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Avante School

Suite 202 - 2830 Grandview Hwy , Vancouver, British Columbia, V5M 2C9

Liberal Arts
Grades (Gender):
Gr. 2 to Gr. 12 (Coed)
$6,500 to 13,500/year
Main Language:
Avg. Class Size:
4 to 8
Day: Varies (Gr. 2 - 12)

School Address
Suite 202 - 2830 Grandview Hwy , Vancouver, British Columbia, V5M 2C9

About this school:


Avante School features custom tailored programs to meet the various needs of individual learners. Small friendly classes focus on comfort first, even with high standards. Accelerated, enriched, and gifted programs, hands on learning, project based initiatives, and many other features allow everyone to find success in their own way. Project Raven's Wing is especially designed for aboriginal learner success. International students and locals enjoy our pan cultural approach and our very successful ESL program. — Visit school website



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Our Take: Avante School

our takeThe Avante school was founded in 2009 in the understanding that some students aren’t well served within a traditional or typical academic environment. The school is small, which is a foundation for the program’s strengths. Instruction is student led, responsive to their specific needs and pacing as they move through the curriculum. It’s also cross-curricular in ways that most schools simply don’t have the opportunity to be, again this being a function of size. Field trips, guest speakers, group work—all find a place within the delivery of the curriculum. It’s not for everyone, but for the students that enroll, the experience of working closely in a responsive, peer-based environment can be transformative.

Principal's Message


Martin Hamm, Principal

A growing number of students are finding that they want something a little different from their school than the "one size fits all" model. Those have always been my favourite students to teach. Its fun to make a multi-age peer group where there is no "normal" and everybody can learn their own way, show off their own gifts, and be themselves. Its not only more natural, its also a much more efficient way to learn - and its more fun too. Sure we have high standards, but thats no excuse to be bored all day.


Curriculum Liberal Arts

Primary Curriculum: Liberal Arts

What Avante School says: Although we often use a progressive approach to instruction, we also have a clear idea of how to ensure a full liberal arts curriculum is fully covered. Project based learning allows students to comfortably achieve different goals within the same class. Field trips, guest speakers, and Hands-on learning allow students to find the real meaning behind the curriculum. We also have a very strong arts program in Music, Drama, Visual Art, and Dance.\n

  • Approach:

  • Pedagogies and subject courses:

  • Mathematics Equal Balance

      These math programs feature an equal balance of “Traditional” and “Discovery” methods.
      Learn about the different mathematics approaches  

    • What Avante School says: The algorithms must be learned, but discovering a need for them is excellent motivation. Different students learn best in different ways. A variety of approaches benefits the biggest number of students.

    • Textbooks and supplementary materials: We use a wide variety of texts, and a large number of original supplementary projects.

    • Calculator policy: Before grade 8 calculators are only allowed for assignments that are designed to use calculators, or by students with a diagnosed calculation disability. After grade 8, they won't help much anyway.

    Early Reading Balanced Literacy

      Balanced reading programs are typically Whole Language programs with supplementary phonics training. This training might be incidental, or it might take the form of mini-lessons.
      Learn about the different early reading approaches  

    • What Avante School says: No evidence has ever shown that all students learn the same way. A variety of approaches will lead to the success of the most students.

    • DIBELS Testing: This school does not use DIBELS testing to assess reading progress.

    • What Avante School says: This information is not currently available.

    Writing Equal balance

      Programs that balance systematic and process approaches equally likely have an emphasis on giving young students ample opportunities to write, while providing supplementary class-wide instruction in grammar, parts of sentences, and various writing strategies.
      Learn about the different writing approaches  

    • What Avante School says: We provide a large number of practical and personal reasons for students to write for fluency. However, to avoid reinforcing bad habits, we also teach the technical skills needed, when they are needed. This also provides an excellent balance between comfort (because they have the skill) and motivation (because they have something they WANT to write about).

    Science Equal Balance

      Science programs that balance expository and inquiry learning equally will likely have an equal blend of tests and experiments; direct, textbook-based instruction and student-centred projects.
      Learn about the different science approaches  

    • Teaching approach: Without the language and the tools, little can be observed. However, without observation, the technical data is lifeless. An questioning sensibility, with sufficient background knowledge, leads to the most interesting questions. Of course, the best balance between these will depend on the age of the student, and on the branch of science.

    • Topics covered in curriculum:

      Subject = offered
    • Treatment of evolution:

      Evolution as consensus theory
      Evolution as one of many equally viable theories
      Evolution is not taught

    Literature Equal Balance

      These literature programs draw in equal measure from “Traditional” and “Social Justice” programs.
      Learn about the different literature approaches  

    • What Avante School says: We appreciate that different students may each find different reasons to enjoy reading. As long as they are able to read critically, we are successful. Social Justice works from the past and present, and from different places is a motiving force to read and write, but not the only one. A background in works that are well known by a society adds important context to more recent works.

