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A Brief History of Boarding Schools

A history of boarding from the United Kingdom to Canada

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The British Tradition

British boarding schools have historically provided the model for boarding schools in Canada. Prime among the antecedents is the King’s School in Canterbury, England. It was founded in the year 597 and, until the dissolution of the monasteries act nearly a century later, it remained a cloistered religious institution. At King’s, students were kept apart from society at large, were instructed by clergy, and were expected to devote themselves to religious contemplation. Certainly, there wasn’t time for much else—there were 14 chapel services each day in addition to mass and daily prayers for the dead.


King’s was a grammar school in the literal meaning of the term. The main focus of study was Latin grammar, the language of the church. While there were a few other subjects on offer, all were intended solely to prepare students for religious work, not creative thinking or academic engagement. There was music for religious services, astronomy and mathematics to set and interpret the church calendar, and law to prepare students for administrative roles in the church.

 

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Similarly, when Eton was founded in the 15th century by Henry VI, it was a charity school intended to provide free education to seventy boys. As Sir Henry Lyte wrote in his history of the school published in 1877, Eton reflected a renewed interest in the dissemination of knowledge, and that “a movement in popular education had set in.” He writes that the foundation of the school “is also important as marking a turning-point in the struggle between the regular and the secular clergy. During the middle ages the monasteries had been the principle seats of education in England, but their inefficiency had become notorious.” Lyte didn’t see it, perhaps, but it wasn’t so much a question of quality than it was a changing view toward the goal of education. The monasteries produced religious leaders, though the founders of Eton wanted instead to supply the universities with “scholars from a great grammar-school.” Ones that, in turn, would advance to positions of leadership within business and the military rather than the church.

That said, life at the school, by today’s standards, can seem strikingly monastic. Students were roused at 5 a.m., chanted prayers while they dressed, and were at their lessons by 6 a.m. They had two meals every day except Friday, when they weren’t fed at all. Lessons ended at 8 p.m. when all students went to bed.

When William Shakespeare attended King’s New School in Stratford, the school was open to all boys. There was no tuition. The only requirement for admission was the ability to read and write. “Pupils sat on hard wooden benches from six in the morning to five or six in the evening,” writes Bill Bryson, “with only two short pauses for refreshment, six days a week. … For much of the year they can hardly have seen daylight.” The school was, for the time, one of the best in the country. There Shakespeare learned Latin grammar and rhetoric (“one of the principle texts of the day,” writes Bryson, “taught pupils 150 different was of saying ‘Thank you for your letter’ in Latin”) and little else. “Whatever mathematics, history, or geography Shakespeare knew, he almost certainly didn’t learn it at grammar school.”

However daunting the experience may have been, the early boarding schools met the needs for which they were created, namely to educate boys into positions of religious leadership within a society that was organized, socially and politically, around religious life.

boarding schools
Illustration from A History of Eton College 1440-1875, by Sir Henry Churchill Maxwell Lyte. When the history was published in 1877, Eton had been operating as a boarding school for more than four centuries.

 

As society changed, so did the schools. At the time of the Reformation schools were removed from the authority of the church, marking an abrupt change in how education was conducted, and what it was intended to do. The Reformation coincided with (if not directly caused by) a decline in feudalism and a rise in nationalism, common law, and printed books.

Grammar schools soon reflected all of that, adopting new curricula and adjusting admissions in order to produce the human resources needed in post-Reformation England, one increasingly organized around the demands of a market economy. The result was the development in the sixteenth century of an educational curriculum based in humanism and a formulation of the liberal arts as we think of them today. The goal of education was to prepare free people for active roles in civic life. Debate, criminal law, logic and rhetoric were taught intensively for the first time. Math and geometry, once taught for the purposes of calendar making, were now taught also for the purposes of engineering and the maintenance of civic works. That kind of curriculum—liberal arts education grounded in classical languages and literature—persisted throughout Europe and North America well into the 20th century. While there has been a recent proliferation of alternative curricula, the foundation of education of North America still reflects those innovations undertaken in the 16th century. Often unwittingly, many of the alternative approaches do as well.

 

boarding schools
Eton, founded in the 15th century by Henry VI.

 

Imagining a better world

As Britain moved into the age of empire and industry, schools continued to evolve. By the 18th century—in response to Britain’s geographic and economic growth—students were learning modern languages, political leadership, military theory, and commerce. When Thomas Hughes wrote Tom Brown’s School Days in the 1830s, he used Rugby School as the setting, a school that his readers would have seen as strikingly modern. As he admitted at the time, Hughes created the characters of Tom and Dr. Arnold to illustrate how to live a good life and, by analogy, how to build a great nation. All the classic elements of the boarding school novel were there: students mentoring each other, a strong and empathetic teacher, sports and, inevitably, bullying and corporal punishment. With the help of friends and the advice of Dr. Arnold, Tom defeats the bully and becomes a mentor himself. He doesn’t cheat on homework, he plays cricket, and life goes on.

