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Delta West Academy

414 11 A Street NE, Calgary, Alberta, T2E 4P3

Liberal Arts
Grades (Gender):
JK to Gr. 12 (Coed)
$9,900 to 17,550/year
Main Language:
Avg. Class Size:
10 to 12
Day: Varies (Gr. JK - 12)

School Address
414 11 A Street NE, Calgary, Alberta, T2E 4P3

About this school:


At Delta West Academy, we instill an "I can do that" attitude, called self-efficacy, in our students so they are inspired to be life-long achievers. They thrive in programs that are highly interactive yet academically rigorous, ultimately rewarding exploration and commitment. They are challenged in a dynamic journey of academic excellence, social intelligence and global citizenship. The result? A 98% transition of DWA graduates to university & colleges of their choice. Launch your child's inspired journey at DWA. — Visit school website



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Our Take: Delta West Academy

our take

Delta West was established in 1993 in order to provide families with something different, something new, within Calgary’s educational landscape. First located downtown, the school moved to its current location in 1998 in order to build programming and to accommodate a growing student body. Typically, when schools talk about bringing something new to the table, they often are thinking of all the things that fall under the umbrella of 21st century literacies: facility with technology, collaborative learning, student-driven inquiry, a focus on rhetoric and logic over rote learning. Delta West addresses all those things, though the focus, too, has been to consider the physical aspects of learning—the value of active learning, both within athletic and classroom settings. The classroom furniture is an indication of how the school approaches the learner in that regard; students can choose, for example, movement chairs, standing desks, or more traditional furniture. For many students, that’s a big deal. Movement, even very subtle movement, can help stimulate engagement and keep students on task. Again, that’s just one aspect of the school, but it’s an instructive one; Delta West has a history of working with students to increase engagement with the curriculum and with peers, and therein lies the school’s success. The ideal student is one looking for something different, and who will thrive in a very interactive, diverse, and stimulating environment.  

School busing:

Delta West Academy offers bus transferring. Service options offered are regular rider, regular rider AM only, regular rider PM only. The regions it offers busing from are Calgary.

Principal's Message


Mrs. Carola Tiltmann, Principal

There is only one Delta West Academy.   Why should you care about that?  For the same reason that you care about your child’s school experience…your child is unique and so is what DWA offers.

We instill an “I can do that” attitude in all of our students.  Dr. Alberta Bandura calls it “self-efficacy: a person’s belief in his or her ability to succeed in a particular situation”.  Students develop this belief when they experience success over and over again in all areas…academically and socially, at school and globally, in their sports teams, debate teams and volunteer teams. It is a belief nurtured, modelled and put into practice by our staff when they seek out interesting science projects like building thermometers, introduce a Grade 4 class to SCUBA diving, have a high school Biology class watch a live knee operation via video link, or spend time after school helping a student refine their test preparation strategies.

At DWA, it means students recognizing that every challenge has an approach angle and once it’s figured out, it is not really a challenge anymore, just another opportunity to succeed. It means developing strong problem solving skills whether that is tackling an algebra problem or a spat with a friend.  It means bouncing back from failure secure in the knowledge that mistakes are a means of advancing learning whether that is a better story, a truly resonant stage performance or more soccer practice. It means school experiences as unique as your child. 

Visit Delta West Academy and imagine your child on an inspired journey.


Curriculum Liberal Arts

Primary Curriculum: Liberal Arts

What Delta West Academy says: At Delta West Academy, students are provided with a well-rounded and enriching educational experience. Teachers create a learning environment that is exploratory with many active learning experiences and numerous field trips through all of the grades including high school. Students are in small classes to promote discussion, questioning and collaborative group work. Critical to their interactions with students, teachers encourage a growth mind set - an \"I can do that\" attitude and behaviours that reinforce persistence, critical thinking and problem solving for the achievement of academic excellence. The curriculum is based on the Alberta Program of Studies though enriched with second languages (French or Spanish), fine and performance arts, and physical education as mandatory components of the program from Kindergarten through Grade 12.

  • 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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    • Textbooks and supplementary materials: This information is not currently available.

    • Calculator policy: This information is not currently available.

    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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    • DIBELS Testing: This school periodically uses DIBELS testing to assess reading progress.

    • What Delta West Academy 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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    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: This information is not currently available.