    Social Studies Thematic

      The Thematic approach organizes the curriculum around certain themes or cultural universals. Students might spend time focused on food. Then they might focus on transportation or government, and so on.
      Learn about the different social studies approaches  

    • What Avante School says: All three ways of thinking about this work best together. For example a class may use a theme to develop an idea of core knowledge. Through the years students do naturally have an expanding world view with which to think about significant places and events as they relate to the current theme.

    Humanities and Social Sciences Pragmatism

      Pragmatism in the humanities and social sciences emphasizes making learning relevant to students’ present-day experience. Assignments tend to centre around projects and tasks rather than argumentative essays; these projects will often have a “real-world” application or relevance. There might be more of a social justice component to a pragmatic program, though that isn’t always the case. Subjects like history and philosophy are still covered/offered, but they play a less prominent role in the overall program than in the case of perennialism. The social sciences (contemporary geography, sociology, psychology, etc), meanwhile, might play a more prominent role in pragmatic programs. The key goals are to make learning progressive and relevant, while teaching students real-life skills and critical thinking.
      Learn about the different humanities and social sciences approaches  

    • What Avante School says: Pragmatism does not preclude finding the relevance for today's students in "Big Works" from the past. History and Philosophy are required and can be pragmatic too. However, learning without relevance is hardly learning either.

    Foreign Languages Equal Balance

      These programs feature an equal blend of the audio-lingual and communicative styles of language instruction.
      Learn about the different foreign languages approaches  

    • What Avante School says: Pedagogy varies with student age and experience.

    • Studying a foreign language is required until:   9
    • Languages Offered: • Chinese-Mandarin • French • Spanish • ESL

    Fine Arts Equal Balance

      These programs have an equal emphasis on receptive and creative learning.
      Learn about the different fine arts approaches  

    • Program offers:

      Subject = offered
      Graphic Design
      Visual Arts
    • Visual studio philosophy:

    • What Avante School says: We have specialists teaching all students within all the areas of the Fine Arts. Discipline is required to increase skill which allows expressivity. Either without the other is a dead end. Our programs can feature understanding, composition, and performance, with greater student specialization at higher grades.

    Computers and Technology Medium integration

      Effort is made to integrate the development of digital literacy through the curriculum. However, this is not a dominant focus.
      Learn about the different computers and technology approaches  

    • What Avante School says: "Digital literacy" is a misnomer. Is the alternate "Pencil literacy"? Using computers for their own sake is not necessarily productive. Using computers productively to augment human abilities to research, sort, calculate, and store information is a good use of time. Learning practical skills with computers can be part of a wide variety of courses, but not at the expense or exclusion of everything else.

    • Program covers:

      Subject = offered
      Computer science
      Web design

    Physical Education
    • What Avante School says: With small classes and often mixed grades we cannot offer full-contact sports at this time. PE and DPA classes focus on personal health, fair play, skill development, coordination, and the practice of a living a healthy lifestyle that includes adequate movement. PE classes use public recreation spaces such as people outside of school might use, so that the transition to lifelong healthy living is more natural.

    Sex and Health Education British Columbia curriculum
    Topics covered in sex and health education: This information is not currently available.

    What Avante School says: We acknowledge the different needs of different families, but use the BC curriculum as our default if there are no special parent requests. When issues come up naturally in any grade we will discuss them with age-appropriate language, but also recognize when topics are uncomfortable or inappropriate for specific students. We share knowledge that can be of benefit to the students without forcing uncomfortable awarenesses at inappropriate ages for specific students. Not everyone needs to know the same thing at the same time.

    Mostly value-neutral

    By and large, we teach sex education free of any particular moral or ethical standpoint. We try not to impose any particular values or value systems (such as social, political, or ideological values) on our students when teaching sex and related issues.

    Fairly value-based

    Sex education is sometimes taught from a particular moral or ethical standpoint. Sometimes particular values or value systems (such as social, political, or ideological values) are invoked when teaching sex and related issues.


    This includes a range of positions. A traditional approach might, for example, go as far as emphasizing the nuclear family and complete abstinence from sex before marriage. Alternatively, this approach might simply involve placing less emphasis on sex outside of the context of marriage and more emphasis on abstinence. Or finally, it might just involve focusing less on sex outside of the context of marriage.


    This might mean more emphasis is placed on the importance of such things as social equality, diversity, and choice in sex education.

