One-to-one comparison


  • QUICK SUMMARY

     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Basics

    Basics


     

    Founded

     

    2001

     

    2003


     

    Enrolment

     

    8000

     

    100


     

    Grades

     

    9 to 12

     

    7 to 12


     

    Gender

     

    Coed

     

    Coed


     

    Living arrangements

     

    eSchool

     

    Day


     

    Language of instruction

     

    English

     

    English


     

    Faith Based

     

     


     

    School focus

     

    Academic

     

    Academic


     

    Developmental Priorities

     
    Balanced
    "Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation."
     
    Balanced
    "Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation."
    Intellectual
    The goal is to cultivate "academically strong, creative and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions."

    Academics

    Academics


     

    Curriculum

     

    Traditional

     

    Progressive, Montessori


     

    Curriculum pace

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

     

    Academic culture

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

     

    Avg. Class Size

     

    Varies

     

    Varies


     

    Special needs support

     

    Learning, Developmental, Behavioral

     

    Learning


     

    Gifted learner support

     

    In-class adaptations

     

    In-class adaptations


     

    Preschool/K curriculum

     
     

    Tuition

    Tuition


     

    Day Tuition

     

     

    $17,448


     

    Boarding Tuition

     

     


     

    Financial aid (FA)

     

    Yes

     

    Yes


     

    Students on FA

     

    2%

     

    0%


     

    Eligible grades for FA

     

    9 to 12

     

    None


     

    Median FA package size

     

    $579

     

    $0

    Enrollment

    Enrollment


     

    Avg. enrollment per grade

     

    2,000

     

    17


     

    Percent in boarding

     

    0%

     

    0%

    Admissions

    Admissions


     

    Admissions rate

     

    100%

     

    100%


     

    Day entry years

     

    9, 10, 11, 12

     

    7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12


     

    Boarding entry years

     

     


     

    Day admissions deadline

     

    Rolling

     

    Rolling


     

    Boarding admissions deadline

     

    Not available

     

    Not available


     

    Interview required?

     

    No

     

    Yes: grades 7 - 9


     

    SSAT required

     

    No

     

    No

  • SCHOOL REVIEWS

     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    The Our Kids Review

    The Our Kids Review

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    information not available

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    information not available

    User reviews

    User reviews

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    "A lot of the courses include social components such as discussing assignments..."
    Michael Hicks - Alumnus   (May 22, 2020)
    Virtual High School allows you the flexibility to move and pursue personal and professional aspirati...
      View full review

    "...with the free tutoring I can get help with answering my questions with the press of a button."
    Cassidy Moulton - Student   (Mar 18, 2021)
    Virtual High School is a amazing online private school that has all of its class work online right a...
      View full review

    "The teachers are very hands-on with their students even though they are not physically there in person."
    Sera Bryce - Student   (May 03, 2021)
    I absolutely love Virtual High School. It is an online school that allows the students to progress a...
      View full review

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    information not available

    Our Take

    Our Take

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    There are many things that online instruction can offer that other schools simply can’t, including distance learning and remediation. Stephen Baker began developing the concept of the Virtual High School in 1995 with that in mind, and VHS gained accreditation—with it the ability to confer the OSSGD—in 2002. Courses can be started at any point, and students are able to work through the material at their own pace. There are many opportunities for interaction and collaboration with other students and instructors. At the end of the day, it’s a unique approach, and it has proven itself with a range of learners with a range of academic purposes.

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element is that rare bird of secondary education: a Montessori high school. The Element grew out of a primary program at OMS Montessori, building into the intermediate grades and, ultimately, through the high school grades. In 2012, The Element became distinct unto its own, offering a consistent program from grades 7 to 12. Then, in 2015, it moved into its own space, becoming physically distinct as well. Nevertheless, the foundational principle remains across all grades, providing learning that is self-referential and student directed. The ideal student is one who thrives within a very hands-on environment, who is guided by their curiosity, and is able to make the most a greater range of academic independence.

  • SCHOOL DESCRIPTION

     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Highlights

    Highlights

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    • Register anytime
    • Self-paced, fully online courses
    • 18 months to finish
    • Ontario Certified Teachers
    • Free online tutoring
    • Fast track, upgrade, and repeat options
    • Strong administrative support
    • 65,000+ enrolments
    • Recommended by universities
    • Credits recognized worldwide

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    information not available

    Description

    Description

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Since 2001, Virtual High School has been a trusted leader in online education. VHS students choose when and where to study, when to submit assignments, and when to write their online final exam. We recognize that no two learners are the same. With certified teachers, free tutoring, dedicated student support teams, and an outstanding administrative staff, we stay focused on meeting the needs of each student to deliver the best in online secondary education.

