Reviews of Hudson College

Toronto, ON  |  Grades JK - 12  |  Shortlist

 

Review by: Jill Javet - Parent (Jul 08, 2021)

"I love that her teachers see even more potential and encourage her to explore that further."


Student Experience

My daughter has been at Hudson College since Grade 8 and is just finishing grade 10. She came from a larger public school and immediately felt comfortable and accepted at Hudson. She was shy at first in class but soon -- with the support of the teachers -- began to develop the courage to participate. Her biggest fear that first year was how she would possibly keep up with Hudson's challenging math curriculum. Before too long, she was excelling at math for the first time in her life. After three years at Hudson, I think our daughter really appreciates the supportive approach to teaching and the accessibility of the teachers and staff. Like any teen, she has ups and downs but is so far having a really positive experience both inside and outside of the classroom.


School Leadership

As a parent, I have been hugely impressed by the school leadership, both in the elementary school and the high school. Hudson is small enough that the staff -- from the front office to the Principal and everyone in between -- know every single child. They seem to have a keen awareness of any issues that may be bubbling up among the kids and how to handle them. The leadership at Hudson College are totally on top of things and do a great job of fostering a culture of positivity, while encouraging the kids to be their best in all they do.


Teaching

We have had an excellent experience with the teachers at Hudson. They take their work seriously and take a great deal of care to be available to any student for extra help or advice on projects. Many (if not all) of the teachers keep before-or-after-school hours during which students can consult with them. Since her first year, my daughter's teachers have all given nearly identical feedback that is very specific to her personality, along with concrete suggestions on how she can continue to develop and improve her skills. I have found that the teachers provide detailed assessments and are very helpful in advising how we as parents can support her work at home. While our daughter's academic performance and confidence have blossomed during her three years at Hudson, I love that her teachers see even more potential and encourage her to explore that further.


Academics

Hudson has a great track record of preparing students to move on to success in University and beyond. While the school is growing, the classes remain small and every student has access to the teacher support they need. Hudson's innovative three-semester system for high school students means that they can focus carefully on only two to three subjects at any time, while their days are structured with a built-in study period to reduce at-home work. My daughter has two years of high school left, and she is really starting to hone in on the areas of study that interest her for her future. She has been on several occasions to see the guidance counselor, who is always very accessible and helpful. I feel confident that, as University applications become a priority for my daughter, she will continue to have access to excellent support and academics at Hudson.


Extracurriculars

Hudson has a great range of extracurricular opportunities to appeal to all sorts of kids' interests -- from overnight camp at the beginning of the year; to sports teams all year long; ski trips, clubs that teach skills, raise funds or engage kids in social responsibility; and a nice mix of cultural activities like school plays and musical performances. There's something for everyone!


School Life

My daughter is definitely happy at Hudson College. It was absolutely the right decision for our family. I would highly recommend it. Given the extent to which the pandemic has impacted everyone, I wanted to compliment the team at Hudson for the way they have handled the necessary move to online instruction. While my daughter would MUCH prefer to be in school and in class, I know that she is learning. I know that she is delivering quality assignments. I know that she is being tested on her knowledge. I know that her teachers are present, encouraging her and giving her solid feedback. We are excited for her to get back to in-school life, but in the meantime, we are very grateful to have Hudson College.


Students

While the school is growing, Hudson feels like a smaller school. What began from the experience and vision of the Bavington Family continues to have a wonderful family feel, while being run entirely professionally by a well-qualified team of educators. One of the things I like about Hudson is the diverse student mix. My daughter has made wonderful friends and continues to develop her social skills as well as her academic skills. Generally speaking, the school doesn't feel "cliquey" rather it feels like a friendly, accessible place that is welcoming of everyone. Of course at every school, there are bound to be little issues that arise between and among students, but my sense is that the Hudson community is a strong and vibrant and positive one.


Community

I have always believed that an engaged parent community can really enhance a school. Hudson College definitely gives parents a lot of opportunities to support the school experience, whether it's volunteering on the school council, on a school trip or at a club activity. I have enjoyed being involved as a parent ambassador at both in-person and virtual open houses and finding ways to help with school events. I have a really fond memory of serving food at a Thanksgiving potluck lunch and seeing every single elementary school class come through the lineup, starting with the tiny JK kids all the way through to the Grade eights. I look forward to continuing to volunteer as opportunities arise over the last two years of our daughter's high school experience.


School Location

Hudson College is centrally located right on the St. Clair streetcar line and draws from many Toronto neighbourhoods. As the kids get older in high school, they can easily walk around the neighbourhood, go to a park to get a change of scenery or grab an ice cream cone or lunch. For students who want to eat lunch outside at school, my daughter suggests getting a couple of picnic tables!


Admissions

Our admissions process was seamless. We began hearing about Hudson College in our community when our daughter was in Grade 7 and were intrigued. We decided to attend a Saturday Open House at the school, thinking we might want to apply for Grade 9. After touring the school with a student ambassador and meeting many of the staff including the principal, we were even more encouraged. We decided we wanted our daughter to start Hudson in Grade 8 instead of Grade 9. As a next step, she was invited to spend a day in class to get a sense of the school experience. The teachers gave her some skill tests. She had a great day and the kids were rally friendly. Also that day I met with more of the staff. We were convinced. We completed the application materials and the rest is history. We have never looked back.




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