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Crescent School

2365 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M2L 1A2

Grades (Gender):
Gr. 3 to Gr. 12 (Boys)
Main Language:
Avg. Class Size:
15 to 20
Day: 743 (Gr. 3 - 12)

School Address
2365 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M2L 1A2



About this school:


Crescent School has been a leader in boys’ education since 1913. Our mission, Men of Character from Boys of Promise, recognizes every student's potential, enabling each boy to seize all the possibilities associated with his unique abilities. Character development is in our DNA. We are committed to mentoring, role modelling and relational learning – areas which bring out the best in boys. Each boy has mentors, teachers, coaches and specialists who invest the time to ensure he feels known, valued and recognized as an individual. Our rigorous learning environment develops character through academics, arts, athletics, business, outreach and robotics. Our expertise is supported by exceptional resources, including high-tech learning spaces, modern libraries, a professionally equipped theatre and state-of-the-art athletic facilities. A supportive community of parents and alumni, who are committed to the continual progress of our School, enriches the experience of every Crescent boy. — Visit school website



User-submitted reviews   

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"Life at Crescent is very healthy, fulfilling and meaningful."
Claire Chen - Parent   (Jun 21, 2018)
The character education is very unique and useful. There are four pillars— Respect, Responsibility...

Our Take: Crescent School

our takeOne of the chief benefits of a gender specific school is the provision of opportunities for students to resist the stereotypes that they would encounter in co-ed schools. Crescent, of course, addresses the specific needs of boys around learning and development, though that experiential piece is equally important: to maintain an environment in which boy’s attention and curiosity can be actively engaged, and where they can participate in all curricular areas outside of any need to impress others or gain status across gender lines. Crescent begins, as they say, from the understanding that "when you remove girls from the classroom, some remarkable things can happen." And they’re right to. They also have a long tradition of doing just that. The ideal student is one who is academically curious, has broad potential, and could benefit from increased opportunity to express both their curiosity and their potential.

Principal's Message


Michael Fellin, Headmaster

Congratulations on embarking on your journey to find the right school for your son. It is undoubtedly one of the most important decisions you will ever make as a parent.

I am so pleased that you have chosen to include Crescent School as part of your consideration. Everyone at our School looks forward to the possibility of providing your son with the support he needs to become a courageous young Man of Character who will make a positive impact on this ever-changing world.

Crescent is truly a unique place for your son to learn, grow and thrive. Now in our second century, we remain one of the top independent schools for boys in Canada, built on a solid foundation of brotherhood and an unwavering focus on character.

Our mission, Men of Character from Boys of Promise, recognizes that boys with curious minds and open hearts have the potential to develop in a manner that will fit their mission in life, whatever it might be.

Each day, your son will be immersed in an enriched learning environment that is driven by a relevant curriculum of study. His growth will be fostered through relationships with teachers and mentors who understand the distinct challenges and complexities of boys’ growth and development.

We are a School that takes great pride in the strength of our community of alumni and parents; and we are steadfastly dedicated to ensuring Crescent reflects the rich cultural diversity of the Toronto of today.

We look forward to welcoming you and your family to our campus and to our community.


Curriculum Traditional

Primary Curriculum: Traditional

What Crescent School says: A Crescent education is exciting, fulfilling and broad. Our curriculum is taught by highly motivated teachers who understand that establishing a relationship with a boy unlocks the door to learning and engages him in his character development. At Crescent, we exceed the overall and specific expectations of the Ontario Ministry of Education and then enrich each subject level to challenge our students. Throughout your boy’s Crescent education, he will be exposed to a multi-faceted landscape that allows him to find his true passions and the learning skills that work best for him. He will be celebrated for both his work and work ethic and guided on his journey to becoming a Man of Character.

  • Approach:

  • Pedagogies and subject courses:

  • Mathematics Traditional Math

      Traditional Math typically teaches a method or algorithm FIRST, and THEN teaches the applications for the method. Traditional algorithms are emphasized and practiced regularly: repetition and drills are frequently used to ensure foundational mastery in the underlying mathematical procedures. The traditional approach to math views math education as akin to building a logical edifice: each brick depends on the support of the previously laid ones, which represent mastery over a particular procedure or method. Traditional Math begins by giving students a tool, and then challenges students to practice using that tool an applied way, with progressively challenging problems. In this sense Traditional Math aims to establish procedural understanding before conceptual and applied understanding.
      Learn about the different mathematics approaches  

    • What Crescent School says: In Grades 3-6, our math curriculum is one grade-level ahead of the Ontario Ministry of Education expectations. It combines daily math drill and problem-solving activities with the Math Makes Sense textbook series and Crescent School-created math curricula. In Grades 9-12, we strive to challenge and support a wide range of aptitudes and abilities. Our program is streamed in Grade 9 into regular and enriched math. Students in the regular stream are given a strong foundation. Extra help is easily and widely available. Most of our students take two of the three Grade 12 math courses. For students in the enriched stream, there is a heavy emphasis on problem solving and math contests, leading to the opportunity to take AP Statistics and AP Calculus.

