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Girls' Schools

Guide to private schools for girls

Find a list of schools  

At an all-girls school, young women have the opportunity to develop a strong sense of themselves and their abilities in a comfortable environment with staff who understand the unique learning styles of girls and seek to surround them with positive role models.

In this type of atmosphere, your daughter can feel free to ask questions, express her feelings and state her opinions without the restrictions and self-consciousness she may otherwise feel in a co-ed environment.

Video: All-girls independent schools

 

 

Many parents find that their daughters feel less pressure at a girls school than they would elsewhere. For many young ladies, boys are intimidating and girls feel a need to worry about their appearance in front of them. An all girls setting removes a lot of these stresses and allow students to focus on academics first and foremost.

Private girls schools also provide your child with a comfortable forum to discuss distinctly female issues. In a different kind of environment, talking about such things as female body image, expectations, and sexuality might make students feel uncomfortable. However, at all girls schools, the environment facilitates more openness and girls gain confidence.

Benefits of an all-girls education

One of the key advantages of a girls-only school is a sense of empowerment in all aspects of the curriculum. In the past society has dictated that certain subjects such as science or technology are primarily ‘boys subjects’, however when introduced to a single-sex environment, various studies outlined by the National Association for Choice in Education show that girls are more likely to explore non-traditional subjects and to try things they might not otherwise. Consider for a moment how likely it is that girls are willing to take a chance on a different subject when they’re surrounded by peers who have similar experiences as young women and who are surrounded by strong women role models.

According to NACE, teachers can also employ strategies in the all-girls classroom that might not work as well or at all in a co-ed classroom. They recognize differences in the way girls learn and instead of reinforcing gender stereotypes, as can often happen in a co-ed environment where those roles are intensified (what they call 'gender intensification'), they encourage and celebrate the diversity among girls with the understanding that some girls prefer sports and computer science just as much as they enjoy English and arts.

Additional studies have shown that girls in single-sex schools generally perform better than girls in co-ed schools, regardless of socio-economic and ability levels. The Goodman Research Group, who conducted The Girls’ School Experience: A Survey of Young Alumnae of Single-Sex Schools, also stated that 93 per cent of girls school grads are very or extremely satisfied with their school’s ability to provide individualized attention and 80 per cent strongly feel encouragement to develop their own interests.

Increased career aspirations

Single-sex schools often give students the confidence to pursue lofty goals both at school and in the work force. 95 per cent of recent graduates of all-girls’ schools said that having a career and profession was very or extremely important to them, and 78 per cent added that it was very or extremely important that they hold leadership positions in their professional lives as well.

“More than 80 per cent of girls’ school grads consider their academic performance highly successful,” says Dr. Linda Sax, UCLA, Women Graduates of Single-Sex and Coeducational High Schools: Differences in their Characteristics and the Transition to College.

Identity awareness and confidence

While many young girls are caught up in self-consciousness, doubt and cattiness, an all-girls’ school can provide an environment to foster sisterhood and self-expression. Girls are able to pursue areas of their choice, surrounded by strong role models to follow.

The National Association for Choice in Education states that, in contrast to boys, "girls generalize the meaning of their failures because they interpret them as indicating that they have disappointed adults, and thus they are of little worth. In addition, because girls view evaluative feedback as diagnostic of their abilities, failure may lead them to incorporate this information into their more general view of themselves." One of the advantages of a girls only private school is that it can adapt to this, recognizing that girls respond this way and give feedback accordingly.

Learn more about the advantages from Elizabeth Falco, Canadian Liaison for The National Coalition of Girls’ Schools, in discover the benefits of all-girls education.

Criticisms of an all-girls education

Apart from the common criticisms that separating children into gendered classrooms is sexist and that it’s difficult to conduct sound research on the benefits of single-sex education, another important area of concern is that girls’ overall social development is hindered by a lack of interaction with boys.

However, a study conducted by Neville Bruce and Katherine Sanders called "Incidence and duration of romantic attraction in students progressing from secondary to tertiary education” in the Journal of Biosocial Sciences found that not only do girls at single-sex schools have just as many heterosexual friendships and relationships as girls at coed schools but that girls in single-sex environments have more control in their interactions with boys, have more autonomy in their personal relationships, and are much less likely to experience an unwanted pregnancy.

At an all-girls school students still have opportunities to interact with boys but they are much more likely to have a broader social circle that includes boys and whom they can choose to interact, instead of their complex social circle being a central focus as is often the case in co-ed schools.

