A cherished and longstanding member of the OISE Alumni Association, Sylvia McPhee passed away on March 25, 2023 at Toronto General Hospital in her 91st year. In her hometown of London, Ontario, Sylvia developed an interest in education as a teenager which became a lifelong passion. She trained as a teacher at the then London Normal School later obtaining an MEd from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) in 1978.
In London, she was a classroom teacher, consultant, vice principal and principal and taught for a year at an infant school in Wales on an exchange program. She then moved to Toronto to join the Ontario Ministry of Education as an Education Officer, where the province became her classroom. She also taught teachers at the post-graduate level and served on the OISE Board of Governors as well as being active on the OISE Alumni Association.
Her particular interest was early childhood education and she supported many organizations dedicated to furthering the development of young children. She was a strong advocate for early childhood literacy. Sylvia had a lifelong interest in the performing arts, first instilled in her by her father. She was an avid and knowledgeable attendee of theatre, opera, ballet and classical music performances. She supported many performing arts organizations both financially and as a volunteer, and particularly those that combine an art form with development of children, thereby combining two of her abiding interests. Sylvia also had an interest in genealogy and was active in the Clan Macfie Society of Canada and served as the Commissioner for Canada to Clan Macfie.