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element is an innovative high school, which places youth in their ‘element’, in school and beyond. Located in the dynamic Lansdowne Park area, The Element hosts Grade 7 to 12 students who thrive on being challenged and engaged in the whole educational process. Although the curriculum is based on Montessori pedagogy, a previous Montessori education is not required; a passion for life, knowledge and global inquiry is!

  • PRINCIPAL'S MESSAGE

     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Message

    Virtual High School is rooted in the philosophy that education should be flexible and centered on the individual student. Our students choose when and where to study, when to submit assignments, and when to write tests and the final exam. With fully online courses, certified teachers, and a robust administrative staff, we help nearly ten thousand students around the world meet their academic goals every year.

    I hope you enjoy learning about our exceptional school and students.

     

    On behalf of the The Element community, thank you for visiting our profile. As School Director, I have the privilege of working with a proficient team of parents, alumni, faculty and staff who are dedicated to offering their best to each of our students. We work tirelessly to realize our mission by delivering an educational experience designed to inspire and challenge students to discover the best of who they are, while year after year reaching to achieve their full potential.

    As a parent, you recognize that choosing a school for your child is one of the most significant decisions you will make. We need specific criteria by which to choose the ideal educational approach for our children. It is clear that the school years help to form the core foundation of our approach to learning and problem-solving, as well as who we are as contributing, global citizens. We at The Element are here to support you.

    At The Element, we provide our students with an educational foundation from which they can achieve personal and academic goals, while building independence, self-confidence and self-esteem. The unique Montessori methodology, with its student-centered approach, encourages the development of personal responsibility and thinking skills, as well as fostering a love of learning. Each student is guided in the exploration of his or her own learning style and the development of work habits most suited to individual interests and needs.

    Please browse our website and discover how we work together with Element parents to empower students to become self-regulated, engaged and lifelong learners. As trained experts in education, we understand that observation is an essential component in the decision making process. As such, we would like to invite you to visit us for a tour of our spacious and peaceful learning environment. This is the most personal way to see what The Element has to offer your student and family.

    The Element, an extension of OMS Montessori, is a not-for-profit school. For over 50 years, OMS Montessori has offered exceptional education to families in the city of Ottawa. We are thrilled to now offer our programming through high school. We welcome you to call and chat with our friendly staff (613-862-8578) or email ([email protected]) regarding your student’s education. Share with us how we can partner with you and your family to further explore Montessori education and philosophy.

    It is with great anticipation that we embark on the next 50 years at The Element. Please join us on this journey of promise and excitement.

  • ACADEMICS

    • OVERALL CURRICULUM

       

      Virtual High School

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      The Element High School

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


      Primary Curriculum

      Primary Curriculum

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Traditional


      Secondary Curriculum

      Secondary Curriculum

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Information not available


      Our Take: primary curriculum type

      Our Take: primary curriculum type

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Traditional curricula tend to be very content-based and rooted in the core disciplines. It is a structured approach that involves the teacher delivering a unified curriculum through direct instruction. Students usually learn by observing and listening to their teacher, studying facts and concepts in textbooks, and completing both tests and written assignments - which challenge students to not only demonstrate their mastery of content but their ability to analyze and deconstruct it critically. Class discussions are also used to create critical dialogue around the content of the curriculum.

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      Progressive (sometimes called "in- quiry-based") curricula attempt to place children's interests and ideas at the heart of the learning experience. Instead of lessons being driven by predetermined pathways, progressive curricula are often "emergent", with learning activities shaped by students' questions about the world. Instead of starting with academic concepts and then tying it to everyday experience, progressive methods begin with everyday experience and work back to an academic lesson. Teachers provide materials, experiences, tools and resources to help students investigate a topic or issue. Students are encouraged to explore, reflect on their findings, and discuss answers or solutions.


      Our Take: secondary curriculum type

      Our Take: secondary curriculum type

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Not applicable

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      Particularly popular in the younger grades (preschool to elementary), but sometimes available all the way up to high school, Montessori schools offer an alternative vision to the standard lesson format of most classrooms. Instead of listening to whole-class lessons, Montessori classrooms allow students to choose which "tasks" or activities interest them. These tasks centre around special Montessori puzzles - their essential feature being they contain a right answer and allow for selfcorrection. A strong emphasis is therefore placed on lessons being concrete and rooted in practical experience, along with students developing a sense of self-sufficiency, confidence and curiosity.


