Research schools. Smarter.

A virtual private school expo and sequence of online events for exploring, evaluating & understanding the full landscape of private schools — from IB to special needs, Waldorf to Montessori, day schools to boarding, across Canada, the U.S., and abroad.

All within a portal customized to your family needs.

Virtual School Expo

Step-by-step guidance, informed by our 23 years of helping families improve the quality of their school research.

Parent Q&A Roundtables

Insights from current parents about their school experience and what they wish they had known before enrolling in a school.

School meetings and tours

Exclusive access to meetings with admissions officers, current parents, alumni, and other school insiders.



The easiest way to find, research and meet private schools.

  1. Browse and categorize your options Step 1

    • Get a clear picture of the school landscape. Browse schools and start to create your shortlist—so you can begin organizing your thoughts, and so we can customize the rest of your experience on the Admissions Pathway, enabling you to focus your attention and energy on your potential best-fit schools.

      to gain early access to the Our Kids Private School Admissions Pathway

    Starts Sept 21, 2020
  2. Learn from experts at the Virtual Expo Step 2

    • A one-day event to quickly and easily drop in on live video chats with school reps, where you can ask questions or observe schools answer questions from other families. Interact with all your potential schools, and meet some new ones, in an efficient and non-committal way.

      Plus, participate in live video seminars and panel discussions given by experts and education consultants on topics chosen to help you during your search and application process.

      Seminar Itinerary:

      • Choosing a school (1 hour)  
        • Learn:

          • What to look for when researching schools
          • The three questions every school needs to answer well, and what "good answers" look like
          • What it means to focus on finding a school that is the right "fit", and the factors to look for in determining fit
          • Whether you should choose a school that plays to your child's strengths, or that challenges them on their current weaknesses
          • Is choosing a school a matter of logic or "gut feel?"
          • The two crucial elements any school must satisfactorily deliver, and how to judge if they are delivering them
          • The red flags you want to watch carefully for
          • How to leverage current parents to enhance your research
          • The mistakes families commonly make that undermine their ability to pick the optimal school
          • How to bring school admissions officers onto your "team", and why honesty is indeed your best policy
      • Tuition costs, scholarships, & financial aid (30 minutes) 
        • Learn:

          • Why private schools are more accessible than you might think
          • Questions to ask schools to get a full handle on tuition and expenses
          • The motivation for schools to offer financial aid
          • How to approach asking schools about financial aid
          • How applications for financial aid are evaluated
          • Typical financial aid package sizes
          • Which grades get the most financial aid
          • How to ask schools about arranging payment plans
          • Which tax breaks you may be eligible for
      • Knowing when a school isn't working (30 minutes) 
        • Learn:

          • Five ingredients all objectively good schools share
          • The outsized role of school leadership on your experience
          • How to recognize a poor fit early
          • The number one sign a school isn't working for a child
          • Reasons why a school might not be working for a child
          • Is the problem your child, the school, or the fit?
          • When to change schools and when to work within the school on an internal solution
          • What to expect when switching from a public to a private school
      • Hindsight from parents on choosing a school (30 minutes) 
        • Learn:

          • What they found most challenging about the search, and how they tried to address those challenges
          • What they discovered about the process that surprised them
          • How they ended up deciding between multiple choices
          • How they would change their approach were they to choose a school again
      • Bill 115 & English school eligibility in Quebec (on demand) 

      to gain free access to the Our Kids Virtual Private School Expo

    October 3
  3. Hear from current parents: Q&A Roundtables Step 3

    • Attend 60-minute virtual roundtables for each school you're interested in or considering, where alumni and current students and parents will field questions and share their perspective on the school—including its culture, strengths, and weaknesses.

      We've designed our questions, for your sake, to generate insights that will guide your school search.

      Questions to be answered by alumni and current parents  
      • Alumni:

        • What did you appreciate most about the school?
        • What would you change about the school if you could?
        • What most differentiates the school from others, in your mind?
        • If the school were to become a person, what would its personality be like — in only three words?
        • What is the "typical student" like?
        • What would families find most surprising about the school?
        • What advice would you give students just entering the school?