What would have struck early readers aren’t the things that strike us today. Corporal punishment, for example, would have seemed familiar, and not at all specific to boarding school. What also would have struck them were the educational reforms that Dr. Arnold brought to the school. What would have struck them were the educational reforms that Dr. Arnold brought to the school. Rugby wasn’t the King’s School, but something entirely different. Rugby was an example of a modern school addressing the needs of students in a modern world. Boys were encouraged to follow their desires, to think and act as individuals, and to choose their own path into religious, secular, or military life. That was big. Students, remarkably, were presented with options, choice, and an unprecedented range of individual autonomy.

Of course, there was also a dark side. While Hughes worked to show what boarding school could be, Dickens, as in Nicholas Nickleby, intended to show what it really was, exposing the faults that he found there. While writing the novel Dickens toured boarding schools, an experience that informed the fictional Dotheboys Hall, the boarding school for unwanted children that Nicholas attends. As cruel and abusive as the schoolmaster there may be, it seems that Dickens didn’t have to do much when creating the character—Mr. Squeers, even down to the wording of his business card, is a faithful portrait of William Shaw, a schoolmaster that Dickens had met. Not long after that meeting, Shaw was sued for blinding one of his students through physical abuse, malnourishment and neglect. Notes from the court case describe Shaw’s school, and the similarity between it and Dotheboys is striking.

The backbone of empire

Both Hughes and Dickens were writing at a time of intense change, both in England and the world. Indeed, it was change, specifically, that they were writing about. There was a significant rise in literacy, literature, and scientific inquiry. Schools were becoming more secular. There was a growing sense of how an individual might participate within society, and a greater awareness of the power of independent thinking.

During 1800s boarding schools cemented an association with the British ruling class, trading the religious focus for a military one. Sons of officers and administrators of the Empire attended boarding school while their parents fulfilled political and military postings overseas. The focus of education was diplomacy for the upper classes, and military life for those of lesser stature. Rudyard Kipling was an example of the former. He attended United Services College while his parents were stationed in India, an experience he wrote about in the novel Stalky & Co. Like Kipling himself, Stalky was educated to become part of the imperial machine. And he does. At the end of the book, fresh from that education, he is shown leading troops in India.

In life, as in fiction, boarding schools were part of the backbone of the empire, educating its military officers, senior clerics, lawyers, and administrators. They used the means that were popular for the time. Ben MacIntyre writes that Durnford School "epitomized the strange British faith in bad food, plenty of Latin and beatings from an early age.” At the school “there was no fresh fruit, no toilets with doors, no restraint on bullying, and no possibility of escape. Today such an institution would be illegal; in 1925 it was considered ‘character-forming.’”

School practices reflected a popular belief in social Darwinism—survival of the fittest—and that academic, moral, and physical strength were gained through challenge and adversity. Strict discipline, discomfort, even bullying was considered a necessary experience in the progress of moral and physical development. Royals experienced these things, too, not just students who came from poor families or who attended sub-standard schools. Thankfully, over the course of the 20th century, all of that would change.

Boarding in Canada

“What people teach their young is often what they think is most important. And so what people teach their children … in school gives us a very good sense of what the values of society are. What is it that you would like your children to learn? What is it that you’d like the next generation to learn?” 

—Margaret MacMillan

The oldest boarding school in Canada, King’s Collegiate School (now King’s-Edgehill School), in Windsor, Ontario, was founded by United Empire Loyalists in 1788. It was given royal assent by King George III the following year, the first instance that honour was bestowed outside Britain. Beginning with just 12 boys in a private home near Windsor, Nova Scotia, the school quickly set an educational standard for the region and, later, the country. It continues to hold a place in the national consciousness today. Because of the age and importance of the buildings, King’s College is a National Historic Site, a designation it has held since 1923.

King’s was created at moment of heightened political anxiety in the wake of the American Revolution. While there were schools in New York and New England, there were none in the British colonies that remained after American independence. The initial goal of the school was to prevent young men from traveling abroad to receive an education, men that would be needed to stay to administer and defend the colonies. While the school remained small, its alumni took prominent roles in military, legal, religious, and political life (including two fathers of Confederation).

King’s set the tone for other boarding schools that would be created in the British Empire outside of the UK. They were established so that the children of British ex-patriots could receive an authentically British education, as well as to retain and augment the human resources required to maintain the colonies. Schools throughout the commonwealth were organized in the same manner as their British counterparts—there were houses and headmasters, forms and terms—and reflected the values of Victorian England. The educational environment was much as we might imagine: high brow, strict, and reflective of all the class distinctions of the age. Leadership was an important topic, in part because it was of prime interest to many of the political leaders who sent their children to board. Further, the benefits were unequivocal—merely having gone to boarding school, regardless of any academic achievement there, was often considered a reasonable prerequisite to positions of leadership in business and political life.