    • Textbooks and supplementary materials: Math Makes Sense, MathPower Series, Functions 11 (Nelson), Enriched Functions/Relations (Harcourt), Data Management 12 (McGraw-Hill), Advanced Functions 12 (McGraw-Hill), Calculus & Vectors ((McGraw-Hill Ryerson), Single Variable Calculus (Brooks/Cole)

    • Calculator policy: Regular stream: non-graphing scientific calculators are always permitted and a graphic calculator is permitted in certain courses. Enriched stream: TI-83 and 84 are recommended and any calculator allowed on AP exams is permitted in Grade 12 courses.

    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 Crescent School says: Crescent School begins at Grade 3. We offer an enriched, balanced literacy program to all of our students. A variety of reading tests are used to ascertain each student's individual reading level in order to create a personalized literacy curriculum.

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

    • What Crescent 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 Crescent School says: For Grades 3-6, Crescent School's writing program is an enriched curriculum. In addition to teacher-created materials, we use the "Step Up To Writing" program. Cursive writing is taught in Grade 3.

    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: Crescent School's science curriculum is a balance between expository- and inquiry-based learning, with more emphasis on inquiry wherever possible.

    • 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 Crescent School says: ...

    Social Studies Core Knowledge

      Usually focused on teaching history and geography at an early age, the core knowledge approach uses story, drama, reading, and discussion to teach about significant people, places, and events. Breadth of content and knowledge is emphasized. The curriculum is often organized according to the underlying logic of the content: history might be taught sequentially, for example (as students move through the grades).
      Learn about the different social studies approaches  

    • What Crescent School says: ...

    Humanities and Social Sciences Equal Balance

      These programs represent an equal balance between the perennialist and pragmatic approach to teaching the humanities and social sciences.
      Learn about the different humanities and social sciences approaches  

    • What Crescent School says: ...

    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 Crescent School says: Crescent School's foreign language curriculum is based on a teaching philosophy known as the "action-oriented approach." Students are given real-life scenarios in which they learn the language through social interaction (rather than focusing primarily on grammar rules and fill-in-the-blank exercises). In the action-oriented approach, there is a focus on certain vocabulary and grammar rules are taught within the context of the scenario. The scenarios are complemented with materials such as newspaper articles or videos. In addition, the language being learned is used as the language of instruction. Our foreign language curriculum also strives to instill an interest in the cultures to which the languages are tied.

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

    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 Crescent School says: At Crescent, students of all ages are encouraged to take creative risks and explore their artistic abilities. We produce three major drama productions each year in the school's professionally equipped theatre, giving students experience with acting, production and theatre-management roles. In our visual arts program, students are exposed to a broad range of forms, genres and styles. The experience of making art is central to the curriculum. Crescent's music program offers individual and group lessons in a range of musical disciplines. These include senior and junior choirs, chamber choirs, a senior string ensemble, a strings academy, wind bands, a guitar ensemble and chamber groups. Students perform at assemblies, recitals and concerts. Students also perform in music festivals, competitions and performance tours. Crescent also offers a strong media arts/multimedia technology program.

    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 Crescent School says: ...

    • Program covers:

      Subject = offered
      Computer science
      Web design

    Physical Education
    • What Crescent School says: We want our students to appreciate healthy active living, and to understand how living a healthy, active life can enhance all aspects of their lives. We expose them to many different types of athletic activities and exercise, so each student can find something they enjoy doing that they can choose to participate in all their life.

    Advanced Placement Courses
    • AP Physics 1
    • AP Statistics
    • AP Biology
    • AP Calculus AB
    • AP Chemistry
    • AP Computer Science A
    • AP English Literature and Composition
    • AP Human Geography
    • AP Macroeconomics
    • AP Microeconomics

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

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

    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 Crescent School says: Crescent School follows the Ontario Ministry of Education’s curriculum guidelines which include the updated Health Curriculum released in February 2015. We want our students to have accurate information so they can make the most educated decisions for themselves when the time comes.

    Curriculum Pace Standard-enriched

    • Standard-enriched
    • Accelerated
    • Student-paced

    Broadly-speaking, the main curriculum -- like that of most schools -- paces the provincially-outlined one. This pace is steady and set by the teachers and school. The curriculum might still be enriched in various ways: covering topics more in-depth and with more vigor than the provincial one, or covering a broader selection of topics.

    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 Crescent School says about flexible pacing: This information is not currently available.

    Academic Culture Rigorous

    • Rigorous
    • Supportive

    A school with a “rigorous” academic culture places a high value on academic performance, and expects their students to do the same. This does not mean the school is uncaring, unsupportive, or non-responsive -- far from it. A school can have a rigorous academic culture and still provide excellent individual support. It does mean, however, the school places a particular emphasis on performance -- seeking the best students and challenging them to the fullest extent -- relative to a normal baseline. High expectations and standards – and a challenging yet rewarding curriculum – are the common themes here. Keep in mind this classification is more relevant for the older grades: few Kindergarten classrooms, for example, would be called “rigorous”.

