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Delano Academy & Delano High:
The Our Kids Report > Reviews
Grades Preschool TO 12 — Maple, ON (Map)


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Delano Academy & Delano High:
THE OUR KIDS REPORT
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Roundtable Q&A Discussion About Delano Academy & Delano High (2020)

Delano Academy & Delano High alumni, current students, and parents shared their insights on the school’s culture, values, strengths, and weaknesses. Hear what Ms. Sporvieri, Dayna Bruner, Ms. Pascale, Ms. Tavernasie had to say about the school.

Video Contents

Highlights from the Q&A discussion

Ms. Sporvieri — current parent

Ms. Sporvieri has two children that currently attend Delano Academy, in Grades 3 and 7. They both love school, and think of their school community as a second family.

  • “So my boys have become very independent and I think Delano Academy has a lot to do with that … our kids spend 90 percent of their time at school. They're hardly ever home. They're always at school. I think that has a lot to do with the school itself, the teachers, and everybody that works there.”
  • “I think that you guys have exceeded my expectations right now. [Delano Academy] is awesome. I think you guys are great, and the kids love it, and you can see it. It makes a big difference.”
  • “I have to tell you that even when there's no school, my kids ask, ‘can we go to school?’ That's how much they love Delano Academy. You know what,  I thought after the pandemic, and after being online [for classes], they would have been done. [I thought] they would have been like, ‘oh, my God’, but you guys were so awesome with them, that every morning they get up and run downstairs.”
  • “[My kids] were so excited that they went out and told everybody what an awesome school, what great teachers, what great friends they have. It's like they have a big family, and they love the work, even though they say it's challenging. That's what makes it so great, because they listen to their friends, talk about their schools, and they're like, ‘you don't know what you're missing [at Delano].”
  • “Obviously, we want [Delano Academy] to grow much bigger, but my boys say what makes you guys so special, is that the connection that you guys have, and the size [the school is] right now is so unique to every individual. [The school] knows so much about every single child that comes there. They love that [Delano Academy] caters to everybody… .”
  • “What we get through the Delano Academy is you guys are setting them up. Whether they stay until Grade 8, or move on in Grade 12 ... basically you guys are setting them up to what life is going to be when they leave ... through the learning and the teaching with technology and all the programs that you guys have to offer.”
  • “ Whatever you guys are doing, I'm sure the kids are loving it, because they're happy no matter what. You really would think they would not be happy right now [because of COVID], but they are.”
  • “If someone is shy or uncomfortable, I'm going to speak for my boys. They come home and they say, ‘you know, there's new kids at school and they're really shy, and we want to make them feel comfortable, and we want to make them feel like they're part of us.’ They never leave [new students] out.”
  • “We try to make everybody feel comfortable … everybody's nervous on the first day of school, if you're new … . Not only [the students], I'm sure the teachers are doing that, but if that's the way you guys are making everybody feel, that makes a big difference … you would want someone to treat you like that.”

Dayna Bruner — current parent

Ms. Bruner is a parent of one son who is entering a combination of Grades 6 and 7 this year. He has different needs, and learning abilities, that the Delano Academy accommodates and welcomes.