Many of the best-known Canadian schools were founded in the late 19th century: Pickering College, 1842; Bishop Strachan School, 1867; Stanstead College, 1872; Ashbury College, 1891; St. Andrew's College, 1899. Life there, at least in the early days, was spartan and challenging in ways that no boarding school is today. At Upper Canada College, Frederick Hutt, a student in the 1830s, wrote to his brother, "I hope you will send plenty of nuts and cakes as I can hardly subsist on what we get."

Ted Rogers, founder of Rogers Communication, went to board when he was seven. Having had a nanny at home, he recalled that “I went from having somebody brushing my teeth for me to being caned if my teeth weren’t clean enough. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it was a bit of a shock.” He later described the school as his "a surrogate father" in the absence of his own father, who had passed away prior to his enrolment.

There was a strong association with the military, something that was still very prominent when Rogers arrived. The Cadet Corps of Upper Canada College was begun in 1869, and through its 127-year history it remained an integral part of school life. Students took part in regular drills and exercises, including those with active rounds. Boys were expected be prepared for deployment at any time, as occasionally they were. During the Fenian Raids of 1866 UCC students were mobilized to guard military buildings and the port in Toronto.

The cadet program was an expression of the spirit of volunteerism and the Victorian militia movement, and it maintained an ongoing association with the national military. Between 1875 and 1937 UCC produced six commanding officers of The Queen’s Own Rifles. During WWI, 1,089 volunteered for military service, and 176 gave their lives. In 1919, membership in the corps became compulsory for all students. None of this was unique to a particular to UCC school, with boarding schools and many public schools following suit. Many cadet corps remained active into the 1960s and 70s.

In time, however, the cadet programs began to feel less relevant, more relics of an earlier time. Which indeed they were, especially when real rifles were replaced with wooden ones, or when real training evolved into a kind of pantomime of military training, and when the relationship with the military became less explicit. At UCC the corps was formally retired in 1987, one of last of its kind in Canada. (Two schools, St. Andrews College and Bishop’s College School have active cadet corps, though for the most part the programs have evolved, becoming more akin to outdoor education programs than military.)

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List of boarding schools

 
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Oakville, Ontario — Appleby College in Oakville is recognized globally as one of Canada's leading independent schools. Breadth, excellence, innovation and caring are the characteristics that define the essence of the Appleby experience. View School Profile.


  • Over $5.0 million in financial assistance annually
  • 20 AP courses & AP Capstone programme
  • Social Emotional Learning and Positive Education
  • S. Bruce McLaughlin Northern Campus
  • Student Leadership programme
Grades:
7 to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Liberal Arts
Tuition:
$41,030 to $81,870
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
785
Avg. Class:
12 to 16
Appleby College 41030 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
 
 

Rosseau, Ontario — Through extraordinary learning opportunities rooted in meaningful outdoor education experiences in our unique natural environment, RLC graduates develop the skills, knowledge and confidence to take on any challenge. View School Profile.


  • Extraordinary learning opportunities embedded in rich outdoor education experiences.
  • 100% of our 2020 graduates were accepted at their top schools of choice.
  • Discovery Days that challenge students to imagine, create and articulate independent projects.
  • Seven Generations Program celebrating Indigenous teachings and culture.
  • Essential learning that builds leaders and global stewards.
Grades:
6 to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Progressive
Tuition:
$11,350 to $66,300
Living:
Day/Boarding
Enrollment:
120
Avg. Class:
15 to 18
Rosseau Lake College 11350 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
 
 

Belleville, Ontario — At Albert College, every student is an 'A' student. From Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 12 our students experience all 5 of the Albert 'A’ s; Academics, Arts, Athletics, Active Citizenship and Adventure programming. View School Profile.


  • Over 160 years of experience
  • Scholarships, bursaries and financial assistance available
  • Live-in, full time boarding staff
  • International student body from 20+ countries
  • Inclusive, welcoming and supportive family environment
Grades:
JK to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Traditional
Tuition:
$18,700 to $75,400
Living:
Day/Boarding
Enrollment:
303
Avg. Class:
15
Albert College 18700 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
 
 

Port Hope, Ontario — At TCS, an excellent education means students remain open to learning throughout life and doing something positive with what they have learned. View School Profile.


  • AP Capstone school with extensive AP course offerings
  • Rural campus setting with 100 acres of fields and facilities
  • Academic and service learning travel education programs
  • Personalized guidance and support for academics and health and wellness
  • State-of-the-art athletic centre
Grades:
5 to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Traditional
Tuition:
$28,000 to $77,500
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
570
Avg. Class:
12 to 16
Trinity College School 28000 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
 
 

Toronto, Ontario — Located in the heart of Toronto, UCC provides transformational learning experiences with exceptional day and boarding programs. Our highly sought-after graduates are awarded International Baccalaureate and OSSD diplomas. View School Profile.


  • High-achieving, all-round students
  • Challenging but rewarding IB program
  • First rate academics, athletics and arts
  • 19 different sports and 80+ clubs
  • Boutique urban boarding program
Grades:
SK to 12 (Boys)
Type:
Liberal Arts, International Baccalaureate
Tuition:
$36,750 to $71,875
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
1200
Avg. Class:
20 to 25
Upper Canada College 36750 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Boys
 
 

Toronto, Ontario — Branksome Hall is Toronto’s only all-girls, all-years International Baccalaureate (IB) World School developing the leaders of tomorrow through the nurturing of curiosity and critical thinking at every age. View School Profile.