    What Avante School says: We adjust the presentation to suit the sensitivities of students (and often parents). However, generally the no-nonsense matter of fact approach has led to no complaints. We do inform parents before broaching sensitive topics.

    Curriculum Pace Student-paced

    • Standard-enriched
    • Accelerated
    • Student-paced

    The main curriculum pace is non-standardized and is HIGHLY responsive to the pacing of individual students, (via differentiated instruction, differentiated assessment, etc). In theory, some students outpace the default/normalized curriculum, while others spend periods "behind schedule" if they need the extra time.

    Flexible pacing:

    Flexible pacing style = offered
    Subject-streaming (tracking)
    Multi-age classrooms as standard
    Ability-grouping (in-class) as common
    Frequent use of cyber-learning (at-their-own-pace)
    Regular guided independent study opportunities
    Differentiated assessment

    What Avante School says about flexible pacing: We use as many techniques as we can think of to help each student learn at the optimum pace for them.

    Academic Culture Supportive

    • Rigorous
    • Supportive

    A school with a “supportive” academic culture focuses more on process than short-term outcomes: academic performance is a welcomed side-benefit, but not the driving focus. This does not mean the school lacks standards, or has low expectations for its students: a school can have a supportive academic culture and still light the fire of ambition in its students. It does mean, however, the school provides a less intensive culture than schools with a “rigorous” academic classification, and is focused more simply on instilling a love of learning and life-long curiosity.

    What Avante School says: We support each student in the ways needed to achieve high standards. For some, but not all students, being supportive entails being rigorous. We try to ask from each student what is best for them in the long term. Obviously the goal is to find the best path to success for each student. Some need reassurance, others need strict goals set of them. We do not believe that being rigorous and supportive are at all mutually exclusive.

    Developmental Priorities Intellectual, Balanced

    Primary Developmental Priority: Intellectual
    Academically strong, creative, and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions.

    Secondary Developmental Priority: Balanced
    Equal attention is paid to a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social, and physical.

    What Avante School says: All of these are important. Our students graduate as varied as they are when they come to us, but it is our sincere hope that they leave us with a better understanding of themselves and the world around them, a better ability to use that understanding to solve their problems and those of others, and a better sense of their ability to contribute to the global community in their own way. This usually includes being able to do their best in academic and arts courses.

    Special Needs Support Withdrawal Assistance

    Withdrawal Assistance

    Students remain in a regular classroom for most of the day, but are pulled out for extra support from a qualified special education teacher.

    • Academic Support:
      Support Type = offered
      Learning strategy and study counselling; habit formation
      Extra support and minor accommodations for children experiencing subclinical difficulties
    • Mild but clinically diagnosed ADHD
      Support Type = offered
      Extra support
    • What Avante School says: We adapt our expectations, methodologies, and pacing as needed by each student. A wide variety of special needs, including gifted and twice exceptional students, are accommodated without any stigma, and without leaving the regular class. Sensory and emotional issues, ASD, ADHD, written output issues, and several disabilities have been successfully accommodated in a comfortable and caring manner. We do also have the ability to implement pull out programs, but these rarely seem to be needed.

    • Support for moderate-to-severe special needs:
      Special needs
      ADHD (moderate to severe)
      Learning disabilities
      Dyslexia (Language-Based Learning Disability)
      Auditory Processing Disorder (APD)
      Language Processing Disorder
      Nonverbal Learning Disorders (NLD)
      Visual Perceptual/Visual Motor Deficit
      Asperger's Syndrome
      Down syndrome
      Intellectual disability
      Williams syndrome
      Behavioral and Emotional
      Troubled behaviour / troubled teens
      Clinical Depression
      Clinical anxiety
      Suicidal thoughts
      Drug and alcohol abuse
      Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
      Multiple sclerosis
      Cerebral palsy
      Muscular dystrophy
      Spina Bifida
      Dyspraxia (Developmental Coordination Disorder)
      Cystic Fibrosis
      Multiple physical
    • Forms of support delivery:
      Support Type = offered
      A regular class with indirect support
      A regular class with resource assistance
      A regular class with withdrawal assistance
      A special education class with partial integration
      A full-time special education class
    • Additional Support:
      Support Type = offered
      Social skills programs
      Occupational therapy
      Speech-language therapy
    • Summary: We do our best to meet the needs of every student. However, we are a small school, so there are some resources we just don't have. If you have a significant need, please ask about it. We're pretty good at finding solutions that work.

    Gifted Learner Support Dedicated gifted class

    Dedicated gifted programs:

    Program = offered
    Full-time gifted program (parallel to rest of school)
    Part-time gifted program (pull-out; parallel to rest of class)

    Curriculum delivery: Acceleration and enrichment (There is an equal emphasis on acceleration and enrichment.)