    What Crescent School says: At Crescent, we exceed the overall and specific expectations of the Ontario Ministry of Education and then enrich each subject level to challenge our students. Our boys are given ample opportunity to develop as innovative, inquisitive and creative learners. They are celebrated for both their work and their work ethic, and guided academically and emotionally on the journey to becoming a Man of Character.

    Developmental Priorities Balanced

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

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

    Special Needs Support Resource Assistance

    Resource Assistance

    Students remain in a regular classroom for the whole day, and periodically receive break-out support (individually or in small groups) within the classroom 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 Crescent School says: Crescent School offers a rigorous academic curriculum. Students with diagnosed exceptionalities have IEPs with accommodations, but the expectation is that all students at Crescent School will manage the learning expectations on the curriculum.

    • 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: Crescent School welcomes students with exceptional identifications if they can manage the learning expectations with accommodations. Academic support is offered by our learning support specialists in all three divisions of Crescent School, and social-emotional support is offered by our two school social workers.

    Gifted Learner Support In-class adaptations

    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 (The main focus is on acceleration. This means that all students work at a much quicker pace than public school peers (usually working at least one grade-level ahead). )

    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 Crescent School says: Crescent School offers gifted learners support in the form of inclusive practices: special custom arrangements made fr advanced learners who otherwise remain in the regular classroom,

    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, Crescent School students perform an average of >2 hours of homework per night.

    Nightly Homework
    Crescent School 60 mins90 mins120 mins120 mins120 mins160 mins
    Site Average53 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
    Parent-teacher meetings3 to 12

    Class Sizes

    Average class size for each grade:
    Grade 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
    Size n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a


    What Crescent School says:
    • Robotics: Crescent School's robotics team, Team 610, competes in the FIRST Robotics Competition at the world level. In 2013, Team 610 won gold at the FIRST Robotics Competition World Championship. Team 610 continued to perform strongly since then, and in 2017 brought home a silver medal from the World Championship after ranking as the top team in Ontario.
    • Basketball: Crescent School's Senior Basketball team has competed in the OSFSAA AA Championships three years in a row. In 2016, the team finished in 4th place. In 2015, the team earned the silver medal and Team Sportsmanship Award.
    • Rugby: Crescent School's Junior Rugby team reached the CISAA Junior Rugby Championships two years in a row. The team won gold in 2015 and earned silver at the 2016 championships
    • Drama: Each year, Crescent presents three dramatic productions performed by students in the school's professionally equipped theatre. In 2016/2017, the Lower School presented Madagascar Jr., the Middle School presented Lord Of The Flies, and the Upper School presented The Laramie Project.
    • Kids' Lit Quiz: The Crescent School team placed third in Canada at the 2015 Kids' Lit Quiz national finals. Kids' Lit Quiz encourages a love of reading through fun competitions for children aged 10 to 13.
    • Robotics: Crescent's Middle School robotics team reached the VEX IQ World Championships in 2017, placing in the top 25% against 308 teams.
    • DECA: Students on Crescent's Business Team advanced to the DECA international competition in 2017. Competing against 200 teams, six Crescent boys all qualified for the finalist round, with two placing in the Top 10 in their category.
    • Model UN: Crescent boys in the Model UN club participated in the North American Invitational Model United Nations Conference held in Washington, DC in 2017.

    • Sports OfferedCompetitiveRecreational
      Ice Hockey
      Track & Field
      Martial Arts
    • Clubs Offered
      Chess Club
      Community Service
      Debate Club
      Environmental Club
      Jazz Ensemble
      Math Club
      Musical theatre/Opera
      Outdoor Education
      Poetry/Literature club
      Robotics club
      School newspaper
      Science Club
      Student Council

    Tuition & Financial Aid


    What Crescent School says: Crescent School tuition is competitive with fees at other independent schools. Financial assistance is available to all families based on need. Crescent tuition fees of $32,350 (2017/2018) cover most academic expenses, as well as local activities and our lunch program. Additional incidental fees are $1,000 per student on average. These costs are charged to the boy's personal sundry account.

    Need-based financial aid

    Grade range that need-based aid is offered: 7 to 12
    Percentage of grade-eligible students receiving financial aid5%
    Average aid package size$33,770
    Percentage of total enrollment on financial aid3%
    Total aid available$1,030,000

    Application Deadline:
    January 15, 2018 Repeats annually

    More information:

    Application Details:

    This school works with Apple Financial Inc. for processing financial applications

    Merit based Scholarships

    This information is not currently available.


