Ms. Shelley Ortolani
English, Writer's Craft and Drama Teacher
BA Western University
MA McGill University
BEd University of Toronto
Ms. Shelley Ortolani is a graduate of McGill (MA) and the University of Western Ontario (BA). As a qualified teacher (BEd University of Toronto), she was Head of English at Ridley College in St. Catharines, teaching English, Media and Film Studies to students in its Upper School. Ms. Ortolani was also the Director of Innovation and Instructional Technologies at Ridley College. In this role, she worked with students and teachers wanting to explore and experiment with new tools, ideas, and pedagogies. She was also employed as one of six Technology Facilitators with Cohort 21. Here she provided personalized yearlong PD (a blend of online and F2F sessions) for educators wanting to stretch their learning and explore 21st century tools.
Outside the classroom, she coached Varsity Track and Field, oversaw an annual student film festival, and ran an Amnesty International Student Group for students in grades 9-12. Throughout her teaching career, she has taught grades 7-12 and a wide variety of courses ranging from Visual Arts to Politics.
Ms. Ortolani has won international awards for her contribution to ideas in education, and her considerable experience has included working with Greenpeace, the UN, and teaching in England with Reach Cambridge and in Ecuador with the University of Toronto. She is a painter and illustrator with a deep interest in and knowledge of the visual arts. A professional artist and writer, her recent publications include animated illustrations for Sarah McLachlan’s performance of “World on Fire” (2017 JUNO Awards), “Beautiful Girl” (2014 JUNO Awards) and essays “The Edible Student: Why We Eat Our Young in the Consumer Age” and “Lost Amid A Million Voices, Decoding and Mastering Multiple Literacies” (Dialogue).
In her ‘free’ time, if she is not running, writing or reading, she likes to beachcomb. She finds walking the beach to be good for the soul; it helps her find balance in an otherwise very busy professional life.