Guelph, ON | Grades PS - 8 | Shortlist
Our daughter did not attend preschool or public daycare before coming to Resurrection Christian Academy. She is slow-to-warm and can find large groups overwhelming. Not only were the class sizes of RCA enticing, but their desire to get to know each child personally, has provided both our daughter and us as parents, a great deal of comfort!! Our daughter is eager to attend class, enjoying all aspects of learning even when she is frustrated as she has come to trust that her teachers and fellow classmates are available and safe. She also, even as a 6 year old, appreciates that students and teachers are to follow a Christian ethic as it has been assisting her in juxtaposing the Christian moral ethic with the world's subjective moral ethic.
As a leadership the school has met our expectations and beyond. The staff foster a positive school environment through kind words, creative activities, nurturing relationships between grades and addressing the value of leadership within the school setting and out in the community. Students are taught to value themselves and others, while learning the foundational truths of Christianity in order to prepare leaders for both the working world and the church. We receive ongoing, detailed communication with teachers and administration and feel confident approaching the leaders of the school with our praise and concerns.
Our daughter's teachers and the school administration have gone above and beyond in providing excellent learning opportunities, particularly during this past year as the school moved to online learning. We are so pleased by the school's implementation of a classical teaching approach, as it is teaching our daughter how to learn and think on her own. She is not only learning to read, write and much more, but is learning why letters sound the way they do, what science is and why it exists and how to relate mathematical problems to her daily life. The variety and creativity of the teachers both in-class and online have provided us with the assurance that our daughter is learning through both fun and effective activities and tasks. And lastly, and most importantly, we admire RCA for its commitment to teaching the foundations of the Christian theology. Our greatest desire is for our children is to come to know and love Christ and RCA does not shy away from making this a priority.
Being that our daughter is only in SK it is difficult to understand the academic pace at RCA. With that said, with a classical learning approach we feel as though RCA is cultivating an atmosphere of learning not just what the correct answers are, but why they are correct. With a variety of avenues to pursue such as, but not limited to music, languages, science and athletics, RCA is ensuring that all students find an opportunity to excel. In addition to this, we have noted that the school values the repetition of material in creative ways, the expansion on concepts at a reasonable pace and individual challenges to meet the level of learning that each student is at. One of the main reasons we chose RCA was for its commitment to teaching students as individuals rather than whole classes and are happy to see that taking place.
A small enrolment means for limited funds and as a result, limited opportunities for extracurricular activities. In addition to that COVID has created barriers to such activities. However, during the past year the school has sought out ways to engage students in fun and competition through theme days, virtual art fairs, virtual field trips, to name a few. RCA is working well with its resources and we are eager for more opportunities once COVID restrictions lift such as sports and music.
Pre-covid the students had many opportunities to engage with one another, build school spirit and support students in different grades. At this time those opportunities are limited, however our daughter's classmates arrive to online classes eager and excited to engage with one another and share what has been going on in their lives. The class has become an even tighter family during this time online through the facilitation of both her teacher and other leadership who have participated in classes. Both the size of the student body and commitment of staff appear to have created safe and secure attachments between students and staff and between students themselves. Students care about the needs of one another and parents support this by involving themselves and their families in the lives of their children's classmates.
As parents we have been welcomed as warmly as our daughter. Teachers and administration know us by name and make a point of remembering details about our relationship with our daughter. We are continuously included in fundraising, celebration and general school updates through a few different avenues (i.e. email, mail, online) and are provided opportunities to provide feedback face to face or through survey responses. As parents we are required to participate in school activities and provided multiple opportunities throughout the year to do so. Administration works hard to facilitate these opportunities while encouraging parents to take lead when able to do so. During COVID parental involvement has been limited, however parents have been encouraged to engage with their children's classes in safe and meaningful ways and for that we are grateful!
Our daughter's class has ensured safety for students while providing them with opportunities to branch out into the surrounding neighbourhood for walks and trips to the stores in the area. Each year students are also invited to participate in a variety of school trips to both fun and educational locations. Parents are invited to attend and build rapport with both staff and students. Even during COVID students have been able to engage in safe offsite activities.
Our daughter is thrilled to attend school each day! She is excited to see her classmates, of whom she all calls friends, her teachers who she feels safe and happy with and the school building, which doubles as her church. She associates the building and the people there as safe, fun, and trustworthy. When we first enrolled our daughter she was taught by a dear friend of ours and we questioned whether a new teacher could offer the same joy. We were pleasantly surprised when our daughter came home the next year telling us she loved her new teacher and wanted to make her a gift for being such a great teacher. The students are valued as individuals and staff draw on strengths to guide teaching and learning.