How we see Lakefield College School
The 50-page review of Lakefield College School is part of our series of in-depth accounts of Canada's leading private schools. It provides a unique and objective perspective on the school's academics, programs, culture, and community.Read our in-depth review
How Lakefield College School sees itself
"At LCS, our community and approach to educating teenagers are like no other. Students participate in transformative educational experiences designed to engage young leaders to care for and contribute to their communities and the earth. They embrace their individuality within a community made rich by its diversity of backgrounds and perspectives. Our waterfront campus—one of the largest among Canadian boarding schools—provides an optimal learning environment, inside and outdoors, enabling our students to thrive."
"At LCS, we believe spending time in nature and getting outdoors every day is so important, it is a core element of our strategic plan. Our programs are designed to help students deepen their connections with and responsibility to nature and the outdoors and support our belief that these go hand-in-hand with individual performance and wellbeing, and respect for others."
"Families choose LCS for its intentional focus on belonging, commitment to the outdoors, well-rounded education and community-minded focus. LCS has a local footprint and a global perspective that inspires students to understand and respect the world around them. The LCS experience instills greater confidence and independence, a deeper self-awareness, and understanding of the importance of living by a shared set of community values designed to positively impact the planet and those around them."
"LCS graduates received over $1.4M in scholarships and offers last year to top post-secondary institutions worldwide. Lakefield’s focus on community, wellbeing and connecting to nature and the outdoors leverages the many benefits of its stunning campus. On first glance, it may appear less rigorous, academically. Families may be surprised that a community focussed on wellbeing and joy is filled with students driven to learn and lead through a breadth of opportunities designed to inspire leaders."
"When families first join the LCS community, the sense of belonging created among students and staff, and the importance placed on providing a voice for students to share their perspective, may not be immediately obvious. A strong school culture is not something that can be artificially created. LCS is very intentional about building in time for daily, meaningful connections and opportunities to express perspectives. The benefits to new students and families quickly become noteworthy."
"Students are inspired by nature on 315 acres of waterfront campuses
Programs are grounded in principles of community-minded leadership, character education, and environmental sustainability
LCS alumni currently attend 6 of the top 10 colleges and universities in the world
1 in 3 students receive tuition assistance, with full-funding available based on need
LCS houses are among the smallest of CAIS boarding schools offering unique advantages for day and boarding students to foster connections"
Lakefield College School operates summer camps and programs. Click here to learn about Lakefield College School Summer Programs .
How people from the school’s community see Lakefield College School
Top-down influence on the school’s direction and tone
Most big schools provide your extroverted child with plenty of social opportunities and the ability to interact with different peer groups with a wide range of personalities, interests, values, etc. A larger student population and more extracurriculars—including activities like team sports, arts programs, and debate—will give them a broader scope of opportunities to participate in events that scratch their interpersonal itch. “This may also give them the opportunity to hone certain skills,” say Ann and Karen Wolff of Wolff Educational Services. “For instance, they might run for student council to develop leadership and public speaking skills and learn to be a voice for other students.”
At a boarding school, your extroverted child will likely enjoy seeking out and interacting with peer groups from different backgrounds, away from home. In fact, studying and living with other kids for an extended period of time, as many alumni tell us, provides the unique opportunity to form close relationships that can last well beyond the school years. Many boarding schools also have large student populations and more extracurriculars—including activities like student council, team sports, and arts programs—which will give your outgoing child a broader scope of opportunities to feed off the energy of others, and possibly even become a leader, in a dynamic environment.
Keep in mind, though, “Being an extrovert can be a catalyst for getting involved in lots of activities, which can sometimes be hard to manage,” says Joanne Foster, Toronto-based education consultant and author of ABCs of Raising Smarter Kids. “For instance, a particularly extroverted child may try to end up juggling too many people and activities. While they still may thrive at a boarding school, it helps to know your child and how much social interaction they can handle comfortably.”
Make sure any prospective school, no matter what size, provides the right social environment to help your child feel at home, make friends, and develop confidence. This is especially important at big schools, which are sometimes more socially overwhelming and challenging for an introvert to find their bearings in. Of course, “Because larger schools usually have a more diverse student population, introverted kids are more likely to find a small group of people like them, a peer group they can relate to and find acceptance from,” says Dona Matthews, Toronto-based education consultant and co-author (with Joanne Foster) of Beyond Intelligence.
Bigger schools often have a broader scope of extracurricular activities, which is another way to help your child meet the right group of friends. “This may also give them the opportunity to develop certain skills,” say Ann and Karen Wolff of Wolff Educational Services. “For instance, they might run for student council to develop leadership and public speaking skills and learn to be a voice for other students. Remember, though, each child is different—so what works for one may not work for another.”
At a boarding school, your introverted child will be more motivated (and virtually compelled) to seek out and interact with different peer groups. Away from home and in a new environment, they’re more likely to take the initiative to form close friendships, which can boost their independence and confidence, and help them develop critical social skills.
"Consider, though, whether your child will be comfortable and confident while living away from home, and while having to navigate the various, and sometimes unforeseen social-emotional experiences, alongside the academic challenges,” says Joanne Foster, education expert and author of ABCs of Raising Smarter Kids. Finally, ensure support systems are in place to promote their social and emotional development, and that your child is willing and prepared to take advantage of them. Your child will often need to advocate for themselves at a boarding school, and they’ll need confidence and perseverance to do so.
THE OUR KIDS REPORT: Lakefield College School
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