    Total enrollment 743
    Average enrollment per grade74
    Average class size15 to 20
    Gender (grades)Gr. 3 to Gr. 12 (Boys)
    Boarding offeredNo

    Student distribution:

    Day Enrollment28406063848410110110190



    Admissions Assessments:

    Assessment = requiredGrades
    Interview3 - 12
    SSAT8 - 12
    SSAT (out of province)
    Entrance Exam(s)3 - 7
    Entrance Essay
    Application Fee 

    Application Deadlines:

    Day students:
    November 30, 2018

    What Crescent School says:

    Please see the Crescent School website for complete instructions and the online application.

    Particular application requirements:

    • Applicants to Grades 7-12 must complete the online Character Skills Snapshot assessment.
    • Applicants to Grades 10-12 must write the Secondary School Admissions Test (SSAT).
    • Applicants to Grades 3-5, 7 & 9 must attend an assessment morning at Crescent School.


    Acceptance Rate:


    Type of student Crescent School is looking for: We welcome boys from diverse backgrounds who are intellectually curious and eager to learn, and who enjoy a variety of activities outside of academics, such as arts, sports and other pursuits.

    Student Entry Points

    Student Type3456789101112
    Day Acceptance
    (Acceptance rate)
    28 - 32 (50%)8 - 12 (40%)18 - 20 (50%)0 - 3 (25%)18 - 25 (30%)0 - 3 (20%)18 - 22 (35%)0 - 3 (15%)0 - 3 (60%)0 - 3 (10%)

    University Placement

    Services = offered
    Career planning
    Mentorship Program
    University counseling
    Key Numbers
    Average graduating class size87
    *Canadian "Big 6" placements30
    **Ivy+ placements7

    *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)

    Schools our students attend (last 4 years): CANADA: Brock University, Carleton University, University of Guelph, McMaster University, Queen's University, Ryerson University, University of Toronto, University of Waterloo, Western University, Wilfrid Laurier University, York University, Acadia University, Bishop's University, University of British Columbia, Concordia University, Dalhousie University, University of the Fraser Valley, University of King's College, McGill University, University of Victoria UNITED STATES: American University, Babson College, Berklee School of Music, Boston University, Brandeis University, Brown University, University of California Los Angeles, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Chicago, Claremont McKenna College, Colby College, Cornell University, Danton College, Dartmouth College, Denison University, University of Detroit Mercy, Duke University, King University, University of Miami, New York University, Northeastern University, Northwestern University, Parsons School of Design, University of Pennsylvania, Pratt Institute, Rensellar Polytechnic, Rice University, University of Rochester, Santa Clara University, University of Southern California, Syracuse University, Wake Forest University, University of Wisconsin-Madison UNITED KINGDOM/IRELAND: University of St. Andrew's, Royal College of Surgeons - Ireland, University of Exeter, University of Warwick

    What Crescent School says:

  • Crescent School offers a full range of high-calibre university counselling resources to help you and your son navigate each step of the university application process. Our graduates can be found in top universities in Canada, the United States and abroad.

  • Notable Alumni

    Alumnus Graduation Year Accomplishment
    Peter Aceto 1987 Former President and CEO of Tangerine Bank.
    Jason Beck 1989 Grammy-nominated pianist, producer and songwriter who performs as Chilly Gonzales
    Ming Wai Lau 1997 Hong Kong businessman and philanthropist
    Ted Livingston 2005 Founder and CEO of Kik Inc., a mobile communications platform with over 240 million users.
    Neil Lumsden 1971 Professional football player in the Canadian Football League
    Christophe Beck 1987 Emmy Award-winning composer for film and television

    Alumni Highlights

    • Crescent School's alumni mentoring help alumni achieve personal and professional goals. The Professional Mentoring Program connects experienced alumni with younger graduates who are pursuing similar career paths. The University Mentoring Program connects a Crescent Grade 12 student who is entering his first year with an alumnus already enrolled in the same university or university program.
    • Crescent School's Alumni Internship Program connects young Crescent alumni with employers who can offer meaningful summer employment opportunities.

    Stories & Testimonials


    Team 610: Character Growth in Robotics

    Crescent School's Team 610 robotics team celebrated another successful year in 2016/2017. The team won two district tournaments and the Ontario District Championship, accumulated the most points of any Ontario team and finished second in their division at the World Championship. While we are all justly proud of the boys’ success, I am also impressed by the character growth they have shown.

    Robotics is one of Crescent’s Character-in-Action programs. Through our curriculum and also Team 610, we use robots to inspire and engage the boys in learning and to develop and build character.

    Team 610’s success depends on 45 boys working together. They understand that competing against the best in the world requires discipline, hard work, collaboration and a commitment to excellence. After receiving their game challenge in January, the team has seven weeks to design and build a robot. The challenge engages the boys in complex problem solving and critical thinking with real deadlines and consequences.

    Team 610’s executive leadership – a group of Grade 12 boys who lead Team 610’s Business, Marketing and Communication, Design and Manufacturing, Electrical, Strategy and Programming portfolios – are crucial to the team’s overall success.