    In-class adaptations:
    Practice = offered
    Custom subject enrichment (special arrangement)
    Custom curriculum compacting (special arrangement)
    Guided independent study (custom gifted arrangement)
    Cyber-learning opportunities (custom gifted arrangement)
    Formalized peer coaching opportunities (specifically for gifted learners to coach others)
    Custom subject acceleration (special arrangement)
    Career exploration (custom gifted arrangement)
    Project-based learning (custom gifted arrangement)
    Mentorships (custom gifted arrangement)

    What Avante School says: This is one of our specialties. Tell us what you want - we haven't said "no" yet!

    Gifted education: If you want to learn more about gifted education, check out our comprehensive guide. It’s the first of its kind: it covers different kinds of gifted schools and programs, and a whole host of issues parents face in finding the right option for their gifted child.

    Homework Policy

    In grade 12, Avante School students perform an average of 2 hours of homework per night.

    Nightly Homework
    Avante School 0 mins0 mins0 mins0 mins15 mins30 mins30 mins45 mins60 mins120 mins
    Site Average24 mins29 mins34 mins40 mins53 mins57 mins69 mins80 mins95 mins108 mins

    Report Card Policy

    How assessments are delivered across the grades:

    Lettered or numbered grades3 to 12
    Prose (narrative)-based feedback3 to 12
    Academic achievement reporting3 to 12
    Habits and behaviour reporting3 to 12
    Parent-teacher meetings3 to 12

    Class Sizes Not available

    This information is not currently available.


    What Avante School says:
    • Tell us what YOU want: Its possible!
    • Role playing and Strategy games too

    • Sports OfferedCompetitiveRecreational
      Ice Hockey
      Track & Field
      Martial Arts
    • Clubs Offered
      Art Club
      Astronomy Club
      Chess Club
      Community Service
      Computer Club
      Dance Club
      Debate Club
      Drama Club
      Environmental Club
      Jazz Ensemble
      Math Club
      Musical theatre/Opera
      Online Magazine
      Outdoor Club
      Outdoor Education
      Robotics club
      School newspaper
      Science Club

    Tuition & Financial Aid


    Day Day (International)
    Day (International)$13,500
    What Avante School says: Our Base tuition is $8500, but we have a variety of need-based, and merit-based discounts and financial aid available. Now that we have a new larger campus, its the perfect time to try us at a reduced rate.


    Discount TypeEnrollment TypeAmount
    Early paymentall students$500
    2nd child (sibling)all students50%

    Need-based financial aid

    Grade range that need-based aid is offered: 3 to 12
    Percentage of grade-eligible students receiving financial aid50%
    Average aid package size$4,500
    Percentage of total enrollment on financial aid50%
    Total aid available$50,000

    Application Deadline:
    Rolling deadline

    More information:

    Application Details:

    This school works with other. for processing financial applications
    A one page letter of request, and interview with the principal, is all that us needed. Please ask.

    Merit based Scholarships

    Avante Scholar Award
    Amount: $6,000
    Deadline: Rolling
    Eligibility Details: Students grade 4 to 12—

    Students with gifts in writing, speaking, citizenship, the Arts, or Sciences are welcome to apply with a one page letter.

    Application Details:

    Speak with principal for details. Application for financial aid is through a one page letter of request.

    For more details, visit: avanteschool.ca/enjoy-learning/financial-aid/


    Total enrollment Varies
    Average enrollment per gradeVaries
    Average class size4 to 8
    Gender (grades)Gr. 2 to Gr. 12 (Coed)
    Boarding offeredNo

    Student distribution:

    Day Enrollment4313224124



    Admissions Assessments:

    Assessment = requiredGrades
    Interview3 - 12
    SSAT (out of province)
    Entrance Exam(s)
    Entrance Essay
    Application Fee 

    Application Deadlines:

    Day students:
    July 31, 2016

    What Avante School says: This information is not currently available.


    Acceptance Rate:


    Type of student Avante School is looking for: This information is not currently available.

    Day Homestay

    Student Entry Points

    Student Type23456789101112
    Day Acceptance
    (Acceptance rate)
    Homestay Acceptance
    (Acceptance rate)

    University Placement

    Services = offered
    Career planning
    Mentorship Program
    University counseling
    Key Numbers
    Average graduating class sizeN/A
    *Canadian "Big 6" placementsN/A
    **Ivy+ placementsN/A

    *Number of students in 2015 who attended one of McGill, U of T, UBC, Queen's University, University of Alberta, or Dalhousie University.

    **Number of students since 2005 that attended one of Harvard, Yale, Princeton, University of Pennsylvania, Dartmouth, Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Stanford, University of Chicago, Oxford or Cambridge (UK)

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