Beamsville, ON | Grades 9 - 12 | Shortlist
The school is located in a very small town. There are a few places within walking distance that students go to regularly (and become nostalgic about after leaving). It is a quaint, safe town. But also a nice, big, charming campus. For international, residential students, it is also located closely enough to other destinations (Niagara Falls, Toronto, etc) that they often have opportunities to visit during their time here.
Great Lakes is located in Beamsville, Ontario, which is a small town. It is a 10 minute walk to "downtown" Beamsville, which includes some restaurants, grocery store, library, skating rink, etc. Residential students would often walk into town to get food after school, or to hang out at a restaurant. The town is small and safe. Some students find that it is boring because it is not part of a bigger city. They often take a bus load of students to St. Catharines (a nearby city) to go to the mall on weekends. The long weekend program also takes students on outings to other locations.
Like I said in my previous response about the location, the school has been long before most of the residents moved into the community. Even though the school is not fenced, my idea of being "without walls" still ensures the students know where their boundaries are. If the students are going out of the "school area", say to the nearby convenience store, they are required to sign out on a conspicuous board placed at the corridor of the hostel visible to everyone to see. There is also a time limit that a student must not exceed. Also, the school calendar includes provisions for long weekends which allow the students to spend time with their parents or Custodians. The Custodian arrangement or option gives the students the opportunity to interact with the community.
The school is located in Beamsville, which a very small community. Although it’s a small community, there are still some places that students can always go to beyond the school grounds. There are cafes, restaurants, supermarkets, and banks that students visit on the weekends. The school also has ‘food runs’ where they take students to the nearest fast food complex on the weekdays as well. The small size of the community also makes it a very safe neighborhood to live in.