REVIEW OF GlenOak Academy BY parent, Ali Aoun
- Date of Review
September 15, 2021
SK - SK
(5) Student Experience
My 6 yr old son loves his teachers. He also really enjoys and thrives in the small class size with the special attention he receives from everyone. He has made friends with not just the students in his class, but most of the students in the school. He hated going to his previous schools, but this one from day 1, he didn't cry a single time. My son loves the intimate setting of the school too. The location is surrounded by amazing trails and parks. Furthermore, the focus on the child, over a strict academic regime is something that I feel allows my son to really excel in areas that he enjoys learning about. In terms of disappointments, honestly I have yet to come across one.
(5) School Leadership
All the admin staff and principal/owner at Glenoak make you feel like you have known them forever. They are extremely caring, understanding, friendly, yet professional. Whatever minor admin issues we had, were instantly taken care of. They use software, such as Edsby and google classroom, really well to keep us up to date with all school matters. During Covid they did an exceptional job to convert to and manage online schooling, and made the process as simple as possible.
My son's teacher, I cannot praise her enough. My son literally asks whether Ms. Elaine is at school as soon as we get close to the school. He is always so excited to see her. Not only his main teacher, but all other staff at GlenOak are a joy to meet. They seem to have the perfect balance between being their student's friend, mentor, and teacher, that all students seem to enjoy and respect their presence. The way the teachers handle my son if he has a meltdown is amazing. Calm, yet decisive. The teachers are in constant touch with us regarding our son's progress, and give us great guidance on what to work on at home. They also capture beautiful moments and share the pictures/videos with us making us feel like we are a part of his school life.
GlenOak follows the Peel curriculum, so they adequately prepare the students for their next steps. What I really appreciated, and found somewhat unique at GlenOak, is the importance on the strengths of the individual child. They motivate the students to excel in whatever the student finds exciting and interesting. Having a small class size really allows this individualized attention. This also allows the teacher to spend extra time with each student and work on their unique weaknesses. Something is would be impossible in a class size of 18 or so. My goal has always been to let my son have fun in school and learn more through experiences, than just books. I believe GlenOak does a good job in maintaining that balance, where learning is done through life experiences as equally as it is done via books.
Extracurricular opportunities are plenty for students/parents who are interested. Currently, due to COVID, they are obviously limited, but hopefully when things get back to normal, they offer things like basketball, chess club, book reading, etc. I am not in the position to provide a complete review on this matter, as my son's attendance has mainly been during COVID so far, but I'm sure he will have enough activities to participate in once COVID is behind us.
The best thing about this school is the small student body. But due to that, they have the greatest spirit and atmosphere. Due to their blended programs, kids of different age groups learn and play together at times. This results in younger children learning from older students, and older students learning about caring for younger people in society. Its not uncommon for grade 8 students to say hello and good bye to my 6 year year old when I drop or pick him up from school. Everyone seems to be friends with everyone else. It's really a unique atmosphere that I haven't witnessed at other schools. Truly one big family who learn together, and play together, and care for each other as and when needed. I have yet to come across any disciplinary issues at GlenOak.
(5) School Life
My son loves GlenOak. He loves it because it's like a second family to him. The teachers are very flexible and accommodate the needs of each individual student. My son goes on walks around the neighbourhood everyday with his peers and teachers. A lot of the learning also takes place in the big green spaces that are available to GlenOak. The school does a good job by offering after school activities, and clubs. There are enough options to interest everyone. Day trips, virtual trips, on site events all are part of GlenOak. They really make the most of the tight knit community that is involved with GlenOak. Honestly student life at GlenOak is unique where kids of different ages also get opportunities to learn together and from each other.
As this school is quite small in size, it has a very homely feel in a great way. Many students are children of the school staff. As a parent there are lots of opportunities to participate and get involved. Whether as a volunteer on events, or as a staff member. The principal is one of the sweetest people I know, who is a great person to work with. I approached the school with a business idea to start at GlenOak, and within a few weeks we were live. The staff was extremely welcoming and helped out wherever. The parents also gave great feedback as well. Although I do not know many parents personally, but everyone always is very courteous and warm to each other during pick ups and drop offs.
(5) School Location
The school is located in a building that has a lot of green space surrounding it. So students are always taking advantage of that and learn outside quite a bit. There are also great trails and parks close by that students go on walks to regularly. The area is overall quiet, and safe. The neighbourhood has a lot of schools so lots of kids around.