At Peak Centre Academy, we have remarkable staff members who have proven their excellence in education and athletics throughout their careers. We are extremely lucky to have the following as part of our academic staff for the 2014-15 year:
Principal – Kelly Bougie
Kelly Bougie has been teaching in the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board since 2004 and has had the pleasure of teaching students from kindergarten through grade eight. She has her primary, junior and intermediate qualifications and is presently on her way of obtaining her specialist in special education; having completed part one and two. Throughout her varied teaching experiences, she has always been involved beyond the classroom setting offering her students activities outside the curriculum. She has organized and ran a variety of extra-curricular activities such as Borden ball, cross-country, basketball, track and field, primary/junior/intermediate talent shows, school plays, and junior intramurals. She graduated from the University of Ottawa with a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Human Kinetics and also works as a kinesiologist in a physiotherapy clinic during school holidays and is employed as a group exercise instructor. She has been involved in sports throughout her education. She was the high school co-president of athletics and captain of various teams throughout high school. She also received a scholarship in ballet and taught throughout her school years. Kelly has a deep passion for sport and academics. She believes in raising the bar and motivating students to pursue their goals and inspirations.
Although he is a recent graduate of the Teacher Education program at the University of Ottawa, Matthew has spent the past decade involved in education. He spent six years working as an occasional teacher for the Toronto District School Board, primarily in special education and classrooms with behavioural issues, as well as four years working with students with special needs. Matthew earned an Honours Degree in History with a minor in American Studies and his subject strengths are English, history, and geography. Matthew lives in Kanata with his wife and baby son.
Matthew believes that now, more than ever, it is crucial for students to develop a sense of citizenship through an awareness of current events. To this end, he approaches traditional subject matter with an eye to making connections to issues that concern students and the world in which they live. Students learn best, and retain what they have learned better, when they think for themselves, come to their own conclusions, and form their own opinions. For any classroom to be effective, students must take an active role in their learning, interacting with the curriculum in such a way that a learning experience takes place, rather than simple instruction. The classroom that inspires curiosity and focuses on discovery is the classroom that allows students to achieve more and reach their true potential. It is true at any grade level that students learn best when they are satisfying their curiosity.
Matthew has a sports background, having played competitive hockey in the MTHL, city level baseball in Toronto, as well as football in high school. These experiences have provided Matthew with an understanding of the demands placed on young men and women who endeavour to perform at an elite level athletically, while maintaining academic excellence. The blending of academics and athletics provides students with problem solving skills, a sense of responsibility, and a tendency toward teamwork in all aspects of life. Matthew is very excited to be working in an environment that allows for the cultivation of these essential life skills.
Ali began her love of teaching and working with children during her high school years when she worked as a camp counselor and head water ski instructor at Arrowhead Camp in the Muskokas. After high school Ali attended the University of Toronto, where she completed her degree in Physical and Health Education and then her teaching degree.
Among her many accomplishments and achievements during her time at the University of Toronto, Ali captained the Varsity Blues during the strongest time in the programs history, winning a CIS championship and being named a CIAU All Canadian and tournament All-Star. She received a “Silver T” which recognizes excellence in Academic and Ahetletic achievements and was nominated U of T’s Female Athlete of the Year. During her playing days at The University of Toronto Ali had a number of tryouts with the Canadian Women’s National Team.
After Graduation Ali’s professional teaching career began with the Toronto District School Board. After moving back to Ottawa to start her family, Ali worked as an occasional teacher with the OCDSB, and then ran two very successful businesses from home while raising her four beautiful children.
Ali is currently very involved with shaping the development and coaching philosophy of the Nepean Girls Hockey Association. As a coach, mentor, board member, and Director of Coach and Player Development, Ali has worked with players and coaches of all ages and levels. She has recently designed and written the NGHA Coaching Manual that is provided to all coaches in the NGHA. She develops and implements coaching clinics and is part of a team that drives the “skill development first” coaching philosophy of the organization.
Ali’s fair and honest approach to everything she does is evident in her classroom. She provides a safe, caring environment, where students are encouraged to drive themselves to do their best. Her expectations are high but achievable as the only demand is that students do the best that they can do. She is a supportive, thoughtful, and dynamic teacher who loves to teach and your children will thrive in her classroom.
Ben McLeod returns to PEAK Academy with a rich background of international playing, coaching, and teaching experience. Ben is a native of Ottawa and is a University of Ottawa graduate with an Honours English/Minor History degree (2007), and a Bachelor of Education degree (2011). Ben is entering his sixth year of full time teaching and has experience at the high school level in Ontario at a private school for two years and most recently in Saskatchewan’s public school system at the middle years’ level where he was excited to focus on Physical Education for two years. Ben is also a certified Developmental 1 coach and has coached at the Major Bantam AAA level as well as coaching basketball, track, and volleyball in school. Ben has a passion for skill development and has worked for 9 years as a head instructor with Turcotte Stickhandling, as well as conducting skill clinics wherever he has taught. Prior to his teaching and coaching career, Ben played at the Jr. A level with the Ottawa Jr. Sens before moving on to a successful career at the University of Ottawa, where he was named CIS Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year and finished 2nd in the nation in scoring in 2007. Following his university career, Ben proceeded to pursue a three-year professional career in Kaufbeuren (German Oberliga), Cincinnati (ECHL), and Reading (ECHL). Ben has a passion to inspire student-athletes to maximize their potential in all arenas of life and is excited to be a part of the team at PEAK!