  • 13-acre downtown campus
  • Athletics and Wellness Centre
  • IB programs: JK to Grade 12
  • Leadership opportunities
  • Boarding starting in Grade 7
Grades:
JK to 12 (Girls)
Type:
Liberal Arts, International Baccalaureate
Tuition:
$37,130 to $75,020
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
960
Avg. Class:
16 to 22
Branksome Hall 37130 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Girls
 
 

Scarborough, Ontario — RCS’s purpose is to unleash the potential in each student and set them on the path for a successful life. We provide rigorous academics with individual attention in a diverse, energizing, and caring environment. View School Profile.


  • Rigorous progressive academics
  • Small class sizes (10-15 students in each class)
  • Individual attention and care from teachers and guidance counselors to guarantee academic success
  • Best-in-class elite & developmental basketball programs led by renowned coaches
  • Diverse student body with international students from all over the world and elite student athletes
Grades:
7 to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Progressive
Tuition:
$22,800
Living:
Day/Boarding
Enrollment:
300
Avg. Class:
10 to 15
Royal Crown School 22800 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
 
 

Toronto, Ontario — Havergal has been preparing young women to make a difference since 1894 through its innovative curriculum and future-ready programming with a focus on wellness and student agency. View School Profile.


  • Beautiful 22-acre campus in the heart of Toronto.
  • Innovative curriculum and future-ready programming for students.
  • Small class sizes with a focus on wellness and student agency.
  • Award-winning Art, Music and Drama departments.
  • More than 80 co-curricular athletic teams.
Grades:
JK to 12 (Girls)
Type:
Liberal Arts
Tuition:
$36,950 to $68,540
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
1000
Avg. Class:
18 to 22
Havergal College 36950 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Girls
 
 

Toronto, Ontario — The Bishop Strachan School is a leading independent JK-Grade 12 day & boarding school for girls. Students build the academic skills to thrive at university and beyond. Over $2 million available in financial assistance. View School Profile.


  • Founded in 1867
  • Specializing in the learning needs of the 'whole girl'
  • Co-curricular programs and clubs
  • 100 per cent university placement
  • Extensive leadership opportunities
Grades:
JK to 12 (Girls)
Type:
Progressive, Reggio Emilia
Tuition:
$35,800 to $69,145
Living:
Day/Boarding
Enrollment:
1000
Avg. Class:
18 to 20
The Bishop Strachan School 35800 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Girls
 
 

Windsor, Ontario — JK- 12/IB/AP , inter-faith/R.C.co-ed day, and boarding located in Windsor, ON Family of Schools includes Nursery, Elementary and Secondary Schools, athletic facilities, performing arts wing (music and dance studios). View School Profile.


  • Small student teacher ratio
  • Average class size of 12 students
  • Offering courses from three different curricula (IB, AP and OSSD)
  • Individual student care
  • Family atmosphere
Grades:
JK to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Traditional, International Baccalaureate
Tuition:
$10,950 to $50,000
Living:
Day/Boarding
Enrollment:
250
Avg. Class:
10 to 16
Académie Ste-Cécile International School 10950 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
 
 

Lakefield, Ontario — Focussed on Community First, Outdoors Every Day, and Authentic Learning, LCS offers a world-class, individualized, day/boarding program (Grades 9 -12) designed for students to be leaders who care, connect and contribute. View School Profile.


  • Worldwide university acceptances
  • 315 acres on Lake Katchewanooka
  • AP Capstone School
  • Harkness Method
  • Leadership, Character Values Program
Grades:
9 to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Liberal Arts
Tuition:
$35,700 to $75,400
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
425
Avg. Class:
15
Lakefield College School 35700 HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
 
 

Waterloo Region (Breslau), Ontario — SJK offers an enriched environment of exploration and experiential learning. Through its IB curriculum, SJK provides exciting experiences and guides students to discover their talents and passions. Go beyond at SJK. View School Profile.


  • Accredited IB World Continuum School
  • Experienced, passionate, professional teachers
  • Project-based, design-thinking experiential learning
  • Extensive co-curricular programmes in athletics, arts, leadership and community service
  • Outdoor experiential learning
Grades:
JK to 12 (Coed)
Type:
Progressive, International Baccalaureate
Tuition:
$19,720 to $73,700
Living:
Boarding/Day
Enrollment:
470
Avg. Class:
10 to 17
St. John's-Kilmarnock School 19720 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Laval, Quebec
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $13,150 to $20,900

North Star Academy Laval is the only private English high school in Laval. We offer small classroom sizes for individualized attention. We teach not only for school but for life! Certificate of eligibility not required.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
North Star Academy 13150 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Stanstead, Quebec
    Dufferin Street/Willow Lane
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $23,900 to $74,900

An English school in a French milieu, Stanstead College is located on the Quebec-Vermont border, offering rigorous university-prep, Grades 7 to 12, in a secure, family-focused learning environment.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Stanstead College 23900 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Geneva, Ohio(USA)
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • US $42,000 to US $65,000

SPIRE ACADEMY is an international, high school and post graduate sports performance training and education academy, located within a world class event and wellness complex.

