Ontario is home to some of the oldest and most storied boys' schools in the country. Likewise, they have provided leadership and innovation for both boys' education and education in general.
Included is innovation around what boys' schools can, and should, provide to the students that enroll within them. Taylor Statton, head of character development at Pickering College, wrote in 1930 that:
"The ‘habit of obedience’ forced upon the impressionable nature of a child does not develop judgment and will, but does develop that fatal facility in following other people’s wills, which tends to make us a hopeless mob—mere sheep, instead of wise, free, strong individuals. The habit of submission to authority, the long, deeply impressed conviction that to ‘be good’ is to ‘give up’—that there is virtue in the act of surrender—this is one of the sources from which we continually replenish human weakness … Those who know no other way of modifying a child’s behaviour than through ‘making him mind’ suppose that if he were not make to mind he must be utterly neglected. … the rich years of childhood should be passed in the acquiring the habits of self-direction."
Today, that’s exactly what boys’ schools hold as a primary goal: the development of character based in a uniquely male perspective. Just as some girls’ may require more encouragement to enter STEM studies, given the traditional gender expectations that are still reflected in academic and professional life, some boys benefit from a greater attention to the development of character and social identity. Through specific attention to aspects of their students’ emotional lives, as well as positive mentorship, boys’ schools seek to help students move beyond the stereotypical expectations that may be made of them in other environments. In contrast to what was common in the early part of the last century, boys schools have adopted many of the goals that arose within the girls’ schools. Paraphrasing Deryn Lavell in her description of Bishop Strachan School, they seek to provide an opportunity for each boy to understand who he is, his place in the world, to gain independence, to have a chance to learn leadership skills, [and] "to find a voice in a multiplicity of voices."
Absent from girls, boys perceive new areas of opportunity, such as in the arts, or other areas of student engagement that, in coed schools, can unwittingly encourage gender segregation and performance expectations. In all-boys schools, students are more likely to engage in the arts and the social sciences, and feel less pressure to adopt/display stereotypically male behaviors.
Most importantly, boys’ schools can allow specific kinds of discussion that, in other settings, boys may not be readily exposed to or, when they are, may feel an acute pressure to avoid. In addition to teaching English and Drama, Laurie Fraser administers aspects of the Character Project at Upper Canada College. The goal of the project is partially to instill authority and leadership, though there are more foundational goals as well. “It’s really hard to act in the world with kindness and generosity when you don’t feel good on the inside,” says Fraser. “We have conversations in a series of workshops about character strengths and the pillars of well-being, including positive emotions, engagement, relationships, finding meaning and having a sense of accomplishment in life.”
Below is a list of all-boys schools in Ontario.
Upper Canada College (est. 1829)
Located in the heart of Toronto, Upper Canada College is the oldest independent boys' school in Ontario. Our IB graduates are highly regarded by top universities and post-secondary institutions worldwide. [View profile]
|$32,650 to $64,205
|Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Boys||32650|
|$52,650 to $55,000
|MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Boys||52650|
Crescent School (est. 1913)
Crescent School is a Toronto independent day school for boys in Grades 3 to 12. Our learning environment develops students' characters through academics, arts, athletics, business, outreach and robotics. [View profile]
|MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boys||33250|
||Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Boys||29600|
|$16,000 to $29,900
||Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Boys||16000|
|$35,120 to $63,500
||MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Boys||35120|
London International Academy (est. 2002)
A Canadian Private Secondary Co-ed Boarding school, located in downtown London, Ontario. LIA offers academic courses from Grades 9-12 and is authorized to grant the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). [View profile]
|$9,200 to $41,900
||HighSchools Day Boarding Boarding Coed Boys Girls||9200|
St. Clement's Early Learning School (est. 1955)
St. Clement's Early Learning School 70 St. Clements Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M4R 1H2 St. Clement’s Early Learning School provides a child with an opportunity for growth in all areas of his or her development. [View profile]
|$8,500 to $20,500
|Preschool Kindergarten Elementary Day Day Boys Coed||8500|
Royal St. George's College (est. 1964)
RSGC is an urban day school that combines academic excellence with a stimulating and supportive environment. Our mission is to challenge and inspire each boy to become the best version of himself. [View profile]
||MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boys||32100|
||MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boys||19500|
Linbrook School (est. 2014)
Linbrook School is Oakville's only all-boys school. This independent, not-for-profit day school fosters and supports each individual students special skills as an athlete, musician, performer, artist, writer or humanitarian. [View profile]
|$21,100 to $24,885
||Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Boys||21100|
Great Lakes Christian High School (est. 1952)
Great Lakes Christian High School offers programs for grades nine through 12 in Beamsville. It accepts day and boarding students. [View profile]
|$5,750 to $39,300
||HighSchools Boarding Homestay Boarding Day Boys Coed||5750|