REVIEW OF Queen Margaret's School BY parent, Mary Furneaux
- Date of Review
February 05, 2018
K - Gr. 6
(4.5) Student Experience
At Queen Margret's my child has grown to appreciate the diversity of the students. Being a preschool to grade 12 and boarding school, she has the opportunity to interact with all the grade levels and meet other students from around the world. It has given a larger world view from personal points of view. When asked if there was anything that disappoints her nothing came to mind as the opportunities for her to learn about things that are meaningful to her are extensive.
(4) School Leadership
Queen Margret's staff for the most part attentive and proactive from the Head of School, to the Principals, teachers, maintenance and administrative staff. I was amazed when I called about an accounting issue and the person not only knew my child's name, but her personality and strengths that says a lot about the attention my child is receiving. Communications from the school are frequent and if ever the need arises to address an issue involving my child the respond quickly and openly.
The teaching staff for the most part are very encouraging in getting students to go a step further then the lesson plans. My child has the benefit of a variety of instructors in different subjects, from different grade levels. When she has had the opportunity to learn from a teacher that is a home room teacher for a higher grade she is encouraged to embrace the lessons with enthusiasm and usually does. I do not feel all the teaching staff as been best suited for her needs, but this has been a minor issue easily resolved. I feel between the teaching staff and the parents there is a team effort to help every child succeed even when they are struggling
The academic program at Queen Margret's School is outstanding on all levels. As parents we were amazed by Christmas of her Kindergarten year she was reading by Christmas and at a higher level then we expected. Now that she is in the intermediate program she is making leaps and bounds in the areas of STEM and Fine Arts. The programs engage her and she often takes concepts and studies learned in class and digs deeper into the topics at home. She has the opportunity to work with students younger and older than herself and that will only make it better for her to work with a larger variety of people as an adult. The school academics program is a preparatory style that utilizes building blocks of learning from one level to another and also has a strong focus on service. If there was only one drawback I would say more in the area of other languages. While French is taught all the way through, Japanese is taught by a teacher from Japan every year, but only available to the primary and secondary students.
The opportunities are seemingly endless at Queen Margret's school as the extracurricular are so integrated into the programs for each grade level. Students compete with other schools in a variety of sports of their choosing as well as inter murals within the school itself on an almost daily basis. The Equestrian Program is hands on with students often going on to compete at extended levels. Students also showcase their artistic abilities on all levels, local, provincial and national. Around the city of Duncan you will often find their work on display. Musical students have the opportunity for band concerts and choir performances on and off campus throughout the year. There is a theater on campus and intermediate and senior students have the opportunity to do a full production as well as a variety of other performances throughout the year. Senior students are active in both service and issues of meaning to them on all levels as well and has been quite successful in assisting organizations with fundraising and grants to causes that have meaning to them. Queen Margret's School does not only rely on faculty in these areas, but will often bring in experts in these areas to teach and inspire.
As a parent I am thrilled at the size and composition of the student body. While only a few hundred students on campus all students interact on a daily basis. With students in residence all students benefit from a variety of cultures right down to the food services where cultural evenings and the menu reflects the differences between them in a positive way. There is a house system in place that gives a sense of belonging and team work as it comprises of students in every grade as well as faculty and support staff. Competition between students is celebrated in the positive ways and my child knows that there is always some one to guide her from above as she can help those coming behind her. The interaction between grades has given her confidence and to realize how her own actions can help others.
(4.5) School Life
Honestly, to send our child to Queen Margret's School is a stretch in a financial sense, however one we gladly take on. Our original intent was one year and upon seeing her blossom and thrive we find a way. She loves her school and while we have discussed her possibly changing she adamant that this is where she wishes to remain until graduation. A love of school and learning is at the core of what she has received. The class size gives her attention I do not believe she would receive elsewhere. I would not say the experience has been perfect, but when it has not been the school has taken note of our feedback and implemented changes to benefit the whole student body.
When your child attends Queen Marget's School you become part of a community that is world wide. Parents are activity encouraged to support student life at the school through various ways, from the PAC, the Board of Directors, the Alumni Association and other volunteer opportunities. As parent you are welcomed to bring your own unique expertise to the students through your career or something as simple as coming in to read for a class or discuss with them a unique experience of your own life. I have found the other parents supportive not only within the school environment, but outside of it in supporting your own careers, and talents. There is always someone there to assist you openly and willingly. I have met former students and parents and it is a unique bond we all share. I know no matter where we go, there will be someone from Queen Margret's there to help and support you as you will them.
(4) School Location
Queen Margret's School is located in Duncan BC and is a beautiful campus of peace within the city. The students are encouraged and active within the local community and students do regularly leave campus not only for educational reasons but to explore Vancouver Island and the many public activities available outside of the campus.