  • Boarding
  • Progressive
SPIRE Academy 42000 HighSchools Boarding Coed
  • Victoria, British Columbia
    Richmond Rd/McRae Ave
  • K to 12 Coed
  • $22,150 to $79,130

Independent Kindergarten to Grade 12 boarding and day school in Victoria, BC, Canada focusing on outstanding preparation for life. Find out how a SMUS education can benefit your family.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
St. Michaels University School 22150 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Victoria, British Columbia
  • JK to 12 Girls
  • $18,860 to $72,555

St. Margaret's School offers inter-disciplinary and experiential learning from JK3 to Grade 12. Confidence, leadership and academic rigor lead to student success.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
St. Margaret's School 18860 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Girls
  • Toronto, Ontario
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $10,000 to $29,300

Located in the heart of Toronto, McDonald International Academy offers programs for grades 9 to 12 . Our average class size is 10 to 20 students.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
McDonald International Academy 10000 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Caledon, Ontario
  • 5 to 12 Coed
  • $24,500 to $53,000

The Hill Academy is Canada's premier independent school for dedicated student-athletes. Students are challenged in a supportive, environment to explore the boundaries of their academic, athletic and leadership potential.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
The Hill Academy 24500 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Wellandport, Ontario
  • 5 to 12 Boys
  • $61,200 to $65,200

Robert Land Academy, established in 1978, is a private military-inspired boarding school (Gr 5-12) helping boys to experience validation, realize their potential and gain admission to post-secondary programs.

  • Boarding
  • Traditional
Robert Land Academy 61200 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Boys
  • Belleville, Ontario
  • 1 to 12 Coed
  • $28,944 to $83,937

We are a therapeutic boarding school for Gr. 1-12 students requiring individualized academic, clinical, and behaviour-management solutions in small class sizes and professional home stay or boarding environments

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
Applewood Academy for Progressive Learning 28944 Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Rothesay, New Brunswick
    Rothesay Rd/College Hill Rd
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • $24,520 to $69,100

Our unique, daily Advisor Program ensures every student is surrounded by a strong network of highly qualified, dedicated faculty and staff whose mission is to provide academic, emotional, and social guidance and support.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
  • International Baccalaureate
Rothesay Netherwood School 24520 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Burlington, Ontario
    Hwy 6/Dundas Street
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $9,600 to $40,300

Our belief is “Forward Learning. Transforming People”. We focus on developing 21st century learning skills through collaborative discussions and inquiry-based thinking to prepare students with global competencies.

  • Boarding/Day/eSchool
  • Traditional
Laureate College 9600 HighSchools Boarding Day eSchool Coed
  • Stratford, Ontario
    Ontario Street/Waterloo Street South
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $9,750 to $37,275

Stratford, Ontario, Private Secondary School dedicated to inspiring students to achieve their individual potential through academic excellence while fostering a spirit of service to society.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
Nancy Campbell Academy 9750 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Victoria, British Columbia
  • JK to 12 Coed
  • $9,345 to $73,145

GNS is an independent JK-12 International Baccalaureate boarding and day school in Victoria, BC, that challenges and supports each of our students to do their best through truth and courage in learning and in life.

  • Boarding/Day/Homestay
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Glenlyon Norfolk School 9345 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Homestay Coed
  • Fort Erie, Ontario
    Townline Rd./Niagara Parkway
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • $42,425 to $50,425

Niagara Christian Collegiate offers both middle school and secondary school programs from Grades 6-12. Graduating students achieve top university placements around the world. We accept both day and boarding students.

  • Boarding/Homestay
  • Traditional
Niagara Christian Collegiate 42425 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Homestay Coed
  • Victoria, British Columbia
  • 4 to 12 Coed
  • $9,500 to $52,000

Brookes Westshore, an IB World School on beautiful Vancouver Island, BC, offers grades 4 to 12 and both day and boarding programmes, with an average class size of 15 students.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Brookes Westshore 9500 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • South Wales, New York(USA)
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • US $48,000 to US $68,000

The Gow School is a special needs private school that offers programs for grades seven through 12 in South Wales, New York.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
The Gow School 48000 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Markham, Ontario
    Woodbine Av./Hwy 7
  • PS to 12 Coed
  • $16,500 to $40,800

Since 2002, J. Addison has provided a stimulating education for students. Located at the corner of Woodbine and Valleywood Drive in Markham, ON, Canada, you will find our state-of-the-art 58,000 sq. ft. facility.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Montessori
J. Addison School 16500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Calgary, Alberta
    12 Ave SW/8 St SW
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $16,400 to $24,415

