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Former politician Jean Augustine gets Brampton school named after her

The Peel District School Board on Tuesday christened its newest secondary school for Canadian social justice advocate and politician, Jean Augustine.

'Absolute honour to have a Peel secondary school named for me,' Augustine says

Peel District School Board's newest secondary school is the first in the world to be named for Canadian social justice advocate and politician Jean Augustine. (Office of Ontario's Fairness Commissioner)

Canadian social justice advocate and politician Jean Augustine's name will grace Peel District School Board's (PDSB) newest secondary school.

Jean Augustine Secondary School, which is located in Brampton, is scheduled to open its doors September 2016. 

"Jean Augustine is a passionate, energetic social justice advocate who will serve as an exemplary role model for our future leaders," Janet McDougald, the board's chair, said in a statement after PDSB chose the name Tuesday night. "Her ground-breaking work as an educator and politician in Canada strongly connects to the school's vision of SAIL — service, activism, innovation and leadership." 

A former principal, Augustine said she is honoured to have a school named after her.

"I have dedicated my life's work to these SAIL principles, and I'm excited to see how they will inspire future generations to engage in the affairs of their community and the world," she said.

Augustine became the first black Canadian woman to be elected to the House of Commons, sitting in Parliament from 1993 until 2006. During this period, she served as parliamentary secretary to the prime minister, minister of state for multiculturalism and the status of women, and was a deputy Speaker.

In 2007, she was appointed as the first fairness commissioner for Ontario, a position created to advocate for Canadians with foreign professional credentials. She was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada, Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and in 2012 received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal. 

Augustine is also the former national president of the Congress of Black Women of Canada, and was instrumental in the declaration of February as Black History Month in Canada.

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