  • “The first time I met with the school, I didn't get resistance... Instead, I got acceptance, and [Delano Academy] understood who my kid was. They knew, just like I did, that if you solve the academic problem, then the social and emotional issues can be dealt with just as easily. A lot of the time the social and emotional kind of acts up, because the academics aren't satisfied.”
  • “This year [my son] is in Grade 7 for most of his classes, and Grade 6 for a few of his classes. It was that acceptance that really brought us to this school. It felt like coming home, it felt like coming to a place where they just got you, and not only understood my kid, but understood the struggle of the entire family. It continues to be this safe place, this place where he can be himself, either on a good day or a bad day, because he does have bad days.”
  • “[My son] is understood, and he's accepted. It's home for all of us, not just him.”
  • “The teachers and everyone respected him, and they would speak with him with respect. They would understand that, sometimes, he [doesn’t act his] biological age. He's either older or younger. And they were very adept at recognizing which age kid they were talking to. Sometimes that would switch mid sentence, and they were just able to adapt to that.”
  • “I didn't realize that teachers and staff could care as much as they do, not just about the academics, but about the whole child, everything about that child. I also really appreciate how in class they say the curriculum sometimes is a little bit controversial, in that they'll speak about news items. They've spoken about Black Lives Matter, and they've gone through studying the holidays. [Delano Academy] doesn't just do the big [holidays]; they do all of them. It's about respecting everyone, and learning that there are things in your life that are beyond your own nose. They talk about that stuff, and they do it respectfully, and they do it very appropriately, but they address them. So it exceeded my expectations when we started in Grade 3, and it still far exceeded my expectations of what the school is.”
  • “We didn't know what to expect about [my son's] health. [My son's] world was falling apart except for school. That really had an impact on him, and on all of us. [Delano Academy] kept us all on a routine. My other kids were home, and we kind of kept our routine going the same as Delano, it gave us all stability during that time.”
  • “[My son] is up and ready to go [to school], his uniform on, his bag is packed with everything before I come downstairs. [After], he comes home and logs in and does his homework, before I have the chance to ask, ‘do you have any homework today’? In the car ride home, he tells me voluntarily about what he did at recess, who he hung out with, what was discussed in science class or in history class, or what current event is getting discussed in language class, and what the assignments are. It's the voluntary information that speaks more volumes to me, than when I say,’ how was your day today?’”
  • “Delano Academy is about forward thinking, and gaining knowledge, and caring, and thoughtfulness, and all of those traits that we all want for our kids, but sometimes parents aren't the best teachers to instill that in them. That is where the teachers and staff come in. That kind of leads into the families. We all want the best for our kids. We are all we're, we're pretty frank about our kids, too. We tend to know that while they are all great children, they are not perfect.”
  • “On my son's first day back in Grade 3, he was assigned a buddy in his class to show him around, show him where the bathrooms are, from where lockers are introduced and eat lunch with him, that sort of thing. So, there was an immediate connection, and that bled into who are you going to play with at recess and the idea of being included, and having instant friends. So, the buddy system worked really well.” 
  • “It goes back to the idea of inclusiveness and acceptance. … You walk in the doors. You are part of this family. And that is very much instilled into the kids.”
  • “You are immediately part of a family, and part of this sense of belonging … / The shyness of having to meet and make all these new friends dissipates very quickly because of how [Delano Academy] is just set up to be inclusive, and to [promote] oneness and just wholeness.”

Ms. Pascale — current parent

Ms. Pascale has a daughter that currently attends Delano Academy. She enrolled this year as a Grade 6 student, and has had no trouble making new friends, thanks to Delano Academy’s welcoming and nurturing environment.

  • “I was particularly careful in my choice because we were a black family...  and I had some fears and apprehensions about that because I wanted to make sure that she would be welcomed and accepted, but in a seamless way that it wouldn't be hard, or difficult, and I have found this at Delano Academy, and I'm so happy about that.” 
  • “I saw the curriculum offered at Delano Academy, and it spoke to me. … I know that this gift, the investment that I'm making [in my daughter] so that she will be ready for whatever the future holds. French and English happen to be important.”
  • “Many things have impressed me [about Delano Academy], but the one thing that stood out specifically from my daughter's perspective, is how many students she knows. One of the biggest hesitations for my daughter to move to a new school was ... ‘How am I going to make friends?’ Now, every day she has come to me and mentions new names of new students that she's engaged with and met.”
  • “Delano Academy has absolutely exceeded my expectations, because she has friends not just in her class, but also in other grades that are part of her cohort. ... So that's one way I think that my expectations have been exceeded, and she's adjusted well in large part because of that.”
  • I have been trying every which way, trying to rephrase my question [of what my daughter does not like about Delano Academy] in so many different ways, and the answer is a blank. I cannot get from her anything that she does not like [about Delano Academy]. I have asked and I've tried.”
  • “[Three words to describe Delano Academy are] authentic, fun, and approachable.”
  • “It's that amazing balance of valuing the child, each child, knowing their names, who they are. For a child, it is so comforting knowing that they matter and really feeling it … but that doesn't trump the collective. You’re part of a house team. You're part of a class. There's the respect that [Delano Students] have to have for each other. You have to learn how to coexist. You're all important, individually, but also as a group.”
  • “[Delano Academy] is in such alignment with me and my family and the way that we value our kids … . I don't just care about my kids. I care about the kids in the community, in the neighbourhood, in the schools as well, because I want all of them to do well. I find the Delano's showing such an incredible balance between these two complementary sets of values. ”
  • “Delano knows [wellness] is important and they're going to do something about it … . I'm so pleased with that. The wellness side is really taken care of and it's raised in importance and value. I think the kids can then grow up to value that as well, and I like that.”