      What the school says about their curriculum

      What the school says about their curriculum

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      We put students in the driver’s seat. Virtual High School students have the freedom to learn at their own pace with fully online courses that accommodate and respond to individual learner needs. Throughout our courses we encourage students to connect their learning to the world around them. Our teaching methods include instruction through structured lessons and activities; differentiated instruction—text, audio, video, and interactive activities—to meet the diverse learning needs of students; scaffolded instruction to foster independence in the learning process; opportunities to collaborate in discussions with VHS students around the world; and personalized assessments. By giving students plenty of opportunities to think critically and creatively, solve complex problems, and practice effective communication, we aim to educate the whole student and foster digital citizenship.

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      When we are ‘in our element,’ we are focused, engaged, internally motivated, fulfilled and we strive to do our best. This is the basis of a Montessori education. The Element High School offers an environment which puts youth ‘in their element,’ in school and in preparation for life. What engages us depends on our stage of development; therefore, The Element High School offers two programs: e1 for Grades 7 and 8 and e2 for Grades 9 to 12, each responsive to two unique stages of students’ development. Each of these programs takes advantage of the intersection of our youth’s developmental characteristics and the requirements of the real world. This creates the conditions for focused engagement that leads to personal excellence. All learners are welcome. If students are interested in engaging in the next steps in their educational career and have the determination to work with teachers with maturity and independence, this program is ideal as a precursor to college or university entry.

    • COURSE PEDAGOGIES

      • Mathematics

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Traditional Math


        Our take: math approach type

        Our take: math approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        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.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        These math programs feature an equal balance of “Traditional” and “Discovery” methods.


        What the school says about their math program

        What the school says about their math program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The VHS Math Department aims to reach all learners by responding to their individual needs. Students have opportunities to learn through text, images, diagrams, and interactive activities. We model problem-solving in detailed examples and offer lots of opportunities to practice with structured exercises. Our formative activities allow students to gain valuable feedback from their teacher before completing graded assignments. Our assessments are not limited to traditional rote math problems. We also include opportunities to develop skills that prepare students for success in post-secondary studies and in the workforce. Students also have opportunities to write papers following the APA format, and create presentations that demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of concepts covered in their course.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        At The Element, Math, like English and French, is taught throughout the year for continuity and retention. The Grade 9 (MPM1D) and 10 (MPM2D) math courses are prescribed by the Ministry of Education. In Grades 11 and 12, students can take Functions (MCR3U), Advanced Functions (MHF4U) and Calculus and Vectors (MCV4U).The math courses are generally offered at the University Preparation level, although the courses can be adapted for a College Preparation level if it is in the best interest of particular student.


        Textbooks and supplementary materials

        Textbooks and supplementary materials

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        No textbooks or additional materials are required.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Information not available


        Calculator policy

        Calculator policy

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Students may use any scientific, non-programmable, non-graphing calculator.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Information not available

      • Science

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Equal Balance


        Our take: science approach type

        Our take: science approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        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.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        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.


        What the school says about their science program

        What the school says about their science program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Similar to traditional classrooms, our science instructors use a range of strategies and approaches. Clear and concise writing, helpful graphics and diagrams, hands-on laboratory activities, and research assignments with direct instruction and coaching form the foundation of our science courses. Additionally, teachers and students have at their disposal numerous tools that are unique to online learning environments. These include electronic simulation activities, discussion boards and email correspondence, assessments with real-time feedback, and interactive activities that engage both the student and instructor.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Compulsory courses in the humanities and sciences are offered each year in semesters or more compressed units. Elective humanities and sciences are provided in a cycle rather than every course being offered every year. They are offered often enough for students to take the courses that they elect. The English language courses coordinate with the humanities and sciences.


        Topics covered in science curriculum

        Topics covered in science curriculum

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

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

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

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


        Treatment of evolution (value)

        Treatment of evolution (value)

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Physics

      • Literature

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Traditional


        Our take: literature approach type

        Our take: literature approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        In traditional literature programs students focus on decoding the mechanics of texts: plot, characterization, and themes. These texts tend to include a balance of contemporary and “classic” literature. When studying a past work, students investigate its historical context -- but only insofar as this adds understanding to the work itself. Past works are therefore studied “on their own terms”, and not merely as historical artifacts to be deconstructed: traditional literature programs are firmly rooted in the humanities, and carry the belief that great literature can reveal fundamental and universal truths about the human condition. These programs emphasize class discussions and critical essay writing, and aim to develop in students critical thinking, communication skills, and a cultivated taste and ethos.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        These literature programs draw in equal measure from “Traditional” and “Social Justice” programs.