Established in 1991, Alberta Ballet School is recognized as one of Canada’s leading professional dance schools. with an annual enrollment of approximately 100 local, national and international students.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
Alberta Ballet School 16400 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
    Langside St./Westminster Ave.
  • PS to 12 Girls
  • $16,500 to $69,400

We offer a supportive environment for girls’ learning with a strong sense of community. We encourage the love of learning in a place of belonging that nurtures resilience, inspires creativity, and celebrates diversity.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Balmoral Hall School 16500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Girls
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
    South Dr/North Dr
  • K to 12 Coed
  • $24,800 to $67,900

SJR is the world’s leading school in Debating and Public Speaking. It has produced 18 Rhodes scholars and 3 math olympiads. 98% of SJR graduates are accepted to their first choice university program.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
  • Reggio Emilia
St. John's-Ravenscourt School 24800 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Windsor, Nova Scotia
    College Rd/King St
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • $19,950 to $63,550

Benefitting from its safe and beautiful Nova Scotia location, King's-Edgehill facilitates the opportunity for every student to Be More – in the classroom, on the sports fields, on stage, in the community and beyond.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
King's-Edgehill School 19950 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • York, -
  • NS to 12 Coed
  • $74,000 to $88,000

Set in 220 acres of North Yorkshire countryside, Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate welcomes girls and boys from 3 months old to 19 years, with 81% A*/A achieved at A Level. Fees range from £16,005 to £19,200 per term.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Queen Ethelburga's Collegiate 74000 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Newmarket, Ontario
    Mulock Drive/Bayview Avenue
  • JK to 12 Coed
  • $29,255 to $72,055

Pickering College's fully-integrated Global Leadership Program (JK to Grade 12) inspires students to become agents of courageous, ethical and positive change with the confidence, knowledge and skills to shape the future.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Progressive
Pickering College 29255 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Mill Bay, British Columbia
  • 8 to 12 Coed
  • $28,000 to $87,000

Brentwood is a leading university prep school that brings to life student choice through its bold tripartite program. We are a true boarding school, not merely a school with boarding, and the ocean is our playground.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
Brentwood College School 28000 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • North Vancouver, British Columbia
    Harbourside Drive/
  • 8 to 12 Coed
  • $25,250 to $47,725

Bodwell High School in North Vancouver is a boarding school that enrolls 650 students. Tuition starts at $21,500. We provide Education for a Changing World. The school's motto is "Strength in Diversity."

  • Day/Homestay/Boarding
  • Progressive
Bodwell High School 25250 HighSchools Day Homestay Boarding Coed
  • Brockville, Ontario
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • $2,000 to $61,413

Our intercultural environment offers an individualized approach to learning and highly differentiated instruction, with emphasis on STEM+A & AP courses. Our students enjoy a dynamic academic & residential life program.

  • Boarding/eSchool/Day
  • Progressive
Fulford Academy 2000 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding eSchool Day Coed
  • Montreal, Quebec
    Atwater/Docteur-Penfield
  • 7 to 12 Girls
  • $19,430 to $40,743

Since 1861, The Sacred Heart School of Montreal, the city’s only all-girls English Catholic high school, has been preparing girls to change the world. We offer grades 7 to 12, day school and boarding.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
The Sacred Heart School of Montreal 19430 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Day Boarding Girls
  • Montverde, Florida(USA)
  • PS to 12 Coed
  • US $15,315 to US $52,925

Founded in 1912, Montverde Academy is an elite college preparatory school for students in grades Pre-K3 through post-graduate studies with a distinct student population from over 80 countries worldwide.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Montverde Academy 15315 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Markham, Ontario
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $5,000 to $18,000 /semester

Markham, Ontario; IB School; OSSD; OSSD online credit course; NOIC ACADEMY’s annual university enrolment rate is 100% and more than 85% of graduates are admitted by University of Toronto.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
NOIC Academy 5000 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Bracebridge, Ontario
  • 1 to 12 Coed
  • $6,400 to $28,000

Dewey’s educational goals follow the philosophies of John Dewey, preparing students through “student-centred learning" and "learning by doing", while emphasizing the cultivation of the "three New Liberal Arts".

  • Boarding/Day/eSchool
  • Traditional
Dewey Institute 6400 Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day eSchool Coed
  • Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia
  • 8 to 12 Coed
  • $33,205 to $83,615

Beginning in Grade 8, our unique Shawnigan journey purposefully guides students through a distinct, unparalleled and bold educational experience on our stunning waterfront campus on Canada’s beautiful West Coast.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
Shawnigan Lake School 33205 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Houghton, New York(USA)
  • 6 to 12 Coed
  • US $7,499 to US $43,000

A private Christian college prep school with students from 60 countries, providing students with a unique opportunity to learn high academics, faith education and multicultural immersion.

