Hellenic School of Ottawa

Founded in 1941, the Hellenic School of Ottawa is an institution of the Hellenic Community of Ottawa. Over the decades, it has provided students with fundamental knowledge of the Greek language and the country’s rich history.

Classes run Saturday mornings between September and April.

For more information, visit the Hellenic School of Ottawa Facebook Page.



The Hellenic Community of Ottawa Letters Patent reads:

“The Hellenic Community of Ottawa has been established for the following purposes and objects, that is to say: To buy, purchase, lease or otherwise acquire, obtain and hold or provide property to be used as a church, place of worship and place for religious instructions and instructions of the Greek language…”

Therefore, the two major elements that the Hellenic Community of Ottawa was established and built upon were our Greek Orthodox faith and our Greek Language.

In the early years, the few Greek-Canadian families living in Ottawa taught their children the Greek language at home or by private instruction by the Reverend Theodoros Skartsiaris. The first Hellenic School in Ottawa was established around 1940 by Reverend Fr. Vasilios Demeroutis, who was a graduate teacher of the Athens Teachers’ Academy. Because few families owned a car back then, and weather was an obstacle, the lessons took place in the old church basement at 360 Albert Street.

1950s - 1960s

In the 1950s, Father Philip Ramphos re-organized the School. The first official site was the Ottawa Technical High School as well as an an old school building on Kent Street in downtown Ottawa. Since then, the School has been housed at various sites including Glebe
Collegiate, Brookfield High School, First Avenue Public School, Carleton Heights Public School, and D. Roy Kennedy Public School.


During the 1970s, the School operated twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays, with six grades. In 1978, the Saturday program became part of the Heritage Language Program of the Ministry of Education of Ontario under the direction of the Ottawa Board of Education.


By the mid-1980s, the number of students increased significantly and additional classes were added – including a credit course, a preparatory kindergarten class, and an adult class.

During this decade, exercise books for mythology, history, geography and grammar were written by the Director and teachers and used for each class. The monthly publication “The School Chronicle” was established, as well as the annual Three Hierarchs celebration.

Winter and spring field trips became regular events, and the School began a close cooperation with the School of Montreal “Platon” and “Aristotelis” which included teachers’ seminars and exchange of visits by both schools.


Up until the beginning of 1990s, most of the Greeks in Ottawa lived in the downtown area of the city and Glebe Collegiate, located at Bronson and Glebe avenue, was the ideal location. However, by the middle of this decade, many young families had moved to the outskirts of the city, making difficult to travel all the way twice a week. This was the main reason why the Wednesday program ended. The hour and a half of Wednesday class was therefore added to the Saturday program.

During this decade, the School participated in the writing of books for students abroad under the program EDIAME and the direction of the University of Rethymno, Crete.

2010s - Present

Today, the School continues to operate every Saturday under the direction of the OCDSB and the Hellenic Community of Ottawa. The School is able to continue its mission due to the co-operation between these two organizations, along with the School’s dedicated and hard-working teachers, directors, committees, and the financial support of the Hellenic Community of Ottawa and the Order of AHEPA.

The Hellenic School of Ottawa is one of the oldest Greek Schools in North America. It is estimated that since its establishment, approximately 16,000 students have passed through the School.

For us Greeks, our language – beyond its richness and historic significance – is an integral part of our heritage and an essential part of our identity and existence. The Hellenic School of Ottawa is the carrier that has and will continue to transmit the priceless aspects of Greek culture and language for future generations of Greek Canadians.