    • 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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    Social Studies Expanding Communities

      The Expanding Communities approach organizes the curriculum around students’ present, everyday experience. In the younger grades, students might learn about themselves, for example. As they move through the grades, the focus gradually broadens in scope: to the family, neighbourhood, city, province, country, and globe. The curriculum tends to have less focus on history than Core Knowledge programs.
      Learn about the different social studies approaches  

    • What Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    Foreign Languages Communicative

      The communicative method of language acquisition emphasizes the use of the target language in authentic contexts. The approach commonly features interactive group work, games, authentic texts, and opportunities to learn about the cultural background of the language. Drills and quizzes may still be used, but less frequently than with the audio-lingual method.
      Learn about the different foreign languages approaches  

    • What Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    • Languages Offered: • French • Spanish

    Fine Arts Creative

      Creative arts programs are studio-driven. While historical works and movements may still be taught to add context to the program, students mainly engage in making art (visual, musical, theatrical, etc). The goal is use the actual practice of art to help educate students’ emotions, cognition, and ethos.
      Learn about the different fine arts approaches  

    • Program offers:

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

    • What Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    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 Delta West Academy says: Digital literacy at DWA is a core competency skill which is supported by a fully wireless environment and digital devices in all of the classrooms. The use of devices is increasingly personalized as the students progress through the grades. In Kindergarten to Grade 2, students use iPads primarily for independent skills practice at given times. By Grade 3, students are assigned a personal laptop which is now also used for research, presentations and writing as the students progress through the next grades. From Grades 6 to 9, students are able to take the laptops home. In high school, students choose their own devices and use them in an independent and responsible manner to advance their own learning needs. Ultimately, technological devices such as laptops, are viewed as tools that enable students to acquire and practice core learning skills.

    • Program covers:

      Subject = offered
      Computer science
      Web design

    Physical Education
    • What Delta West Academy says: DWA's philosophy about PE is grounded in the belief that all students require physical activity and the opportunity to participate in sports regardless of their ability and skill level. Sportsmanship, individual skill development and exposure to a wide variety of sports characterize DWA's athletics program. PE is important enough to have extended hours for all grades and is a required course from Kindergarten to Grade 12. Many of the sports modules are conducted off campus at recognized sports facilities such as the Canada Olypmic Park, Repsol Sports Centre, University of Calgary, etc. At these venues, certified instructors along with our PE teachers challenge the children to explore their physical personality with diverse activities that stretch their physical and mental boundaries reaching for new levels of fitness and skill. Sports Performance is a Boutique Option for Grade 4 - 9 focusing on mental and well as physical training..

    Advanced Placement Courses
    • AP Spanish Language
    • AP English Literature and Composition
    • AP French Language

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

    What Delta West Academy 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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    Preschool/K Curriculum Academic

    • Play-based
    • Montessori
    • Waldorf
    • Reggio Emilia
    • Academic

    Academic-based preschools and Kindergartens are the most structured of the different types, and have a strong emphasis on math and reading readiness skills. These programs aim to expose children to what early-elementary school is like. While time is still allotted to free play, much of the day is built around explicit lessons guided by the teacher. Classrooms often resemble play-based ones (with different stations set up around the room), but at an Academic program the teacher leads students through the stations directly, and ties these activities to a whole-class lesson or theme.

    If you want to learn more about preschool education, check out our comprehensive guide. You can also read our in-depth answers to important preschool questions: What is preschool? What are the main preschool programs? What are the main pros and cons of preschool? What do children learn in preschool? How much does preschool cost?  What makes for a great preschool?

    What Delta West Academy says: Delta West Academy Kindergarten students learn and play in a balanced setting that actively teaches both academic and social skills. They imagine, construct and explore independently in stations, but also learn academic skills in structured lessons. Our little ones also travel off campus to various destinations like the Zoo, the fire station or the Science Centre every month to experience the world around them. Students from Delta West Academy\'s Kindergarten class who head off to Grade 1, have the understanding of what it takes to be a successful student in their first year of formal education.

    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 Delta West Academy 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 Delta West Academy says: The goal of DWA students is to have all post-secondary doors open to them when they graduate from high school. With this in mind, all teachers emphasize intellectual exploration, critical thinking, skill acquisition through practice supported by a strong work ethic. Students are actively mentored by teachers to improve specific individual skills. Parents are part of this collaboration and support from home speeds achievement. Competition is not encouraged between students, rather personal achievement is emphasized as all students are unique. However, a passing grade of 65% rather than 50% has been established to underscore the expectation of achievement.

    Developmental Priorities Balanced, Intellectual

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

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

    What Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    Special Needs Support No support

    No support

    Delta West Academy offers no/limited support for students with learning difficulties or special needs.

    • 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
    • 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

    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: Enrichment (The main focus is on enrichment. This means that while students may work at a marginally quicker pace than public school peers, the primary aim is to study subject in broader and deeper ways.)

    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 Delta West Academy says: This information is not currently available.

    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, Delta West Academy students perform an average of 2 hours of homework per night.

    Nightly Homework
    Delta West Academy 30 mins30 mins30 mins30 mins45 mins45 mins60 mins60 mins120 mins120 mins120 mins120 mins
    Site Average16 mins18 mins24 mins29 mins34 mins40 mins53 mins57 mins70 mins80 mins96 mins109 mins

    Report Card Policy

    How assessments are delivered across the grades:

    Lettered or numbered grades7 to 12
    Prose (narrative)-based feedback10 to 12
    Academic achievement reportingJK to 9
    Habits and behaviour reportingJK to 9
    Parent-teacher meetingsJK to 12

    Class Sizes Not available

    This information is not currently available.