  • eSchool/Boarding/Day/Homestay
  • Traditional
Houghton Academy 7499 MiddleSchools HighSchools eSchool Boarding Day Homestay Coed
  • Sherbrooke, Quebec
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $30,000 to $75,710

Bishop's College School is an English boarding and day school for students in grades 7 through 12. Small in size and culturally diverse, BCS is an IB World School offering the IB Diploma Programme and Canadian curricula.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
Bishop's College School 30000 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Rome, ---------------
    Ponte Sublicio/Lungotevere Aventino
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • EUR €25,650 to EUR €39,600

Since 1964, SSS Rome has provided International Boarding and Day Students with a culturally inspiring and rigorous academic IB education in the heart of Ancient Rome.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
  • International Baccalaureate
St. Stephen's School, Rome 25650 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Richmond, British Columbia
    Lansdowne Road/Kwantlen Street
  • 10 to 12 Coed
  • $22,000 to $37,950

MLWS-KPU offers a truly unique high school experience. Students receive the support and community of small high school classes along with the academic opportunities of learning within world-class university facilities.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
Maple Leaf World Schools - Canada 22000 Day Boarding Day Coed
  • Toronto, Ontario
    Finch Avenue/Islington Avenue
  • JK to 12 Coed
  • $8,400 to $30,000

Nile Academy offers small class sizes and a low student-to-teacher ratio, while also following the Ontario Curriculum, ensuring our students are well prepared for the rest of their educational pursuits here in Canada.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Progressive
Nile Academy 8400 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Mississauga, Ontario
    Hurontario/Bronte College Ct
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $16,500 to $40,000

Bronte College is a private International Baccalaureate (IB) World School offering Grades 9 to 12 for day and boarding students. Our academic programming has attracted students from over 30 countries.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Bronte College 16500 HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Duncan, British Columbia
    Brownsey Avenue/Government Street
  • PS to 12 Coed
  • $14,413 to $69,313

Queen Margaret's School is a gender inclusive independent day/boarding university preparatory school in Duncan, BC that focuses on preparing young trailblazers...no two journeys are the same.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
Queen Margaret's School 14413 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Aurora, Ontario
    St. John's Sideroad/Yonge Street
  • 5 to 12 Boys
  • $39,655 to $74,355

With a tradition dating back to 1899, St. Andrew's remains the single largest all-boys boarding school in Canada. Our 126-acre campus provides our students with an ideal setting for learning and growth.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
St. Andrew's College 39655 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Boys
  • Whitby, Ontario
    Garden Street/Hwy. 2
  • 4 to 12 Girls
  • $26,125 to $70,625

Trafalgar Castle offers a close-knit, academically challenging environment where girls feel a strong sense of belonging and discover their unique talents and interests.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Liberal Arts
Trafalgar Castle School 26125 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Girls
  • Lanciano,
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • EUR €39,000

Canadian College Italy provides a nurturing environment on our beautiful historic campus so that students may experience an intellectual awakening — a passion for the pursuit of reason, human connection, and curiosity.

  • Boarding
  • Traditional
Canadian College Italy 39000 HighSchools Boarding Coed
  • Toronto, Ontario
    Keele St/Dundas St
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $1,200 to $27,120

Reputed Diverse Traditional Day School. 100% of students graduate and move on to excel in their Post Secondary Education and life. Extremely positive, caring, and knowledgeable teaching staff.

  • Homestay/eSchool/Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Great Lakes College of Toronto 1200 HighSchools Homestay eSchool Boarding Day Coed
  • Beamsville, Ontario
    Exit 64/QEW
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $11,300 to $39,400

Grade 9-12 students are encouraged to be confident servant-leaders. Student diversity provides a global perspective of life and faith. Great Lakes' graduates are accepted by colleges and universities of their choice.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
Great Lakes Christian High School 11300 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Erda, Utah
    Droubay Rd/Erda Way
  • 7 to 12 Girls
  • US $120,000

Alpine Academy isn't just a school, it is an experience that prepares young women for life beyond our campus. Students learn to engage in not only academics, but also family, community, and interpersonal relationships.

  • Boarding
  • Traditional
Alpine Academy 120000 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Girls
  • Rosthern, Saskatchewan
  • 10 to 12 Coed
  • $3,950 to $27,500

RJC is a Grades 10-12 boarding school accredited by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education. RJC is student and community-focused all while offering excellent academics and exceptional athletic and fine arts programs.

  • Homestay/Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
Rosthern Junior College High School 3950 Homestay Boarding Day Coed
  • Summerland, British Columbia
  • JK to 12 Coed
  • $12,945 to $56,500

UNISUS was founded by the leaders of the top Private Schools in BC. Based on IB Education/Innovation/Technology, Entrepreneurship/ Outdoor Education. Boarding, Athletics and Global Partnerships/Opportunities.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Unisus School 12945 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Regina, Saskatchewan
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $9,530 to $45,180

Luther College High School values excellence in teaching and cares for our students as individuals in our tight-knit community. Our focus in on the whole student - social, emotional, intellectual, physical and spiritual.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Liberal Arts
  • International Baccalaureate
Luther College High School 9530 HighSchools Day Boarding Coed
  • Hamilton, Ontario
    Main St. W./Longwood Rd. S.
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $2,025 to $2,700 /course

Columbia International College is Canada’s largest private boarding school, offering Grade 9 to 12 programs. #1 in scholarships awarded by universities. The University of Toronto's official Global Partner School.