Bullies at all-girls schools

In general, due to a number of factors such as individualized attention, lower student-to-teacher ratio, increased supervision, closely monitored technology, and supportive and inclusive learning environments, private schools have increased resources to better handle instances of bullying or problems before they escalate.  

Learn more about bullying in private schools.

Differences in culture at an all-girls school

The overall culture of a single-sex environment compared to co-ed is perhaps felt most strongly during a school visit. Where girls may feel more prone to getting lost in the shuffle or overshadowed by their male counterparts at a co-ed school, among a strong culture of women in the hallways and classrooms each student can feel free to stand out and be herself, empowered to excel throughout her day without the competition of boys.

Things to consider when choosing a girls private school

  • What is the school's reputation? Do you have references from other parents or girls at the school?
  • What is the school’s educational philosophy? Do you agree with it?
  • Why would you prefer an all girls education to a coed school?
  • How far is the school from where you live?
  • Did the tour of the school impress you?
  • Does the school have scholarships and bursaries available?

Plenty of all girls schools offer programs from kindergarten until grade twelve. And, some schools have both elementary institutions ("feeder schools") that are affiliated with middle or high schools.

Get more information on choosing a school, how to apply, and ways to pay for private school.

For a much more in-depth look into all girls schools, visit one of our annual Private School Expos. Here, you will learn about what you need to know to navigate the private school selection and admissions processes.

Series: Girls Schools

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List of Girls' Schools


 FEATURED SCHOOL     OPEN HOUSE      SCHOOL EXPO EXHIBITOR

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  •  
  • Name
  • Cost
  • St. Margaret's School (est. 1908)   1080 Lucas Avenue, Victoria, British Columbia, V8X 3P7

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (220 students)
    • Boarding school (130 students)
    St. Margaret's School (est. 1908) is an independent school in Victoria, BC, offering empowering education for girls from JK to Grade 12. At SMS, girls don't just get equal opportunity; they get every opportunity.  
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $9,500 to $49,300 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 9500 3-17 Victoria

    Elmwood School (est. 1915)   261 Buena Vista Road, Ottawa, Ontario, K1M 0V9
    (Buena Vista Road / Springfield Road)

    • Preschool to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (370 students)
    Elmwood School is Ottawa's pre-eminent school for girls from JK to Grade 12. Our high academic standards, small class sizes and safe, supportive environment ensure that each girl is inspired to reach her full potential.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Ottawa
    • Progressive
    • International Baccalaureate
    • Standard- enriched
    $12,956 to $22,980 /year
    Day Girls 12956 2-17 Ottawa,

    Trafalgar Castle School (est. 1874)   401 Reynolds Street, Whitby, Ontario, L1N 3W9
    (Brock Street / Hwy. 2)

    • 5 to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (140 students)
    • Boarding school (70 students)
    Located just 45 minutes east of Toronto, Trafalgar Castle School offers world-class curriculum in a small-school environment that inspires and encourages growth. * Day and boarding * All Girls * Grades 5 to 12  
    • Liberal Arts
    • Standard- enriched
    $21,860 to $52,230 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 21860 10-17 Whitby,

    Hawthorn School for Girls (est. 1989)   101 Scarsdale Road, Toronto, Ontario, M3B 2R2
    (York Mills / Leslie)

    • Nursery/Toddler to SK (Coed)
    • 1 to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school
    • Homestay school
    Hawthorn School is an all-girls school in Toronto that offers programs from toddler to grade 12. Our unique mentoring program is tailored to each girl to help them reach their full potential.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Liberal Arts
    • Accelerated
    $7,000 to $17,700 /year
    Day Coed Girls 7000 1-17 Toronto,

    Branksome Hall (est. 1903)   10 Elm Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 1N4
    (Bloor Street East / Mount Pleasant Road)

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (834 students)
    • Boarding school (66 students)
    Branksome Hall is an all girls school in Toronto, from JK to Grade 12, including 56 boarding students. Tuition ranges from $28,995 to $31,245 for day students.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Liberal Arts
    • International Baccalaureate
    • Standard- enriched
    $29,590 to $56,855 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 29590 3-17 Toronto,

    Queen Margaret's School (est. 1921)   660 Brownsey Avenue, Duncan, British Columbia, V9L 1C2
    (Brownsey Avenue / Government Street)

    • 8 to 12 (Girls)
    • Preschool to 7 (Coed)
    • Day school (250 students)
    • Boarding school (90 students)
    Queen Margaret's School is an independent co-ed day school Preschool to Gr. 7 and all girls day/boarding school for Gr. 8-12 in Duncan, BC.  
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $5,100 to $52,400 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls Coed 5100 2-17 Duncan,

