Name change in the works for local elementary school

By Charlene Tebbutt
May 16, 2018 - 10:30am

The Prince Albert Catholic School Division is reviewing suggestions as it looks to change the name of a Prince Albert elementary school to better reflect their Catholic faith.

The school division is planning to change the name of W.F.A. Turgeon Catholic Community School in Prince Albert. Director of Education Lorel Trumier said the division expects to announce a new name for the school in coming weeks. Trumier said there have been two requests to change the name within the last five years, but the board wanted to first develop a policy around naming to guide any future changes. That policy has now been put into place, Trumier said.

“We are proceeding with collecting names from the community, from our teachers, from our students, from our staff,” Trumier said. “Staff are currently looking at honouring the W.F.A Turgeon name in a different way, just to ensure that we do honour the history, but we will be moving on to a name that is either a saint or patron of our Catholic faith.”

W.F.A. Turgeon Catholic Community School was built in 1972 and is named after William Ferdinand Alphonse Turgeon, a lawyer and judge in Prince Albert who later served as a Canadian diplomat. Turgeon grew up in New Brunswick and moved to Prince Albert in 1903 after graduating from law school. At that time, Prince Albert was the judicial centre for what was then the Northwest Territories and Turgeon worked as a Crown prosecutor. According to the Prince Albert Historical Society, he later was appointed as a justice of the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal and was appointed Chief Justice of Saskatchewan in 1938.

Turgeon resigned from the bench in 1941 to serve as a diplomat at the request of then-Prime Minister W.L. Mackenzie King, serving for 15 years in Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Belgium, Ireland, and Portugal. According to the historical society, he went on to chair 12 Royal Commissions, leading investigations into the Canadian grain trade, textiles, railways, and the transfer of natural resources to provincial control in Manitoba. Turgeon passed away in 1969 at age 91.


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