Lauretta McCall Holdridge Bursary

Lauretta McCall Holdridge
(Lauretta McCall Holdridge 1912 1990)

With an adventurous spirit and a passion to teach, Lauretta McCall helped spread education throughout British Columbia. After receiving her college degree from Craigdarroch Castle, she became one of the first in B.C. to obtain a teaching credential from the Provincial Normal School. She then began a distinguished career as a teacher at the age of nineteen.

In 1931, Lauretta accepted her first teaching job in the tiny community of Bednesti, which is about forty kilometers from Prince George. Lauretta lived in a one room cabin and walked four miles to school each day. Helping children unthaw their frozen lunches in the winter months was normal, and having butter with meals was a luxury; traveling to nearby dances on a horse was not only the norm, it was the only mode of transportation. Lauretta’s determination to teach in the wilderness reflected her strong character, which earned her a spot in a distinguishing book called “Women of BC.”

When Lauretta returned to Victoria two years later, she began a long list of teaching positions at Beacon Hill School, Victoria Girls’ Central, Victoria West, George Jay, View Royal, Cedar Hill, and Braefoot Elementary. She even became principal at both Cedar Hill and Braefoot, which was a huge step for women in Victoria at the time. Lauretta also published a teaching guide for gifted children, worked with dyslexic children, and taught student teachers at UVic. Her love of teaching was matched only by her faith and generosity: she was an active member in the United Church, offering her services to many community organizations.

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