    The executive did an outstanding job in 2016/2017. They worked extremely hard, balancing their academic commitments and robotics. They pushed each other to achieve more, and held each other accountable. When the executive team members were in Grade 9, they had the fortunate experience of being on Team 610 when it won the World Championship in 2013. Having experienced what it takes to succeed, this year they instilled these principles in our younger team members.

    As I look at the picture of the boys from their Grade 9 year, I remember how eager, yet quiet and nervous, they were when they came into the lab. Now they are running the team, leading meetings, inspiring and teaching their skills to the new boys and teams from all over the world! 

    We may build awesome robots but we develop even better boys. Through robotics, the boys have developed a solid character foundation to build on and become valued contributors to our world.

    Mr. Don Morrison, Crescent School Faculty


    Building Character on the Business Team

    My colleagues and I once asked the Upper School students on Crescent School's Business Team how they thought their activities contributed to character – particularly qualities of grit and resilience that make up performance character. One student’s answer has stayed with me.

    The student, a former leader and CEO of the Business Team, was a popular, well spoken, highly polished presenter who competed at the international levels of DECA, a high school business competition. However, he told us, this was not always the case.

    He said that in Middle School he was, if I was to paraphrase, a “nobody.” Most people wouldn’t even have known his name, he told us, because he was shy, very quiet and a poor speaker. Graduating into the Upper School, he decided to participate in DECA in his Grade 9 year. That fall he competed at the DECA Regional Competition. While others around him qualified for the provincial competition, he did not. Devastated, this student could have quit and never competed again at DECA.

    Instead, he drew upon the grit and determination he needed to practise his presentation and critical thinking skills, studied intensely for the content exam, and returned the following year, resolved and ready. At the DECA Regional Competition, his team qualified for the Provincials. They worked incredibly hard to prepare for the challenge. At Provincials, competing against approximately 200 teams in their category, they finished first overall – an incredibly impressive feat that qualified him for the international-level competition.

    What I learned from his story is that the Business Team does more than inspire a passion for business. It puts our students into challenging situations that allow them to develop their character. That student told us that the Business Team made him who he was, that it taught him that determination, hard work and grit can overcome huge obstacles. The Business Team gave him confidence, helped him socially, and greatly improved his communication and presentation skills.

    Character-building moments happen throughout Crescent – on the fields, in the classroom, the theatre, the Robotics lab, on Outreach trips and even on the Business Team.

    - Mr. Gavin Muranaka, Crescent School Faculty


    Developing Character Through Athletics

    As a phys. ed. teacher and coach, I have the pleasure of playing games for a career. What is most rewarding for me is seeing how athletics can shape a student’s self-worth, confidence, independence and leadership. These are important life skills. It’s remarkable to be part of helping the boys develop their character.

    Whether they are learning or improving the fundamentals in a sport, the boys must trust one another, be honest when challenged in the game and be good sportsmen if facing defeat. This isn’t always easy. I often remind myself that the boys might not have the mental maturity to overcome certain challenges. But I can be wrong about that too.

    In 2016/2017, our boys on the U12 soccer team nearly had a perfect season record. You could say our confidence was a bit too high going into our final CISAA playoffs. That’s when our boys faced defeat for the first time: losing (horrifically) in both of our games and not getting a single goal in either game. It hurt to watch the tears storming down the boys’ faces as their perfect season came to an end. But - and here is where their character came into play - our boys would not let this defeat define their efforts. The team knew they had plenty of accomplishments to be proud of throughout the season. In these moments we find that character - grit, compassion and respect - can help soothe the pain of defeat.

    In everything we do in athletics at Crescent, character is key. Here are some things we think about in my classes - and often the boys will remind each other about these principles:

    • Acknowledge that this is an opportunity to represent your school
    • Participate to try your best and challenge others to be better too
    • Respect your opponents for their skills and technical abilities
    • Respect your referee/officials, coaches and parents for their time and energy
    • Shaking hands is a sign of respect to your opponent and to the sport that you have the privilege to play
    • You will face challenges, sacrifices, and hardships. Be sure to be accountable for you and your team’s actions
    • Teamwork is a life skill, something that you can become better at
    • To not forget the importance of a growth mindset
    • Having fun and smiling can be part of competition

    As I teach and coach our younger Crescent boys, I enjoy watching them develop their character through athletics. The lessons that the boys learn during our drills, practices and games will inevitably shape the Men of Character that they will become.

    - Mr. Justin Chau, Crescent School Faculty


    Introducing Crescent's Middle School

    Crescent’s Middle School is where boys in Grades 7 and 8 begin their journey into manhood. It’s a time of personal growth and discovery, as Boys of Promise take the first steps to becoming Men of Character.

    Our Middle School vision reflects an insightful, research-driven understanding of early adolescent boys and what makes them unique. For boys of this age, relationships matter most; therefore our mentor program is at the heart of the Middle School culture. Through mentoring, we build positive connections and foster the growth of meaningful relationships between the boys and the faculty. It is our priority to help our boys become resilient, curious, collaborative and adaptive learners.