    Sacred Heart School of Montreal (est. 1861)   3635 Atwater Avenue, Montreal, Quebec, H3H 1Y4
    (Atwater / Docteur-Penfield)

    • 7 to 11 (Girls)
    • Day school (230 students)
    As part of the global Network of Sacred Heart Schools, we offer a first class education and graduate women of action with a sound moral compass.  
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $13,764 to $33,492 /year
    Day Girls 13764 12-16 Montreal,

    Venture Academy Troubled Teens Program (BC)   2040 Joe Riche Road, Kelowna, British Columbia, V1P 1G7

    • 7 to 12 (Boys)
    • 7 to 12 (Girls)
    • Homestay school
    Venture Academy is a therapeutic private school providing educational and clinical support services, individualized instruction and engaging interaction to get students back on track and restore confidence.  
    • Traditional
    • Student- paced
    Varies /year
    & Homestay Boys Girls 12-17 Kelowna

    Buffalo Seminary (est. 1851)   205 Bidwell Parkway, Buffalo, New York, 14222
    (Soldiers Circle / Chapin Parkway)

    • 9 to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (178 students)
    • Boarding school (47 students)
    Independent day and boarding school for college-bound girls. Our STEAM curriculum is unique, and creative, independent thinking is valued. Located in Buffalo, NY, girls access the best of city living.  
    • Liberal Arts
    • Accelerated
    US $19,840 to $46,715 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 19840 14-17 Buffalo,

    St. Mildred's-Lightbourn School (est. 1891)   1080 Linbrook Road, Oakville, Ontario, L6J 2L1

    • Preschool to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (550 students)
    Oakville's SMLS continues to be a premier independent school for girls Preschool to Graduating Year since 1891. "Millie" graduates take on the world with confidence and the knowledge that they can do anything.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto, Halton-Peel
    • Progressive
    • Standard- enriched
    $9,000 to $26,300 /year
    Day Girls 9000 2-17 Oakville,

    Trafalgar School For Girls (est. 1887)   3495 Simpson Street, Montreal, Quebec, H3G 2J7

    • 7 to 11 (Girls)
    • Day school (140 students)
    • Homestay school
    Based in the heart of downtown Montreal, Trafalgar School for Girls is a diverse school community that challenges and inspires girls to love learning, build confidence and shape a better world.  
    • Liberal Arts
    • Standard- enriched
    $15,875 /year
    Day Girls 15875 12-16 Montreal

    Villa Maria (est. 1854)   4245 Decarie Boulevard, Montreal, Quebec, H4A 3K4
    (Av de Monkland / Boulevard Décarie)

    • 7 to 11 (Girls)
    • 7 to 7 (Boys)
    • Day school (1400 students)
    Villa Maria offers programs from grades seven to 12 in Montreal. Its average class size is 28 to 32 students.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Montreal
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $4,175 /year
    Day Girls Boys 4175 12-16 Montreal,

    Holy Name of Mary College School (est. 2008)   2241 Mississauga Road, Mississauga, Ontario, L5H 2K8
    (Mississauga Rd / Dundas St W)

    • 5 to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school
    Holy Name of Mary College School offers programs for grades five to 12 in Mississauga. Its average class size is 15 to 18 students.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto, Halton-Peel
    • Progressive
    • Accelerated
    $16,350 to $44,500 /year
    Day Girls 16350 10-17 Mississauga,

    Havergal College (est. 1894)   1451 Avenue Road, Toronto, Ontario, M5N 2H9
    (Lawrence Avenue West / Avenue Road)

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (860 students)
    • Boarding school (50 students)
    Havergal College is an all-girls school in Toronto for students in JK to Grade 12. Preparing Young Women to Make a Difference Since 1894.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Liberal Arts
    • Standard- enriched
    $30,820 to $55,500 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 30820 3-17 Toronto

    Miss Edgar's & Miss Cramp's School (est. 1909)   525 Mount Pleasant Avenue, Westmount, Quebec, H3Y 3H6

    • K to 11 (Girls)
    • Day school (325 students)
    Miss Edgar's & Miss Cramp's School offers programs from kindergarten to grade 11 in Westmount, Quebec. Its average class size is 18 students.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Montreal
    • Progressive
    • Accelerated
    $19,150 to $20,440 /year
    Day Girls 19150 5-16 Westmount

    York House School (est. 1932)   4176 Alexandra Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6J 2V6

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (656 students)
    York House School offers programs from junior kindergarten to grade 12 in Vancouver. Its average class size is 16 to 20 students.  
    • Liberal Arts
    • Reggio Emilia
    • Standard- enriched
    $19,600 to $23,100 /year
    Day Girls 19600 3-17 Vancouver