Christina is new to Peak this year, having recently moved to Ottawa from Vancouver. As an undergrad she attended Simon Fraser University where she completed both her B.Sc. as well as the teaching program (PDP). She was selected to participate in the European Community – Canada Mobility Exchange Program once she completed her teaching degree, and lived in Germany for one semester where she was immersed in their school system and taught at a high school. After returning to Vancouver and teaching for a number of years she decided to return to school and completed her Masters degree in Mathematics at Waterloo.
Stepping into her classroom, you will notice that students enjoy being there. One of her top priorities is to create an engaging learning environment; one in which students feel comfortable asking questions, challenging themselves to improve their understanding and skill set, and exploring beyond the curriculum. She implements a variety of approaches to facilitate learning in her classroom, including hands-on activities, the use of manipulatives, self-assessment, and the integration of technology to enhance learning. She maintains a website which allows students to access notes from class, extra practice, and includes important dates such as upcoming quizzes and tests.
Christina has worked with students who struggle in math, helping them build confidence and find success. She has also worked with gifted students, providing support for various learning styles. Her passion for math and engaging class environment allow students to thrive, and help those with anxiety become more confident.
In her 10+ years of teaching, Christina has been involved in many extra-curricular activities; sponsoring Student Council as well as Reach for the Top, the Math Contest club and KEY club. She supervised and participated in an anti-bullying awareness school flash mob, and has coached numerous teams including ultimate frisbee, track and field, volleyball, and table tennis. She has taken her ultimate frisbee and table tennis teams to Provincials, and the senior Reach for the Top team to Nationals.
Christina is an avid ultimate frisbee player, enjoys snowboarding, hiking and cycling, and plays soccer and volleyball recreationally.
Kelsey Knowles grew up on the Bay of Chaleur in North-Eastern New Brunswick. At a young age, Kelsey became involved in a number of community projects and extracurricular activities, and in 2011, she passed along her passion for athletics by founding a sports and leadership camp for youth in Bathurst, New Brunswick. After graduating from Bathurst High School, Kelsey travelled to Fredericton, New Brunswick where she completed an Honours degree in Criminology at St. Thomas University. To expand on her undergraduate research, which looked at the relationships between school social bonds and self-reported delinquency, Kelsey furthered her passion for education and youth by completing a Bachelor of Education at St. Thomas University in 2012.
In the spring of 2015, Kelsey earned a Master of Arts in Education degree at the University of Ottawa. Her Master’s research, funded by the O’Brien Foundation and the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada, was a phenomenological inquiry into the cultivation of present moment consciousness in teacher education. Kelsey’s thesis research was theoretically inspired by the work of Max van Manen and Ted T. Aoki, whose contributions to education and child-centered philosophies speak to the value of teacher pedagogy and tact.
Kelsey’s athletic background fueled her entire educational journey. She began by playing almost every sport available at her high school and in her local community (basketball, volleyball, soccer, track and field, cross country running, golf, competitive swimming, and waterskiing), and continued her volleyball career into university where she played as the starting setter and two-time captain for the St. Thomas University Tommies. Kelsey was named to the ACAA (Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association) All Star Team two years in a row, earned a STU player of the year title, received five CCAA (Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association) National Scholar Awards, and brought home two CCAA Academic All Canadian Awards over her five-year career. Kelsey currently plays in Tier 1 of the OCVL (Ottawa Competitive Volleyball League).
Kelsey is incredibly excited that her academic and athletic path has led her to Peak, an academy that seamlessly blends her love for sport and education.
Sébastien LeBel is an Ottawa native who has studied at the University of Ottawa for his B.Sc. in biopharmaceutical sciences and his B.Ed. He is avid about everything science related and about learning and teaching foreign languages. Gymnastics, dragon boating and rock climbing are his favorite sports and he is hoping to discover hockey through the students at PEAK Academy. He has competed at the provincial level in gymnastics as a high school student and later participated in the 2012 Hong Kong World Crew Championship. Sébastien recently obtained his B.Ed. but has taught English as a foreign language in South Korea for a year and has spent his university and high schools years tutoring other students in science and math.
Sébastien’s classroom approach is to make the subject matter relatable and usable to the students. He believes that the main goal of school is to shape citizens who are critical thinkers, autodidacts and who understand the value and privilege of knowledge.