        Current parents:

        • What do you think the school's strong points are, and where is it weakest?
        • Why did you choose the school originally? Are you happy with the choice? In what ways is the school what you expected — and in what ways is it not?
        • How would you describe the values of the school — and the values of other families?


      to gain free access to the Our Kids School Roundtables

    October 5 to 18
  4. Speak directly with school admissions teams, one-on-one Step 4

    • Start a one-on-one conversation with school admissions officers. Having evaluated schools from afar, it's time to delve into details, and bring them onto your "team."

      For each potential school, book a 20-minute discovery meeting, hosted by video conference, where admissions officers will walk you through a short, structured process of getting to know you and your child, answer your questions (which may be more private or idiosyncratic in nature), and advise you on your school search.

      The meeting will begin a conversation about the suitability of the school for your child. It carries no expectations or commitment.

      Admissions officers will walk you through a structured process of getting to know you and your child.

      How schools will conduct the meeting  
        • They'll ask if you have any specific goals for the meeting, or if you're happy to follow their plan
        • They'll ask you about your child's history and current circumstances, about your reasons for seeking out a school,
        • They'll outline their initial thoughts on the possible fit for your child
        • They'll invite questions
        • They'll discuss next steps if you want to continue the conversation


      During such meetings, schools typically try to discern what environment is truly best for a child, and advise families accordingly. If you sense a school is simply pitching you, it's a red flag.

      Types of questions to ask during the meeting  
        • Ask schools about the kind of students they serve uniquely well, and how and why your child, specifically, may or may not fit that mold
        • Raise any current problems or issues your child is currently experiencing, and ask how their school may or may not address them, (be open and honest with admission officers, as they can only help you if they know your situation)
        • Ask schools about financial aid (schools are expecting you to ask, and asking will NOT affect your chance of admission)
        • Ask schools about their admissions process, and the next steps


      to gain free access to one-on-one meetings

    October 5 to 24
  5. RSVP for important Open House events and tours Step 5

    • You've narrowed your sights to a few schools, and have rationally evaluated each one.

      Now it's time to personally or virtually SEE the school and get a visceral sense of life at the school through an in-person or virtual open house or tour event. We recommend you do so for all schools you're seriously considering.

      Bring your child along for the ride and aim to tune into and follow your gut reactions.

      to easily RSVP for Open House events and tours

    Throughout Fall
  6. Access key application requirements and deadlines Step 6

    • The final step is to make a formal application for enrollment. Pay close attention to deadlines and requirements, and apply to multiple schools if there is any chance of not getting into your top choice.

      to gain free access to deadlines, requirements, and application forms

    Throughout Fall





Starts September 21st

The Admissions Pathway won't wait for you. The journey starts Starts September 21st, but registration is still open.
Make sure your family gets access to your own customized research portal & all the insider opportunities that follow.

For an exceptional journey, you need an exceptional guide

It's a decision that will impact your family for years to come, and for lifetimes that follow. You could roll the dice. You could trust your gut. Or you can put your trust in a comprehensive process and decades of expertise in Canadian private education.

Every year, more than 2.6 million families put their trust in Our Kids to show them everything that the world of independent education has to offer — everything, not just the big names you've heard of, but all the opportunities (and pitfalls) hiding right under your nose.

Connected

For more than 20 years, Our Kids has been the leading resource that families rely on when it comes to exploring, analyzing & gaining admission to the schools that best fit their needs.

We have hundreds of schools in the Our Kids network — schools we know in detail, and that know & trust Our Kids in return.

That's how we give you an 'insider's advantage' with the Admissions Pathway — not only from years of research & insight, but also from the relationships behind them.

Comprehensive

On this journey, there's nothing wistful about 'the road not taken.'

This time, leaving stones unturned comes with real risks — risk of landing in the wrong place, risk of leaving opportunities on the table, risk of turning away from the 'perfect fit' your child needs.

With more than 330 schools in our network, Our Kids offers the best vantage point you can get into the world of private education.

Concise

Education is our passion, but helping parents is our mission. We could talk for days about the top-quality schools in our network — instead, we've built a customized platform to learn what you're looking for & cut right to the chase.

By joining the Admissions Pathway, you get more than a comprehensive perspective — you get it while saving countless hours combing through all the options by yourself.

Get started today.

Get free access. Register here.

Take 90 seconds now and we'll give you free access to Private School Admissions Pathway.

Your curated journey starts September 21st.

 


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