        What the school says about their literature program

        What the school says about their literature program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Students in our English courses develop the skills needed to analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of a text. Our courses present literature—poetry, short stories, novels, non-fiction, and plays—from a range of cultures and time periods, as well as videos, songs, and other media texts. We aim to help students become stronger readers, writers, and oral communicators while making connections to the world around them.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Literature courses are designed not only to complete the Ontario Secondary School Curriculum requirements, but also to challenge and engage students at every grade level. Students explore works of literature through a historical lens, studying 20th century literature in grade 9, 19th century literature in grade 10, 18th century literature in grade 11, and pre-18th century literature in grade 12. Students learn to interpret literary devices and themes in a variety of contemporary and classical texts, including novels, plays, poetry, short stories, and media. They also participate in writing skills workshops, which allow them to learn about and experiment with grammar, mechanics, and style in the English language.


        Domains covered by the literature program

        Topics covered in literature curriculum

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Ancient lit
        English lit
        World (non-Western) lit
        European (continental) lit
        American lit
        Canadian lit

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Ancient lit
        English lit
        World (non-Western) lit
        European (continental) lit
        American lit
        Canadian lit

      • Humanities and Social Sciences

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Equal Balance


        Our take: humanities and social sciences approach type

        Our take: humanities and social sciences approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

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

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

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


        What the school says about their humanities and social sciences

        What the school says about their humanities and social sciences

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Students in our humanities and social science courses are exposed to a variety of disciplinary traditions, including history, geography, politics, philosophy, religion, anthropology, sociology, and psychology. By analyzing foundational texts, historical artefacts, and social relationships, students develop cultural literacy and an understanding of the human condition. We aim to teach students critical thinking and persuasion skills and, equally importantly, how to apply their knowledge and skills to real-world contexts.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Compulsory courses in the humanities and sciences are offered each year in semesters or more compressed units. Elective humanities and sciences are provided in a cycle rather than every course being offered every year. They are offered often enough for students to take the courses that they elect. The English language courses coordinate with the humanities and sciences. Specific academic skills such as note taking, studying, test taking, research, academic writing, and oral and multi-media presentation are taught directly as an integral part of the courses. The close communication, possible within a smaller school, allows these skills to develop throughout the high school experience.

      • Foreign Languages

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Communicative


        Our take: foreign language approach type

        Our take: foreign language approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        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.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        These programs feature an equal blend of the audio-lingual and communicative styles of language instruction.


        What the school says about their foreign language programs

        What the school says about their foreign language programs

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Our French courses present French language structures in engaging communicative contexts (listening, reading, speaking, and writing). Students have the opportunity to practice these skills and build their confidence in a safe environment, before any formal assessment. Teachers in our French courses support learners by providing timely, detailed, clear feedback based on individual needs.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        French as a Second Language is a strong core component of the program, integrated into ongoing humanities studies.


        Language instruction offered in:

        Topics covered in science curriculum

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Hebrew
        ESL
        Spanish
        Russian
        Latin
        Japanese
        Italian
        Greek
        German
        French
        Chinese-Mandarin
        Chinese-Cantonese

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Hebrew
        ESL
        Spanish
        Russian
        Latin
        Japanese
        Italian
        Greek
        German
        French
        Chinese-Mandarin
        Chinese-Cantonese


        Learning a foreign language is required until

        Treatment of evolution (value)

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Information not available

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Information not available

      • Fine Arts

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Equal Balance


        Our take: fine arts approach type

        Our take: fine arts approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        These programs have an equal emphasis on receptive and creative learning.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        These programs have an equal emphasis on receptive and creative learning.


        What the school says about their fine arts program

        What the school says about their fine arts program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Students in our art courses develop their creative skills as they learn and apply the concepts, styles, and conventions of various forms of fine art. This is accomplished through the appreciation, analysis, and performance of different artistic mediums in a range of creative disciplines, including drama, music, and visual arts. We encourage students to springboard from their interests and personality when approaching coursework and assessments. Our aim is for students to build knowledge and develop creative skills in the arts that reflect and further cultivate their personal skills, social awareness, and goals beyond school.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Students have a number of ways to participate in the arts. They can take a credit course in visual arts, music, dance, drama or integrated studies, audit a course rather than taking it for credit, be exposed to the arts through the interdisciplinary assignments of other courses or use The Element facilities to explore the arts without the directed intent of a course. The Element has a dedicated Art/Design Studio. Guest artists are an important component of the program as young people respond to adults who are passionate about their work. With the flexibility of The Element’s scheduling, students are also able to go out into the community to work alongside artists in their studios. A faculty member works with students to find appropriate mentors.


