From time to time readers email me with suggestions for the blog and newsletter. Since Torontoism is all about TORONTO, every suggestion is welcome. I’m especially happy when I can present successful businesses that contribute to everyday life in our great city.
A big part of a child’s every day life is school. Thankfully, Toronto boasts an abundance of great schools, offering everything your child needs to become a well-educated member of society. One of my readers, Matt Johnson, told me about his family business—a Toronto private school Junior Academy. Established in 1988, Junior Academy offers classes from Junior Kindergarten through to Grade 8.
I went there and my mother started the school, so it’s a family business and that is the feeling Junior Academy likes to give our students and parents. We are one big family.
said Matt Johnson.
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Situated at 2454 Bayview Ave in North York, this school was founded by Dianne Johnson with the goal to create a small school where children could learn in different styles and where teachers could devote their time to each pupil individually.
The small school setting at Junior Academy provides a unique learning environment in which all the students and teachers know one another.
The students develop social skills and self confidence as well as a sense of responsibility in the small school setting.
At this moment, approximately 90 students are attending Junior Academy. What’s unique about JA’s curriculum is that they also offer special services on site, such as Occupational Therapy, Speech Language Therapy or Social Skills Therapy.
The school also offers a number of extracurricular activities including skiing, skating, and soccer. If your kid isn’t really into sports, they also have after school programs such as chess and Lego.
For Harry Potter fans, here’s a fun fact. At Junior Academy they sort their students into four House Teams: Hammil, Phelan, McClelland and Clark. As Matt kindly explained to me, “the names of the houses reflect the ancestry of the founders of the school.”
An effort is made to balance the houses in terms of the age and grade of the students. Siblings are in the same house.
Each school has a House Captain, usually a student from Grade 7 or 8. And just like Hogwarts’ students, JA’s students receive house points too, for doing good deeds and promoting the friendly, family oriented culture of the school.
The tuition costs vary from $17,500 to $22,000 a year, but the school also offers half day programs for their Kindergarten students.
So how does one get into Junior Academy?
The first step in the enrollment process is a tour of the school and a meeting with the principal. The next step is for the scheduling of a day’s visit at the school for the student.
During the visit, the student participates in a “normal” day of school and is administered an assessment on a one-to-one basis. Following the student visit an offer of placement is made if appropriate.
Choosing the right education is a very important decision. If you’d like your child to learn in a friendly, family environment, Junior Academy seems like a good choice.