Ms. Tavernasie — current parent

Ms. Tavernasie has a daughter that currently attends Delano Academy. She enrolled this year as a Grade 6 student when her mother began working there as a teacher.

  • “My daughter has never been happier. She's finally at a school where she's challenged in certain areas that she absolutely needed to be challenged in ... and also emotionally and peer wise. As we know, the last year has been exceptionally difficult, particularly for our children with the lockdown, and everything else that they're trying to process around that mentally. She desperately needed something like [Delano Academy].”
  • “It's overwhelming in such a beautiful way, that Delano is truly a family and she needs that. So, scholastically she's getting it, peer wise she's getting it, mentally and psychologically, she's getting it. It's just really an incredible program. I'm not just saying that because I teach there. So, on the next note, because I teach there, I can truly say that it's just a really strong program in every way, and it's such an incredible team as well.”
  • “Delano Academy has also exceeded my expectations, because it's small .. .but also with their teachers, and the adults who are there. I think Miss Bruner also touched on that as well, that the relationships are closely tied. Not only that, but they're not allowed to get away with anything, but it's done in a very respectful way.”
  • “They don't get lost in the herd, and [any issues are] recognized, and it's called upon immediately. They are always nipping things in the bud. There's never anything allowed to go past. This is remarkable to me, and it's purely on the students, it has nothing to do with teachers or otherwise—I'm amazed by these children coming out of a pandemic.”
  • “[The students] all play with each other. They're all involved with each other's lives. They're so in tune with each other. Unfortunately, of course, [because of COVID] we must divide the school into two different cohorts. [My daughters] cohort, they're so tight, they're so closely related. It's exciting to see. Doesn't matter if they're in Grade 6, 7, or 8, they're very closely tied.”
  • “The students who are needing to be more challenged, [Delano Academy] allows them to take leadership roles. So this is kind of exciting to see as well.”
  • “I think the biggest impact is that [my daughter] is that she is just so excited to go to school now, that's monumental for us. Prior to her coming [to Delano Academy], she was just kind of just not seen, [she was] lost. She was lost in the class.[My daughter] needed that challenge that she rises to. Competition, but in a healthy, balanced way for a 10-year-old. She really needed that.”
  • “There is never a complaint about the school [from my daughter], I never hear a complaint about a teacher, I never hear a complaint about other students. I just don't hear it. She's very expressive. So, she would say that she would tell me.”
  • “[Three words to describe Delano Academy are] inviting, innovative, and exciting."
  • “It's really true, what’s incorporated into the very fiber of all of Delano, is … preparing them for global citizenship. They are being trained [at Delano Academy] to be life learners, and they are being helped to be to love learning ... that sets them up for success, it's prepping them for the very next steps, because if you don't love learning, you're not open to learning and you're not open to the world around you, this sets you up for a lot of hurdles.”
  • “[Delano teaches the students to be] responsible individually, to be responsible to the community of the school, and even the larger community... . It's not just a matter of don't do this, do that, it's a matter of questioning why. A large part of critical thinking at Delano is outstanding."
 

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Each school is different. Delano Academy & Delano High's Feature Review excerpts disclose its unique character. Based on discussions with the school's alumni, parents, students, and administrators, they reveal the school’s distinctive culture, community, and identity.

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More written reviews

(4.8)

Parent, Dayna Bruner (2020)

From the moment we walked into the halls at Delano Academy, there was a sense of comfort, excellence, and family. We were looking for a school that would not only challenge my son but nurture him. Del...

(5)

Parent, Raye Cai (2020)

We had attended another school that was very good at the beginning when it had a good principal who was an educator. As soon as she left, the owner turned the school into a business, even moved the sc...

(5)

Parent, ANA LIGIA MALAVAZI (2018)

Our son has become much happier and full of life after he started at Delano. It was the best decision we made as parents. He loves going to school, enjoys the activities, the academics, the Teachers a...
See all written reviews (4 total)
 

THE OUR KIDS REPORT: Delano Academy & Delano High

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