        Courses offered in:

        Topics covered in science curriculum

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Acting
        Dance
        Drama/Theatre
        Graphic Design
        Music
        Visual Arts

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Acting
        Dance
        Drama/Theatre
        Graphic Design
        Music
        Visual Arts

      • Computers and Technolgy

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        Approach

        Approach

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Heavy integration

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Heavy integration


        Our take: computers and technology approach type

        Our take: computers and technology approach type

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        A major effort is made to integrate the development of digital literacy throughout the curriculum and in everything students do. Digital literacy is understood to be a fundamental skill in the 21st century: it therefore follows, the idea goes, that teachers should find ways to connect every lesson back to technology. Effort is made to ensure the use of technology is meaningful and advances students’ skills beyond what they would otherwise be from using computers outside the classroom.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        A major effort is made to integrate the development of digital literacy throughout the curriculum and in everything students do. Digital literacy is understood to be a fundamental skill in the 21st century: it therefore follows, the idea goes, that teachers should find ways to connect every lesson back to technology. Effort is made to ensure the use of technology is meaningful and advances students’ skills beyond what they would otherwise be from using computers outside the classroom.


        What the school says about their computers and technology program

        What the school says about their computers and technology program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Because our courses are completed entirely online, VHS students are constantly developing and practicing the digital skills needed to thrive in a rapidly evolving world.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Students at The Element use modern technology daily for research, organizational purposes and multi-media presentations. In the younger grades, students explore technology through their entrepreneurship program, where some students opt to work with our 3D printer. We also have formal computer studies courses for Grade 11 and Grade 12 students. Students can take an Introduction to Computer Science (ICS3U) in Grade 11 and Computer Science (ICS4U) in Grade 12.


        Courses offered in:

        Topics covered in science curriculum

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Web design
        Robotics
        Computer science

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Web design
        Robotics
        Computer science

      • Physical Education

         

        Virtual High School

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        The Element High School

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


        What the school says about their physical education program

        What the school says about their computers and technology program

        VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

        Online physical education gives students the flexibility to not only work through the course in whatever order they prefer, but it also allows them to choose activities for assessments that best fit their individual skills and comfort level. Students demonstrate their understanding and abilities through a variety of assessment opportunities. When it comes to the physical part of online physical education, activity-specific skills and strategies are supported by video instruction. Students see the movements of a skill or activity prior to participation, and then submit a video of themselves performing it for assessment and feedback. Additionally, through the use of case studies and self-reflection, students learn to think creatively and critically about a number of issues related to healthy and active living.

        THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

        Physical Education courses that meet the Ministry of Education’s requirements are offered and focus on a range of individual, team and competitive activities. In addition to Ministry courses, students often create their own clubs and teams based on their interests, regardless of whether they are taking a formal Phys. Ed. course. The Element participates in inter-scholastic competition with other independent and public schools. The Element also encourages daily activity, and being in Lansdowne Park provides many opportunities to be physically active throughout the day, from the skateboard park and basketball courts to the skating rink and canal. Individual sports can be pursued with other interested peers at The Element or accommodated through community sports clubs. The flexibility of our scheduling also makes The Element an ideal choice for students who are in elite sports and who require adaptive schedules.

    • CURRICULUM PACE

       

      Virtual High School

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      The Element High School

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


      Pace

      Pace

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Student-paced


      Our Take

      Our Take

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

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

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

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


      What the school says

      What the school says

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Our courses are fully online. No textbooks or additional materials are required. All courses include an optional pacing tool for students who wish to set deadlines for themselves, structure their time, and pace their studies and learning accordingly.

    • ACADEMIC CULTURE

       

      Virtual High School

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      The Element High School

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


      Culture

      Culture

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Supportive


      Our Take

      Our Take

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

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

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

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


      What the school says

      What the school says

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      We think every student should have the opportunity to succeed. Virtual High School students are supported by a team of real people determined to help them meet their academic goals. We work with each student to meet their personal goals and deadlines. With prompt feedback and grading, free online tutoring, and the ongoing support from our administrative and guidance teams, our students enjoy a smooth road to academic success.

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      Curriculum allows for discussion and debate. Adolescents respond best to respect and choice, not only as an aid to developing independence, but also as reinforcement to their personal dignity. Each student has a dedicated faculty advisor to assist him or her in all aspects of the program. We balance the support needed for academic progress with our goal of creating independent learners.


      Approach to student honours

      Approach to student honours

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      "We intentionally avoid all forms of public distinction between students in terms of academic performance."