    - Dr. Sandra Boyes, Head of Lower and Middle School
    In the Middle School, the boys are exposed to diverse academic and co-curricular programs that allow them to discover their passions and talents. These programs are challenging, supportive and are always connected to our mission and our four core values of Respect, Responsibility, Honesty and Compassion.

    At Crescent’s Middle School, your son will be given the opportunity to grow as a student, athlete, artist and, most importantly, a Man of Character.

    Dr. Sandra Boyes, Head of Lower and Middle School


    Introducing Crescent's Lower School

    Creating Men of Character from Boys of Promise begins in the Lower School for boys in Grades 3 to 6. A Crescent education is exciting, fulfilling and broad. It challenges each boy intellectually, artistically and athletically through rigorous and creative curriculum and an extensive co-curricular program.

    The Lower School has an exciting Character Education program that models and recognizes exemplary student behaviour.

    The Crescent School curriculum offers its students an advanced academic experience. Our faculty members are dedicated and caring professionals and specialists in their areas. Our goal in the Lower School is to provide your son with rich academic, artistic and athletic opportunities, so that he can refine his natural talents, and exceed his self-imposed limitations.

    Dr. Sandra Boyes, Head of Lower and Middle School


    Introducing Crescent's Upper School

    Crescent’s Upper School is small by design: 90 students in each of Grades 9 through 12. This allows us to know and understand each student for who he is and to provide the programs and support that respond to his individual needs, strengths, goals and passions. I am proud of our talented and dedicated faculty. Each teacher serves as mentor to a small group of students, providing guidance and support throughout their time in the Upper School. Our academic program is rigorous within a highly supportive environment. Our students are prepared not only to gain acceptance to selective university programs, but to thrive beyond admission.

    We expect all students to develop the invaluable habit of engagement. With wide-ranging co-curricular programs in the arts, athletics, robotics, business studies and politics, as well as a comprehensive outreach program with local, national and international opportunities, we believe that each student can find his passion and become fully immersed in the life of his school and of the broader community. Our goal is that each student discover his best self and find the courage to make it active in service to others.

    Crescent's structure, with three school divisions – Lower, Middle and Upper – in one campus, provides abundant and meaningful leadership and mentoring opportunities for senior students, who take responsibility for many aspects of school life.

    Through scholarship, engagement and leadership, and with the encouragement and support of dedicated teachers, we challenge our students to become Men of Character from Boys of Promise.

    - Mr. Nick Kovacs, Head of Upper School


    A Letter and a Choice

    [Excerpts from speech given at Crescent School's Opening Assembly on September 7, 2017.]

    We often talk about our Crescent journey starting on our first day of school. While that’s absolutely an important milestone in it, I’d argue that this journey starts a bit earlier. In my case, it began with my acceptance letter. There was no big celebration or parade in my honour, just a letter and, eventually, my choice to come to Crescent. At the time I was happy and excited, but I’d be lying if I said that I understood what that letter, and my response to it, would lead to.

    That letter would turn out to be a call to adventure that would change my life, just as I’m sure will happen for all of you if it hasn’t already. It has been a key for me to open up so many incredible doors and access countless opportunities that I could have only dreamed of otherwise. It has been an invitation to meet hundreds of amazing people whom I now can’t begin to imagine living without. It’s taken me my entire Crescent career so far to grasp the significance of that letter, and my choice in response to it, but now, I can thank my lucky stars for being that letter’s recipient, and I can thank myself for making that decision – the best decision of my life....

    When I first came to Crescent in Grade 7, I felt quite nervous. I had said my farewells to the simplicity and comfort of elementary school, and I was coming into a new, much larger school, where I knew no one…but that’s not to say I was alone. I was surrounded by friendly faces, eager and willing to help me out with the challenges of such a life-changing transition. Wherever I turned, there were the outstretched arms of classmates, teachers, mentors and administrators, all happy to lend a hand when I was in need.

    Here, We All Belong

    Within the first few weeks of being at Crescent, I became well acquainted with the astounding sense of community that had so strongly drawn me to here in the first place. Here, we all belong, and this sense of brotherhood is vital to our Crescent identity.

    By the end of my first year at Crescent, I was eagerly looking forward to another five with the same amazing people that had instilled me with the infectious sense of school pride that I carry with me every day. I had truly become part of a family, one that would encourage me to strive for excellence and look out for my brothers, and one that would provide a tremendous amount of support for me on my journey through Crescent.

    Today, it’s with honour that I say Crescent feels like home to me. I can come to school in the morning thinking or feeling anything I want, but by the end of the day, you’ll never see me going home without a smile on my face. No matter what happens here every day, we each have our Crescent brothers, our teachers and our mentors to go through it all together.

    Invaluable Life Lessons

    It was with the great people I met here that I learned some invaluable life lessons that have stuck with me to this day. I’ve learned that what you put in, is what you get out. When you’re passionate about something, work hard at it and your accomplishments will be your rewards. Another lesson that I think about all the time, is that you can’t do it all alone. Yes, it’s true, we want to be able to do it all ourselves, but trying to take on an assortment of different challenges without help can be very overwhelming. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your brothers for support when you need it, that’s what they’re here for.