    What Delta West Academy says:
    • Clubs at Delta West Academy are as varied as our students' interests. Aside from perennial favourites, every year a changing roster of clubs is presented to students or initiated by the students themselves. Film Studies, Citizenship, and Gymnastics Clubs are just a few of the ones that expand the horizons of our students' curiosity.

    • Sports OfferedCompetitiveRecreational
      Ice Hockey
      Track & Field
    • Clubs Offered
      Chess Club
      Community Service
      Debate Club
      Environmental Club
      Science Club
      Student Council

    Tuition & Financial Aid




    Discount TypeEnrollment TypeAmount
    2nd child (sibling)all students10%
    3rd child (sibling)all students10%
    4th child (sibling)all students10%

    Need-based financial aid

    Grade range that need-based aid is offered: 3 to 12
    Percentage of grade-eligible students receiving financial aid5%
    Average aid package size$10,000
    Percentage of total enrollment on financial aid5%
    Total aid available$30,000

    Application Deadline:
    Rolling deadline

    More information:

    Application Details:

    Merit based Scholarships

    This information is not currently available.


    Total enrollment Varies
    Average enrollment per gradeVaries
    Average class size10 to 12
    Gender (grades)JK to Gr. 12 (Coed)
    Boarding offeredNo

    Student distribution: This information is not currently available.



    Admissions Assessments:

    Assessment = requiredGrades
    InterviewJK - 12
    SSAT7 - 11
    SSAT (out of province)
    Entrance Exam(s)1 - 6
    Entrance Essay
    Application Fee

    Application Deadlines:

    Day students:

    What Delta West Academy says:

    Our Admission procedure is designed to inform you about DWA and to inform us about your child and family. We do this through a combination of a school tour, personal interviews, testing and the completion of an admissions package. The admissions package helps us to review your child's past learning experiences (unless they are applying for Kindergarten) from the point of view of academic standing, social interaction, and extra-curricular interests whereas the testing provides some independent evidence of skills and attitudes. For Grade 7 to12 applicants, testing is through the SSAT online service.  Finally, the tour and interview is an opportunity for in-depth discussion and for the student's personal qualities to be highlighted.

    The goal is determining an optimal educational fit between the DWA learning experience and you as the prospective family. 


    Acceptance Rate:


    Type of student Delta West Academy is looking for: The ideal DWA student is curious, active and wants to explore the world. He or she is interested in high academic as well as social success, participating in unique experiences, and ready for change. Our programming works best for average to above-average and gifted students, with parents ready to support school initiatives, home practice and extra-curricular activities.

    Student Entry Points

    Student TypeJKSK123456789101112
    Day Acceptance
    (Acceptance rate)
    10 - 15 (80%)10 - 20 (80%)0 - 5 (80%)0 - 5 (80%)0 - 5 (70%)0 - 5 (70%)0 - 5 (70%)0 - 5 (70%)0 - 8 (70%)0 - 8 (70%)0 - 5 (50%)0 - 8 (70%)0 - 5 (50%)0 - 2 (25%)

    University Placement

    Services = offered
    Career planning
    Mentorship Program
    University counseling
    Key Numbers
    Average graduating class size7
    *Canadian "Big 6" placements2
    **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)

    Schools our students are admitted to (last 4 years): University of Calgary University of Alberta University of Lethbridge Mount Royal University University of Toronto McGill University Dalhousie University Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Alberta College of Art & Design
    Schools our students attend (last 4 years): University of Calgary University of Toronto University of British Columbia McGill University Dalhousie University Mount Royal University Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Alberta College of Art & Design

    What Delta West Academy says:

  • 100% of our graduating students in the past 10 years have been accepted to the universities and programs of their choice.

  • Stories & Testimonials


    Happy Birthday DWA

    Happy Birthday to Delta West Academy!  We are celebrating our 20th anniversary and we have much to be proud of. Our school started with 9 students and has grown to over 100 all the while staying true to the founders' vision of small interactive classes in a small dynamic school. DWA still has an average 10:1 student to teacher ratio with a rigourous academic program, options, second languages, community service and international travel. We are still creative, responsive, and innovative (see our new Boutique Options).  We are excited to celebrate the many success stories of our alumni whom we have helped to launch on their studies and careers.  Our students are spread all over North America and Europe, from UBC and McGill, to Duke Univeristy and the London School of Economics.  We are eagerly looking forward to meeting many of them again at our Graduation Ceremonies in June 2013. At DWA, we still believe in the Power of Small...it gets amazing results!


    In the News


    April 29, 2017 - Dollars that Count - A New Bursary Program at Delta West Academy

    Is your child in Grades 7 to 12? Looking for new opportunities? Then Delta West Academy's new bursary program might be the answer. ...


    • Association of Independent Schools and Colleges in Alberta (AISCA) Associations

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