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      "We intentionally avoid all forms of public distinction between students in terms of academic performance."

    • DEVELOPMENTAL PRIORITIES

       

      Virtual High School

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      The Element High School

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


      Primary

      Primary

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Balanced
      "Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation."

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      Balanced
      "Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation."


      Secondary

      Secondary

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      Not applicable
      Not applicable

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      Intellectual
      The goal is to cultivate "academically strong, creative and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions."


      What the school says

      What the school says

      VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

      At Virtual High School, we encourage and inspire a culture of responsibility, respect, integrity, and perseverance. These are the pillars of our learning community, the qualities we expect of our students, teachers, and staff alike. Additionally, we champion the importance of mental health, and the need to create healthy and inclusive communities both online and offline.

      THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

      The goal of The Element is to support the development of well-balanced individuals who know and accept themselves, and live as active, responsible community members.

  • SPECIAL NEEDS SUPPORT


    FORMAL SUPPORT FOR DISORDERS, DISABILITIES, AND EXCEPTIONALITIES

    A - Forms of Support
    Accommodation:
    Modification:
    Remediation:
    B - Environments
    Indirect Support:
    Resource Assistance:
    Withdrawal Assistance:
    Partial Integration:
    Full-Time Class:

    Virtual High School

    The Element High School

    Forms of Support Environments Forms of Support Environments
    ADHD (moderate to severe)
    This is a neurodevelopmental disorder. Children with ADHD may be hyperactive and unable control their impulses. Or they may have trouble paying attention. These behaviors can interfere with school and home life.
    Learning disabilities
    Dyslexia (Language-Based Learning Disability)
    This is a learning disability that can limit a child's ability to read and learn. It can have a variety of traits. A few of the main ones are impaired phonological awareness and decoding, problems with orthographic coding, and auditory short-term memory impairment.
    Auditory Processing Disorder (APD)
    This is a sound differentiation disorder involving problems with reading, comprehension, and language.
    Dyscalculia
    This is a kind of specific learning disability in math. Kids with this math disorder have problems with calculation. They may also have problems with math-related concepts such as time and money.
    Dysgraphia
    This is a kind of specific learning disability in writing. It involves problems with handwriting, spelling, and organizing ideas.
    Language Processing Disorder
    This is characterized by having extreme difficulty understanding what is heard and expressing what one wants to say. These disorders affect the area of the brain that controls language processing.
    Nonverbal Learning Disorders (NLD)
    These involve difficulties interpreting non-verbal cues, such as facial expressions and body language. They're usually characterized by a significant discrepancy between higher verbal skills and weaker motor, visual-spatial, and social skills.
    Visual Perceptual/Visual Motor Deficit
    A characteristic seen in people with learning disabilities such as Dysgraphia or Non-verbal LD. It can result in missing subtle differences in shapes or printed letters, losing place frequently, struggles with cutting, holding pencil too tightly, or poor eye/hand coordination.
    Developmental
    Autism
    Refers to a range of conditions that involve challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, and speech and nonverbal communication. They also involve unique strengths and differences. For instance, there are persons with both low- and high-functioning autism (some claim the latter is identical to Asperger's syndrome).
    Asperger's Syndrome
    On the autism spectrum, Asperger's is considered quite mild in terms of symptoms. While traits can vary widely, many kids with Asperger's struggle with social skills. They also sometimes fixate on certain subjects and engage in repetitive behaviour.
    Down syndrome
    his is associated with impairment of cognitive ability and physical growth, and a particular set of facial characteristics.
    Intellectual disability
    This is a condition characterized by significant limitations in intellectual functioning (e.g., reasoning, learning, and problem solving). Intellectual disabilities are also known as general learning disabilities (and used to be referred to as a kind of mental retardation).
    Williams syndrome
    This is a rare genetic disorder present at birth. It is characterized by intellectual disabilities or learning problems, unique facial features, and cardiovascular problems.
    Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
    Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term used to describe the range of effects that can occur in an individual whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy. These may include growth deficits, facial anomalies, and damage to the central nervous system, which can lead to cognitive, behavioural, and other problems.
    Behavioral and Emotional
    Troubled behaviour / troubled teens
    roubled teens tend to have problems that are intense, persistent, and can lead to quite unpredictable behaviour. This can lead to behavioural and emotional issues, such as drug and alcohol abuse, criminal behaviour, eating disorders, depression, and anxiety.
    Clinical Depression
    This is a mental health disorder also called "major depression." It involves persistent feelings of sadness, loss, and anger. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms are usually severe enough to cause noticeable problems in relationships with others or in daily activities, such as school, work, or one's social life.
    Clinical anxiety
    This is a mood disorder involving intense, relentless feelings of distress and fear. They can also have excessive and persistent worry about everyday situations, and repeated episodes of intense anxiety or terror.
    Suicidal thoughts
    This involves persistent thoughts about ending one's life.
    Drug and alcohol abuse
    This involves the excessive use of drug and/or alcohol, which interferes with daily functioning.
    Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
    This is a disruptive behavioural disorder which normally involves angry outbursts, often directed at people of authority. This behaviour must last continuously for six months or more and significantly interfere with daily functioning.
    Physical
    Multiple sclerosis
    This is a condition of the central nervous system. It affects the brain, optic nerves, and spinal cord. Symptoms can include fatigue, loss of motor control, memory loss, depression, and cognitive difficulties.
    Cerebral palsy
    his refers to a group of permanent movement disorders that appear in early childhood. CP is caused by abnormal development or damage to the parts of the brain that control movement, balance, and posture.
    Muscular dystrophy
    Muscular dystrophy is a neuromuscular disorder which weakens the body's muscles. Causes, symptoms, age of onset, and prognosis vary between individuals.
    Spina Bifida
    This is a condition present at birth due to the incomplete formation of the spine and spinal cord. It can lead to a number of physical challenges, including paralysis or weakness in the legs, bowel and bladder incontinence, hydrocephalus (too much fluid in the brain), and deformities of the spine.
    Dyspraxia (Developmental Coordination Disorder)
    This is a Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). Also known as "sensory integration disorder," it affects fine and/or gross motor coordination in children and adults. It may also affect speech.
    Blindness
    Visual impairment is a decreased ability or inability to see that can't be fixed in usual ways, such as with glasses. Some people are completely blind, while others have what's called "legal blindness."
    Deafness
    Hearing impairment, also known as "hearing loss," is a partial or total inability to hear. The degree of hearing impairment varies between people. It can range from complete hearing loss (or deafness) to partial hearing loss (meaning the ears can pick up some sounds).
    Cystic Fibrosis
    Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is an inherited genetic condition, which affects the body's respiratory, digestive, and reproductive systems. It affects young children and adults.
    Multiple physical
    Accommodating a wide range of physical conditions and disabilities.
     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