    One of the most important, and sad, things that I’ve discovered over the past five years, is that your time at Crescent will be over in what feels like the blink of an eye. It doesn’t matter if you’re in the grad class with me, with only one year left, or you’re just starting Grade 3, with your entire Crescent journey ahead of you, your time at this amazing school will be all too short. As someone who’s nearing the finish line of their time at Crescent, the best advice I can give to everyone in this room is to take advantage of the opportunities you have right now, and make every precious moment count.

    Now Is The Time

    For this reason, our Grad class has adopted the motto: Now is the time. This motto is a call to action for everyone here, a rallying cry for us all to take full advantage of the present and the opportunities that we have in front of us right now. Yes, it always feels easier to wait a little while longer before doing something that we have on our minds, but we don’t have to take the easiest path on our Crescent journey. We’re all capable of seizing each day here, and making sure that valuable opportunities don’t pass us by.

    In this grad motto, there’s a component of individuality as well. Yes, now is the time, but it’s for you all to decide what you want to do with it. Take action in your own way, in a way that you genuinely care about, and in a way that benefits your brothers, and your school. While we ask everyone at Crescent to make this year count, I have some individual messages as well that I’d like to share with you today.

    To the Lower and Middle Schools, continue to display the energy, curiosity and compassion that you’re admired for. This is a time in your life where you’ll learn, grow and mature quite a bit, but more than anything, it’s a time that’s meant to be enjoyed. With your brothers by your side to support you and your teachers close by to guide you, you’ll never be alone. As long as you put yourself out there, you’ll be able to build friendships that will last until the end of your Crescent career and beyond, and create memories that you’ll never forget. You guys still have the majority of your time at Crescent left ahead of you, but it’s never too early to start. Take advantage of the opportunities around you to hone your skills, and share your talents. Transform your big dreams into reality, you’ve got all the tools you need for it.

    To my peers in the Upper School, these final years at Crescent may be some of the toughest for you, but they will absolutely be the most rewarding. Take risks, and don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, as that’s the place that you’ll have the most impactful and memorable experiences. You may not always have the success you were hoping for when trying someone new, but learning from a failure is still valuable, and you shouldn’t lose sleep over small mistakes you make while taking risks. Besides, you guys will have plenty of more important things to lose sleep over. With the potential for failure that we have to accept, we’ll need someone to catch us if we fall, so always have each others’ backs, and know that someone has yours.

    To the faculty and staff, you’re at the center of what makes this school so great, and you’re essential to shaping the experience of Crescent students. You not only teach and coach us, but you guide us, inspire us and care about us. You keep our school clean, safe and well-maintained and you’re responsible for the great lunches we have here every day. Whenever I’ve needed it, the mentorship of a staff member has always been within arms’ reach. Whether it’s in the classroom, on the field or the court, in the lab, the CCL, the cafeteria or simply in the hallways, you all have an unbelievably positive impact on the lives of Crescent students and we can’t thank you all enough for everything you do for us.

    To those of you who are just joining the Crescent community now, either as a member of the student body, or the Crescent faculty, welcome. Believe me, if it hasn’t already happened, it won’t be long before you truly feel at home here. You’ll become a part of this Crescent family in no time.

    To the grads, it’s been a hell of a ride. As our time at this schools nears its end, I hope that you’re all as proud to be a part of this grad class as I am. As a grade, we’re incredibly diverse in our talents and interests, not to mention extremely caring and loyal to one another. I can say, without a doubt in my mind, that there’s not a better group of guys I could have picked to spend my time at Crescent with. More than anyone else here, our time is now, so let’s make this last year count, and at its end, let’s be proud to have become Men of Character together.

    There's No Shortage Of Ways To Get Involved

    In closing, I’d like to remind you all that at Crescent, there’s no shortage of ways to get involved. Just as I was, you were all the recipients of acceptance letters to Crescent and you chose to come here for a reason. So I know that you have the potential to do something meaningful with your time here, and this year, let’s focus on making that happen. Let’s work hard, be resilient and use the resources around us to have the success that I know we’re all capable of achieving. When someone asks us what school we go to, let’s answer “Crescent,” and let’s make sure we can do it with humble pride.

    I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish this year, from academics, to the arts, to athletics, leadership, community service, robotics, and beyond, and I hope that you’re all just as excited to start as I am. This year will be a year of proactivity and initiative. We won’t be procrastinating, or waiting endlessly to take action, because I cannot be more genuine when I tell you all that now is the time.

    Thank you for listening, and I hope you all have a fantastic school year.


    Learning How to Become a Master Teacher

    What does a Master Teacher look like? That question was posed to me a few years ago by now-retired Headmaster Geoff Roberts. Put on the spot, I muddled through a response as best I could. It was an idea that I hadn’t thought much about at that time. In hindsight, I wish I was given more time to provide a thoughtful answer and the question has rolled around in my head ever since.