    St. Clement's School (est. 1901)   21 St. Clements Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M4R 1G8

    • 1 to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (470 students)
    St. Clement's School develops outstanding women who are intellectually curious, courageous and compassionate.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Liberal Arts
    • Standard- enriched
    $28,350 /year
    Day Girls 28350 6-17 Toronto

    Crofton House School (est. 1898)   3200 West 41st Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6N 3E1

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (885 students)
    Crofton House School in Vancouver, BC is a university preparatory school with JK to grade 12 classes. Tuition starts at $16,000.  
    • Progressive
    • Standard- enriched
    $18,960 /year
    Day Girls 18960 3-17 Vancouver

    Bishop Strachan School (est. 1867)   298 Lonsdale Road, Toronto, Ontario, M4V 1X2
    (Bathurst St / St Clair Ave W)

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (825 students)
    • Boarding school (80 students)
    Located in Toronto, The Bishop Strachan School is Canada's oldest independent JK to Grade 12 day and boarding school for girls, welcoming students from Toronto and around the world.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Traditional
    • Reggio Emilia
    • Student- paced
    $31,190 to $59,100 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 31190 3-17 Toronto,

    Study (est. 1915)   3233 The Boulevard, Westmount, Quebec, H3Y 1S4
    (The Boulevard / Place Breaside)

    • K to 11 (Girls)
    • Day school (365 students)
    The Study offers mother tongue programmes in both English and French from kindergarten to grade 11 in Westmount, Quebec. The average class size is 12 to 18 students.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Montreal
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $18,415 to $20,735 /year
    Day Girls 18415 5-16 Westmount,

    Pensionnat du Saint-Nom-de-Marie (est. 1905)   628, chemin de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine, Montreal, Quebec, H2V 2C5
    (chemin de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine / Avenue Claude Champagne)

    • 7 to 11 (Girls)
    • Day school (1050 students)
    • Boarding school (60 students)
    École secondaire francophone privée pour jeunes filles située à Outremont, Qc. Les frais de scolarité sont de 3 800 $ par année. Elle offre les profils Éducation internationale, Danse-études et Musique-études.  
    • Liberal Arts
    • International Baccalaureate
    • Standard- enriched
    $4,000 to $9,150 /year
    Day & Boarding Girls 4000 12-16 Montreal,

    Heritage (est. 1984)   5600 Heritage School Dr, Provo, Utah, 84604
    (Heritage School Dr / River Run Dr)

    • 7 to 12 (Boys)
    • 7 to 12 (Girls)
    • Boarding school (115 students)
    Heritage offers expert care for at-risk adolescents including those diagnosed with Mood Disorder, depression, anxiety, defiance towards authority figures and those on the Autism Spectrum. Learn more on our website.  
    • Progressive
    • Student- paced
    US $138,000 /year
    Boarding Boys Girls 138000 12-17 Provo,

    Collège François-Delaplace (est. 1963)   365 Compton Street East, Waterville, Quebec, J0B 3H0
    (Rue Compton / Rue Principale)

    • 7 to 12 (Girls)
    • Boarding school (200 students)
    COLLÈGE FRANÇOIS-DELAPLACE is a private Traditional / academic boarding school in Waterville, Quebec. The school offers programs for grades 7 to 12 with enrolment of 200 boarding students.  
    • Traditional
    • Standard- enriched
    $7,950 to $30,300 /year
    Boarding Girls 7950 12-17 Waterville,

    Venture Academy Troubled Teens Program (ON)   3761 Horseshoe Valley Road West, Minesing, Ontario, L0L 1Y0

    • 7 to 12 (Boys)
    • 7 to 12 (Girls)
    • Homestay school
    Venture Academy is a therapeutic treatment and education program for students who may be struggling with ADHD, learning challenges, underachieving, behavioural issues, and a variety of clinical diagnoses.  
    • Traditional
    • Student- paced
    Varies /year
    Boys Girls 12-17 Minesing

    Linden School (est. 1993)   10 Rosehill Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M4T 1G5
    (Yonge / St. Clair)

    • JK to 12 (Girls)
    • Day school (115 students)
    The Linden School provides a challenging academic program for girls from JK - Grade 12. We create opportunities to discover the joys of learning and foster the development of critical thinking and physical well-being.  
    School Expo Exhibitor - Toronto
    • Progressive
    • Standard- enriched
    $13,000 to $17,950 /year
    Day Girls 13000 3-17 Toronto,