    Additional support

    Additional support

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Social skills programs
    Occupational therapy
    Psychotherapy
    Speech-language therapy

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Social skills programs
    Occupational therapy
    Psychotherapy
    Speech-language therapy

    INFORMAL SUPPORT FOR MILD DIFFICULTIES

    INFORMAL SUPPORT FOR MILD DIFFICULTIES


     

    Learning Strategy

     

     


     

    Extra Support

     

     


     

    Mild but clinically diagnosed ADHD

     

    Accommodations

    Modifications

    Extra support

     

    Accommodations


    Additional support

    Additional support

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Social skills programs
    Occupational therapy
    Psychotherapy
    Speech-language therapy

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Social skills programs
    Occupational therapy
    Psychotherapy
    Speech-language therapy


    What the school says about their special needs support

    What the school says about their special needs support

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    VHS can implement Individual Education Plans (IEPs). An IEP is a document that outlines a student’s strengths, weaknesses, learning needs, and any accommodations to be made within a course. We implement any accommodations listed in an existing IEP that apply to our learning environment. Accommodations may include a reduced workload, simplified tasks and materials, or more time for learning and completing activities. Exam and test accommodations may include, but are not limited to, extra time to write an exam or test, the ability to scribe answers or read questions, memory aids for exams, breaks during exams, and no marks deducted for spelling. The assistance of other persons and the use of specialized equipment may also be required to accommodate the needs of the student.

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Information not available


    What happens if child develops disorder while enrolled/Should families seek enrollment if child has disability

    What happens if child develops disorder while enrolled/Should families seek enrollment if child has disability

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Whether a student has a clinically diagnosed learning disability or develops learning difficulties while enrolled at VHS, we can accommodate and respond to their individual needs. With self-paced courses, round-the-clock access to course content, and 18 months to finish, VHS students have the freedom to take as much time as they need to review content, take notes, and practice retention. Our courses present content a number of ways (text, audio, images, video, interactive activities) and include a built-in screen reader. When it comes to assessments, students may choose how they present their ideas (e.g. write a paper, give an oral presentation, create a visual). Additionally, we make accommodations for students who use assistive technologies in their learning.

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    We treat each student as an individual. Through discussions with parents, student and specialists, we determine how to best meet the students’ needs and whether or not our school is the best choice in meeting those needs.

