A Night at the Oscars of Education


Marci Ien of CTV and Rod Thompson of The Learning Parntership welcome guests at the 2014 Canada’s Outstanding Principals Awards Gala.

The Learning Partnership’s Canada’s Outstanding Principals are individuals who in some way (and there are many) have had a dramatic impact on a school community, leading to improved student achievement. Nominated by peers, colleagues and community members, the award winners represent all provinces and territories, and all areas of education found across the country.

I have attended the Canada’s Outstanding Principals Awards Gala, at which the awards are presented, for the last six years, and I have been overwhelmed by the elegance, and pomp and ceremony which make it one of the defining moments in each of the recipients’ careers. At your first Gala, when you receive the award, you are recognized and applauded by a room filled with friends and family, educators, business people, and politicians from all parts of Canada. It is a flash in time never to be forgotten. At subsequent Galas it is fun to watch the new Award winners and know the emotional roller coaster going on inside them.


The 2014 Canada’s Outstanding Principals being greeted with applause at the Awards Gala.

For glamour, excitement, elegance and entertainment the Canada’s Outstanding Principals Awards Gala easily holds its own when compared to the other award events being held at this time. However, it is unlike the Oscars, Grammys, Emmys, and such, at which individuals receive recognition for work in the previous year and are then given the opportunity to speak about themselves and a myriad of friends and associates. The Gala night is a time to hear of the remarkable accomplishments of the Award winners. Each recipient has their own moment when their story is read aloud. The profiles make it clear that many years of exemplary hard work are being recognized.

It is a night to remember.

Dunfield AlanAlan Dunfield is a Principal at St. Stephen Middle School in New Brunswick. He is a Canada’s Outstanding Principal Alumni, having won the award in 2009.


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