    Crescent School has partnered with accomplished education researcher Victoria Marsick of Teachers College, Columbia University, to explore this question in more depth. Dr. Marsick’s three-year research project is examining teaching practices in boys’ schools around the world, including Crescent. Recently, Upper School faculty member Aggie Maksimowska and I had the opportunity to participate in this research with other teachers at the Aspiring Master Teacher Workshop that was hosted by the International Boys’ Schools Coalition. It was held at the Buckley School in New York City in January.

    At the workshop, we were split into small groups that consisted of four or five teachers who are at various stages in their teaching careers. Our task was to begin to examine teaching as a profession and be reflective about our own personal practice. We considered ideas such as building relationships, building classroom climate and situational judgment (how we respond to situations with mastery). We brainstormed characteristics of master teachers, such as authenticity, good humour, flexibility and passion, among many others. It was amazing to see the diversity of thinking about how people defined mastery. At the end of these discussions I began to realize that becoming a master teacher is not about squeezing myself into the mold that I thought a master teacher should be. Instead, it is about learning how to be effective given my teaching style, personality and the situation I am in at an independent boys’ school.

    On my long trip home from New York (thanks to the “storm of the century”), I had some time to reflect on how lucky I am to be have such a strong network of experienced peers at Crescent who are able to support my ongoing journey as an “aspiring master teacher.” The entire Crescent faculty is on this journey together and becoming more intentional in our efforts to identify challenges and supports for our continuing journey as aspiring master teachers. I think this is an exciting opportunity for Crescent School.

    - Ian Fisher, Crescent School Faculty


    Outreach: Transforming Lives and Building Character

    It is my personal belief that Outreach transforms lives, not only for the person who may receive our help, but also our own. At Crescent School we promise parents that we will help turn their sons into Men of Character. We do this through academics, artistic and athletic programs, and also through our strong emphasis on outreach.

    Each outreach activity provides our boys with time to engage with and reflect on the world around them. Creating opportunities for young men to get involved and reach beyond their comfort zones also creates opportunities for character building.

    For example, Grade 8 student Marcel says the Right to Play program at Driftwood Public School made him more understanding and empathetic. Marcel had recognized what he had in common with Imran, a Grade 1 student at Driftwood. Imran liked to disappear behind the classroom furniture. His teacher viewed Imran’s behaviour as disobedience. But Marcel remembered living behind the bookshelf himself at that age. All he wanted to do was escape into the pages of a good book. By being able to empathize, Marcel made a connection with Imran that adults did not. To see the joy on each boy’s face when they meet is one of the reasons outreach is so powerful. Imran will never forget the kindness that Marcel, his new “best friend,” has shown him. Marcel will always remember what he calls “his second chance at passing Grade 1.”

    Outreach also builds respect and compassion. Recently, all Grade 7 students visited the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Centre. This hospital for children with physical disabilities and injuries also operates a full-time school. Our boys worked with the Holland Bloorview students in their therapy sessions and physical education classes, and took part in a disability workshop.

    Each boy was transformed by the experience. They were so happy bonding with their new friends that they didn’t notice – or perhaps just didn’t care – about the physical differences. I heard comments from our boys such as, “Wow, did you hear that little girl, Ms. Murray? She is so funny!” Not one mention of the little girl’s prosthetic legs. Our students left Holland Bloorview with a lot more understanding of people with disabilities. They discovered that they were all the same, despite the physical differences: they all wanted to win at wheelchair basketball or goof off while the teacher was talking.

    These are just two examples of outreach activities at Crescent. Whether it’s a food drive for the Daily Bread Food Bank, a bake sale to raise funds for earthquake victims, or weekly tutoring sessions at local public schools, the Crescent community is always getting involved. We do this because we want the boys to be confident in their ability to make a difference. We want our boys to ask questions and be understanding of different people and situations. We want them to break down barriers and eliminate fear. And we want our boys to learn how to adapt and be flexible, because life doesn’t always follow a scripted timetable the way it does here at school.

    Outreach activities give our boys the exposure necessary to understand the big wide world in which they live, providing some of the tools our boys need to become the Men of Character who will build a better tomorrow.

    - Ms. Sheryl Murray, Faculty Member, Crescent School


    In the News


    June 6, 2018 - Crescent School Enjoys First-Place Result at DECA Internationals

    Two Crescent School student won the top spot in their category at the DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC) in April. ...

    May 28, 2018 - Three Crescent School graduates earn prestigious merit scholarships

    Among the many university scholarships awarded to Crescent School graduates this year, three stand out. ...

    May 24, 2018 - Prime Minister’s Award for Crescent School Teacher Michael Jansen

    Crescent School faculty member Michael Jansen receives Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence ...


    • Canadian Accredited Independent Schools (CAIS) Associations
    • The Conference of Independent Schools of Ontario (CIS) Associations
    • International Boys Schools Coalition (IBSC) Associations

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