  • EXTRACURRICULARS


    Virtual High School

    The Element High School

    Competitive

    Comp.

    Recreational

    Rec.

    Competitive

    Comp.

    Recreational

    Rec.

    Badminton

    Baseball

    Basketball

    Canoeing/Kayaking

    Cricket

    Cross-country skiing

    Cycling

    Downhill skiing

    Equestrian

    Fencing

    Field Hockey

    Figure Skating

    Football

    Golf

    Gymnastics

    Ice Hockey

    Ice Skating

    Lacrosse

    Martial Arts

    Mountain biking

    Racquet Ball

    Rowing

    Rugby

    Running

    Sailing

    Skateboarding

    Snowboarding

    Soccer

    Softball

    Squash

    Swimming

    Tennis

    Track & Field

    Volleyball

    Weightlifting

    Wrestling

    Archery

    Curling

     

    Virtual High School

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    The Element High School

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL


    Clubs Offered

    Topics covered in science curriculum

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Ballet and Classical Ballet
    Yoga
    Yearbook
    Student Council
    Scouting
    Science Club
    School newspaper
    Round Square
    Robotics club
    Radio club
    Poetry/Literature club
    Photography
    Paintball
    Outdoor Education
    Outdoor Club
    Online Magazine
    Musical theatre/Opera
    Math Club
    Jazz Ensemble
    Habitat for Humanity
    Foreign Language Club
    Environmental Club
    Drama Club
    Debate Club
    Dance Club
    Computer Club
    Community Service
    Choir
    Chess Club
    Band
    Audiovisual Club
    Astronomy Club
    Art Club
    Animation

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    Ballet and Classical Ballet
    Yoga
    Yearbook
    Student Council
    Scouting
    Science Club
    School newspaper
    Round Square
    Robotics club
    Radio club
    Poetry/Literature club
    Photography
    Paintball
    Outdoor Education
    Outdoor Club
    Online Magazine
    Musical theatre/Opera
    Math Club
    Jazz Ensemble
    Habitat for Humanity
    Foreign Language Club
    Environmental Club
    Drama Club
    Debate Club
    Dance Club
    Computer Club
    Community Service
    Choir
    Chess Club
    Band
    Audiovisual Club
    Astronomy Club
    Art Club
    Animation


    What the school says

    What the school says

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    • In addition to Ministry courses, e2 students often create their own clubs and teams based on their interests. For example, in the past, students have created a Volleyball club and an Ultimate Frisbee Club.
    • The Element encourages daily activity, and being in Lansdowne Park provides many opportunities to be physically active throughout the day, from the skateboard park and basketball courts to the skating rink and canal.
    • The flexibility of our scheduling also makes The Element an ideal choice for students who are in elite sports and who require adaptive schedules.
  • ADMISSION

    Admissions

    Admissions

     

     

    Admissions rate

     

    100%

     

    100%


     

    Day entry years

     

    9, 10, 11, 12

     

    7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12


     

    Boarding entry years

     

     


     

    Day admissions deadline

     

    Rolling

     

    Rolling


     

    Boarding admissions deadline

     

    Not available

     

    Not available


     

    Interview required?

     

    No

     

    Yes: grades 7 - 9


     

    SSAT required

     

    No

     

    No


     

    SSAT(out of province) required

     

    No

     

    No


     

    Entrance exams required

     

    No

     

    No


     

    Entrance essay required

     

    No

     

    No


     

    Application fee required

     

    No

     

    No

    Type of student school is looking for

    Type of student school is looking for

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    Anyone can take a course with Virtual High School. Our educational model and student body reflect the complexity and diversity of education in the twenty-first century. VHS students choose when and where to study, when to submit assignments, and when to write tests and the final exam. This requires our students to take personal responsibility for managing their education. Taking courses at VHS fosters independence, maturity, and self-motivation in students—all invaluable skills that prepare students for success in post-secondary studies and employment. As supporters of individuality and acceptance, we celebrate and champion diversity in thought, race, belief, gender identification, sexual orientation, culture, and life experience. We don’t just celebrate and support diversity—we thrive on it. With students in over 120 countries, we are strengthened by the wide range of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives in our vibrant learning community.

    THE ELEMENT HIGH SCHOOL

    All learners are welcome. If students are interested in engaging in the next steps in their educational career and have the determination to work with teachers with maturity and independence, this program is ideal as a precursor to college or university entry.

    What the school says

    What the school says

    VIRTUAL HIGH SCHOOL

    There are no admissions requirements, though students will be required to provide proof of their successful completion of a prerequisite course or equivalent, if applicable.




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