  • Day/Boarding
  • Traditional
Columbia International College 2025 HighSchools Day Day Boarding Coed
  • Wilcox, Saskatchewan
    Railway Ave/Rouleau St
  • 8 to 12 Coed
  • $11,000 to $54,600

Notre Dame is a private, independent co-educational high school with an exceptional educational & boarding experience with a balance of strong academic, athletic and spiritual growth in a safe & caring prairie community.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Athol Murray College of Notre Dame 11000 HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • St Catharines, Ontario
    Ontario St./Welland Ave.
  • NS to 12 Coed/Girls
  • $350 to $5,200

Heuristic & autodidactic, inspired by Sudbury & democratic models. Students are self-directed, holistically empowered. Voluntary attendance, year-round calendar, agency, & consent inspire free learning.

  • Day/eSchool/Boarding/Homestay
  • Progressive
Agate Private School 350 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day eSchool Boarding eSchool Homestay Coed Girls
  • Montreal, Quebec
    De Maisonneuve West/Park Row West
  • K to 12 Coed
  • $22,550 to $43,550

At Kells, flexibility is the key. We develop programs allowing students to work within their comfort zone, which may be above, below or at grade level. The result is students who outperform even their own expectations.

  • Boarding/Homestay/Day
  • Traditional
Kells Academy 22550 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Homestay Day Coed
  • London, Ontario
    Richmond Street/King Street
  • 9 to 12 Coed/Girls
  • $25,600 to $32,000

A Canadian Private Secondary Boarding school, located in the heart of London, Ontario. LIA is authorized to grant the Ontario Secondary School Diploma and International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme.

  • Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
London International Academy 25600 HighSchools Boarding Boarding Coed Girls
  • Windsor, Ontario
    Hwy 401/Cousineau Road
  • 5 to 12 Coed
  • $17,500 to $67,500

In a welcoming environment , HFAS assists our exceptional learners to reach their potential and to succeed. We focus on personal responsibility, initiative, independence, organization, self-regulation and time management

  • Boarding/Day
  • Liberal Arts
Holy Family Achievement School of Académie Ste-Cécile 17500 MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Ottawa, Ontario
    Mariposa Avenue/Springfield
  • 4 to 12 Coed
  • $32,110 to $74,230

This traditional private school in Ottawa, Ontario offers Grades 4 to 12 with 100 boarding and 600 day school students. Tuition is from $30,585 to $71,720.

  • Day/Homestay/Boarding
  • Traditional
  • International Baccalaureate
Ashbury College 32110 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Homestay Boarding Coed
  • Gretna, Manitoba
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $6,285 to $26,435

Faith is at the center of all we do at MCI- from the court, to the stage, to the classroom. We work to provide a safe space for students to ask questions, dig deeper, grow into who God is calling them to be.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
Mennonite Collegiate Institute 6285 HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Rigaud, Quebec
    Rue Saint-Pierre/Rue Bourget
  • PS to 12 Coed
  • $4,700 to $35,000

Collège Bourget is a day & boarding school situated between Montreal & Ottawa. The school offers Quebec's french program from Grade 7 till Grade 11 and english program from Grade 10 till Grade 12.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
College Bourget 4700 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Merrickville, Ontario
    St. Lawrence Street/Elgin Street
  • 9 to 12 Coed
  • $16,450 to $58,200

Merrick Preparatory offers grades 9-12 and a University Qualification Year to students preparing for successful admission to degree programs in the world's top universities, in a safe and secure family environment.

  • Day/Boarding/eSchool
  • Traditional
Merrick Preparatory School 16450 HighSchools Day Boarding eSchool Coed
  • St. Catharines, Ontario
    Ridley Road/Henrietta Street
  • JK to 12 Coed
  • $22,950 to $79,815

Ridley College is an acclaimed co-educational IB boarding and day school that prepares meaningful and flourishing lives by teaching the habits of mind, body, and spirit, and the values needed to lead in a global society.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Progressive
  • International Baccalaureate
Ridley College 22950 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Coed
  • Brantford, Ontario
    Colborne/Clarence
  • 7 to 12 Coed
  • $7,700 to $26,500

At Haven, we equip our students with critical thinking skills, a global perspective, and a respect for core values of honesty, loyalty, perseverance, and compassion.

  • Day/Boarding/eSchool
  • Traditional
Haven International School 7700 MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Boarding eSchool Coed
  • Markham, Ontario
    14th Ave/Kennedy
  • NS to 12 Coed
  • $11,500 to $37,500

Trillium School is a private school that offers programs from pre-school to grade twelve in Markham with Montessori-based kindergarten.

  • Boarding/Day
  • Traditional
  • Montessori
Trillium School 11500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Boarding Day Day Coed

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