A national organization which works with youth in promoting diversity has named Catholic Central in Windsor as the 2018 School of the Year.

Teacher David Walls was also named Educator of the Year by the Harmony Education Foundation. Walls has been teaching as CCHS for 20 years.

CCHS was named as the top school of the year for being actively engaged in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusivity.

Walls’ recognition is partially related to his work with the school’s project surrounding African-Canadian Cultural Experience where youth may begin to see themselves as academics, employees, providers, and as contributing, successful, goal-oriented members of our community.

Daut Said, a Grade 12 student originally from Ethiopia who hopes to land a college basketball scholarship and study mechanical engineering, said Walls is extremely deserving of the award.

“He’s a great man,” he said. “He’s inspiring us to become better people. He’ll do everything he can to make us achieve our goals.”

“We have goals and dreams just like everyone else,” said Uonaka Mandila, a Grade 12 student who plans to study nursing next year. “I felt like others thought that I couldn’t be successful, but when I came here, I knew I was going to do something with my life.”

Besides the ACCE, Catholic Central was also recognized for its Dare to Dream CommUNITY Project, an initiative designed to help a group of girls who recently arrived in Canada from Syria to build self-esteem through community involvement.

Walls and eight CCHS students will travel to Toronto in early November to receive the award.