclusion of the International Baccalaureate program which pending approval will be implemented into the curriculum in the upcoming school year.

Mr. Kidd brings a wealth of experience in the IB programme. At only forty-one years of age he has already worked in several different schools in Canada, Korea and currently the Shanghai American School in China; where he is the head of the Upper School. In his years at SAS he has introduced the IB program with overwhelming success. Upon his arrival at the school in 1998 the school had an overall population of approximately 600 students and since then it has multiplied five fold as it now encroaches 3000. The IB programme has proven beneficial as graduates of the school now find themselves in Ivy League Universities in the United States as well as their British counterparts Cambridge, Oxford, Durham and King’s College London.

Earlier this week we had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Mr. Kidd over Skype and he told us a little about himself and informed us of his admiration for the IB programme as well as his excitement towards joining the Ridley Community.

Mr. Kidd assured us that Ridley’s transition into IB will be a smooth one as the current requirements for a Ridley student already fit the mould of IB. He wished to clear the air of all misconceptions we may have. Anyone who is already comfortable with the demands of the current Ridley schedule will not be too overwhelmed with IB as the inclusion of activities and community service are already implemented into Ridley’s current curriculum. From an academic standpoint the biggest assumption Mr. Kidd believes students are making is that IB is only for elite students. Even the most average of student has found success in the programme and Mr. Kidd has experienced first hand the transformation that students undergo with IB.

Ridley is a school with many deep-rooted traditions, and the time set aside for tradition provides an additional challenge to IB, as a student’s schedule may become more occupied with academics. Mr. Kidd promises that no traditions are to be eliminated immediately but with IB the school will evolve and like cricket and the old boy system before, some traditions may not be able to adapt.

Aside from the International Baccalaureate, Mr. Kidd brings a lot more to the table and he hopes to bring some youthful energy to the position of Headmaster as this will be the first time someone under fifty will hold the position in a couple decades. Along with Mr. Kidd will be his wife Hanna who is also a schoolteacher as well as their three children Jayden, Mia and Ashton. Their entire family is active in the Shanghai American School community as they participate in athletics, community service and many different endeavours beyond the classroom. Mr. Kidd and his family have picked up the language, as they are familiar with both Korean and Mandarin.

Mr. Kidd and his family are truly excited to join Ridley and he believes that it is an outstanding institution and cannot wait to be a part of it. When asked what sold him and his family on Ridley he quickly answered, “The campus, the architecture, the fields, it is all just magnificent.” He knew it was the place for him.

We look forward to Mr. Kidd’s arrival this summer and wish Mr. and Mrs. Leigh a very fond farewell and the best of luck in their future endeavours.

Written By Will N. ’13 and Andrew P. ’13


The Making of Audrey II – Ridley College Presents ‘Little Shop of Horrors’

In three weeks Ridley College’s production of ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ opens!  Rehearsals, costume making and set and prop production are in full swing.  One of the fun challenges of this production is making 4 different stages of Audrey II’s – the giant man-eating plant!

Students working on #3 Audrey II for Ridley College production of 'Little Shop of Horrors'

#1 and #2 Audrey II - 'Little Shop of Horrors'

‘Little Shop of Horrors’ opens February 24th.  There are four shows, February 24th-25th and March 2-3rd each at 7:30pm.  For tickets please call Hanks: 905-684-1889 Ext. 2243.

Ridley College has an extensive Arts program including drama, music and visual arts. The drama program consists of two major productions a year (a drama and a musical), The CAPPIES- theatre review program and many other opportunities including touring productions to other countries, click here to find out more about the drama program.


Ridley College Announces New Headmaster

The Kidd Family

Ridley College is pleased to announce the appointment of J. Edward Kidd as the new Headmaster, effective July 16, 2012. Ridley’s current Headmaster Mr. Jonathan Leigh will be retiring after eight years of service.

Kidd is currently the Principal of the High School at Shanghai American School in Shanghai, China. He was born in the Ottawa Valley and went on to Queen’s University where he completed both his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education. Kidd also obtained his Masters of Science from the University of Buffalo (State University of New York).

Kidd began his teaching career in 1994 at North Grenville High School. In 1996 he moved to the Seoul International School in Seoul, Korea to teach English Literature. In 1998 he joined Shanghai American School, also as an English teacher. In 2009, after having conducted a highly competitive international search, Shanghai American School appointed Kidd as the Principal of the High School.

Kidd brings first hand teaching and leadership experience with both the International Baccalaureate (IB) and the Advanced Placement (AP) programs. He was a member of the team who, eleven years ago, planned and introduced the IB diploma program to Shanghai American School. His leadership training includes principal’s qualifications from Queen’s, Miami and Harvard.

The task of finding a new Headmaster is significant. The Search Committee, assisted by Amrop Knightsbridge, conducted a comprehensive global search, which resulted in a strong field to consider. A rigorous process of screening, interviews and on-campus visits was undertaken following which the committee recommended that Mr. Ed Kidd be appointed the 10th Headmaster of Ridley College. The Board of Governors unanimously approved the recommendation.  Kidd will be moving to St. Catharines with his wife and three children in July.

Ridley Hockey Helps the Homeless

It is estimated there is between 150,000 to 300,000 homeless people in Canada. ‘Hockey Helps the Homeless’ events take place throughout Canada to raise awareness and funds for frontline programs and reintegration projects for homeless men, women and children. On Thursday, January 19th, the first boys’ hockey team invites all Ridley parents, faculty, students and OR’s to join them for dinner at Big Marco’s (274 Fourth Ave, at Vansickle & Fourth). From 6pm-8pm, members of the team will be serving and bussing tables for ‘Hockey Helps the Homeless.’ All tips generated and a percentage of each bill will directly support the cause. The following evening, Friday 20th, the team will continue their fundraising efforts by conducting a 50/50 raffle and a Chuck-a-Puck contest during their game against Appleby College. The puck drops at 7pm in the Tiger Arena! Those unable to attend may support the team by contacting Mike McCourt-mike_mccourt@ridleycollege.