REVIEW OF North Star Academy BY Alum, Shan-Li Sauve
- Date of Review
March 19, 2019
Gr. 7 - 11
- University (major)
(5) Overall Experience
My overall experience at North Star Academy was incredibly life-altering. The environment of the school was the most accepting, welcoming and family oriented educational institution that I have ever experienced. In addition to the positive environment, I would consider the education that is provided by the institution as beyond exceptional and highly superior. As a result, I attribute the majority of my success and endeavours in my post-secondary studies to North Star Academy. A prospective student should expect nothing less than a welcoming, positive and strong academic environment. Both the administrative and staff members combined consider the academic and overall well-being of the student as a priority in order to ensure his/her success within North Star Academic as well as their upcoming future endeavours.
(5) School Leadership
Reflecting back upon my time at North Star Academy, I consider the school leadership and administration as exceptional. Overall, I believe that the attitude of both myself included as well as my peers inhabited positive attitudes towards the administration. Furthermore, I believe that there existed mutual respect and confidence in both the study body as well as the administration. This respect was shown on behalf of the administration by it's efficient, appropriate and fair responses to issues which fostered a positive school environment.
My overall experience regarding the teaching at North Star Academy was extraordinary. I would describe my satisfaction level with the quality of the instruction I received as beyond substantial. The positive and compassionate dynamic between the teachers and students fostered an ideal learning environment. Furthermore, the teachers were both passionate and knowledgeable in regards to their designated course subjects. In addition, they were able to communicate clearly and were able to provide constructive feedback on all assessments. In my experience, teachers have always created an interactive learning environment which did help myself and other students to develop a love for learning academically. Moreover, teachers would not only challenge, but encourage students to do their best. All of my teachers during my time at North Star Academy have had a positive impact on both my academic and personal development.
Overall, the school's academic program is excellent. One of NSA's strength in regards to their academics is the minimal classroom sizes. Being a student who is actively learning in a small classroom size enables the student to enhance his/her learning. This allows more group cohesion in terms of ensuring the understanding and success of the entire group. Furthermore, teachers are also able to address each students concern and/or lack of understanding individually as well as allocating enough appropriate time to meet the needs of the student. The school cultivated an extremely positive and stimulating learning atmosphere. There did not exist much competitiveness amongst the students, but rather a sense of encouragement and togetherness in the learning atmosphere. As mentioned previously, I attribute the majority of my academic success in my post-secondary studies due to the excellent academic program that is offered at North Star Academy.
North Star Academy always offered great extracurricular programs. In addition to the great quality of the programs, there also existed many varied options of the programs. The atmosphere surrounding the extracurricular activities was constantly positive and never competitive in a negative manner. There were always options to participate either for fun or more seriously. All of the programs provided meaningful development outside of the classroom. Therefore, overall, the school enabled and facilitated the development of well-rounded students.
The student body at North Star Academy was one of the greatest aspects at this educational institution. Considering the size of the student body, being fairly small, it allowed great group cohesion, togetherness, and solidarity. What stands out to me most about the general atmosphere of the student body is the optimism and welcoming spirit of each and every student who attends North Star Academy. The 'typical' student always seeks to encourage one another both academically and on a general level. He/she seeks to include everyone, whether it be in social gatherings or in a classroom setting. The student body gives a feel of family. The ethnic background of the students varied greatly, which was a wonderful thing for the diversity of this educational institution.
(5) School Life
The overall quality of the student life at North Star Academy was amazing. Personally, I more than loved attending school there. More specifically, the student body as well as the staff/administrative were the main reasons that contributed to my quality of life as a student. In my experience, both the student body as well as the staff always had a welcoming and warm spirit which enhanced the quality of student life for me and made my overall experience extremely pleasant. Furthermore, I believe that other students were equally as happy to be attending NSA. Although, of course, any student on a general level were stressed, but that is the norm for every student in today's time and age. Therefore, the positive environment of the school itself allowed me to experience an exceptional quality of student life.
Personally, the community at North Star Academy has always been very close and encouraged solidarity. I graduated 2 years ago, and I still see the majority of my graduating class quite often. Furthermore, myself included as well as other alumni's appear to frequently visit NSA as well as attending other school events that are held at North Star Academy, such as the variety show and spaghetti dinner. Moreover, the parents are always welcome to be involved in the life of the school and the administration always attends to the concerns of each and every parent appropriately. Majority of the parents also attend many of the school events held at NSA. Personally, I have kept up with the students from North Star Academy since I have left the school, I still visit the institution at times, and even attend the events that are held there.
(5) School Location
The location of North Star Academy is extremely convenient and is in a good neighbourhood. Given the fact that North Star Academy is located in Laval, it enables easy access to all students, teachers, and parents. Laval is a location that is both easy to drive to as well as navigating through using public transit services. Students would typically venture beyond the school grounds, if they were permitted to do so.
Overall, the process of applying for admission to North Star Academy was fairly simple and not a complex task. Furthermore, the administration that is at North Star Academy attends to each parents needs and/or concerns and clarifies each step necessary to complete an application. The administration prioritizes the parents concerns and allocates equal attention to every application. Personally, I did not find it stressful, especially given the fact that I was fairly young while applying to high school, and therefore it was mainly my parents who were responsible for my admission. Further, the admissions officers worked positively and professionally with me in order to make sure that the school was the right fit and answered all of my questions adequately. Therefore, my overall experience in regards to admissions was positive.