The academic weaknesses of TCS are very difficult to pinpoint, as the programs at TCS during my time there was nearly flawless. To understand the mindset of TCS academia, one must understand that a student is ASSUMED to soon be attending a great university in Canada, the U.S. or abroad. The question is not wether they will be admitted to a revered institution, but it is how well they will compete once they begin their first degree. The school prides itself greatly on the integrity of the academic offerings it has for the students. During my time there, TCS was one of the only high schools in Canada to have an electron microscope, it's own astronomy dome, world class music and arts centres, unparalleled sports facilities and countless other incredible academic tools that reflect its firm commitment to pushing the students to reach their full potential. Competition was friendly, yet fierce, as the culture was one of pushing each other's boundaries of development. One example of this was the intense house debates that took place periodically throughout the school year. Spirit and gusto saturated the historic hallways of TCS during these times. The winners of House Debates were celebrated and respected because of their wit and resourcefulness, demonstrating the school's respect for academic potential and the strive for greatness.
TCS has an ever-expanding array of academic programs that can challenge students based on their needs, abilities and performance. For lack of a better explanation, I was a very bright student in high school and academics came easily to me. My teachers recognized this, along with the fact that this brightness made me lazy at times, and they personally pushed me to take Advanced Placement courses, study languages and keep my options open by committing to studying both humanities and sciences throughout my career there. My teachers recognized my abilities and my weaknesses and supported me to tailor my course load accordingly. This attention taught me the importance of challenging myself to strive for something greater when I went to university, as there was no one there to hold my hand. One of the reasons that I went to TCS in the first place is that my parents wanted me to study in a place where it was 'cool' to be smart. They wanted me to be challenged by my colleagues both academically and philosophically, and to expand my worldview through diversity in the classroom. I would say that this goal was certainly achieved.
The work has never been too easy neither has it ever been just right! Surprisingly, that has been very beneficial to me academically. This is because the workload is so unpredictable that I can never be comfortable or think "I have everything under control". As a result, I am always kept on my toes and constantly "rebooting" myself. I definitely think what I am learning will be useful to me later in life. Apart from the obvious academic content needed for my future profession, I feel as though the various methods the teachers use to teach me will be very applicable to me in my studying and organizing methods later in life. In addition, the teachers constantly inform us, at the beginning of every topic, how it will be useful for us in the future especially in future professions. I think they even do that so the students who refuse to listen in class will not be able to say "it won't be useful to me later in life" as an excuse to not listen :)