We chose Howlett for 4 reasons. (1) My daughter (then 7) loved the feel of the classroom: students were generally very well-behaved, self-driven and hard-working, but the environment was also warm and supportive, not competitive. (2) We were blown away by the quality of work we saw coming from the upper year students (grades 6-8), particularly their writing; (3) relative affordability compared to other private schools; (4) central location close to a subway. There is no question that the workload is intense, there is a lot of homework, and a lot is expected of the students. This has been a struggle for us at times. But we are continuously impressed by the teachers, who are passionate, dedicated, energetic, and uniquely able to support each individual student's needs academically and socially. They really work with each student to conquer their personal challenges or anxieties and reach their personal best. My daughter loves her teachers and her peers, and has learned an astonishing amount in the year and a half she has been there -- even if she gripes about the homework!