What Students Say!

Gabe Mills, Grade 10

Before I came to City School, I attended the gifted program at Queen Victoria P.S. I chose that program because I felt that it would better suit my strengths and needs, and provide an engaging learning experience. Around this time, I was having a lot of trouble with regular attendance. I left that school in Grade 8, and started the search for a high school.

City School was recommended by someone I know who had attended. It immediately stood out for me. There was a sense of community that I’d never seen in a school setting before; I could see myself fitting in. Any nervousness I felt on the first day quickly subsided. I saw people there who were like me, and with whom I would soon become close friends.

At City, I have been able to perform to the best of my ability. The combination of the supportive school culture, the small classes, and the focus on personalized learning contribute to the amazing environment that I am part of. I also really like the staff and feel like they really care about my success as a learner, and about me as a person. All of these factors combine to make the school what it is today. Without City School, I don’t know how I would be doing right now. I’m almost certain I would not be nearly as successful and happy with my learning experience as I am.


Maggie Alexander, Grade 10

I was at Orde Street Public School from Kindergarten to Grade 8. When it came time to pick a school for Grade 9, we looked around for a smaller school than my local high school, one that would feel more like Orde Street in size. I chose City School hoping to get more one-on-one attention. I also really like being beside the lake.

I feel like I’m succeeding at City both academically and socially. At my old school, I had issues with bullies, and now that I am here, I don’t. Last year was the best school year of my life. The class sizes were smaller and more one-on-one attention was better for my needs, especially since I have a learning disability. I get overwhelmed easily with the thought of too much homework and City School really is not making me overwhelmed, although I work hard. I am supported when I ask, and I can take a break if I need it. Last year, I had a work period and a tutor who is in Grade 12.

I don’t think I would be achieving the same level of success if I were at a big high school because the teachers have been really helpful in bringing up my confidence levels. It was really low before I came to City School. I guess I would say the main thing that the school has helped me with is my confidence issues.


Khamile Williams, Grade 11

Before attending City School, I was at Riverdale. I chose to go to Riverdale since it is my home school and only a 20-minute walk from where I live. Besides the school being near my home there was not much that Riverdale had to offer me. I chose to leave Riverdale because I was very stressed out. All I remember doing at Riverdale was waking up, going to school, going home to do a lot of homework, and then sleeping. I felt like I was treated like a robot while attending Riverdale.

When I transferred to City School I was nervous, but now I am so grateful that City was everything I had hoped and was told it was going to be. At Riverdale, I maintained an 84% average, but I did not understand anything I was taught because I never had enough time to process anything. Now that I am here, I have a 94% average and I actually enjoy and understand all my courses.

Also, I never had enough time to make friends at Riverdale, but now I’m surrounded by many amazing people who support and help me to make memories that I will always treasure. City School, with its smaller student population and caring teachers, has become my safe space where I can prepare my future, be myself and most important of all, enjoy my life.


Megan Tesch, Graduated June, 2019

 I was a student at City School for three years and I feel that I reached a high level of satisfaction and success from this school, both academically and personally. However, this did not always seem like a possibility for me. Before I came to City at the start of Grade Ten, I attended Humberside Collegiate Institute because it was my home school. It seemed like the easiest option for me. However, I had to leave because my generalized anxiety disorder was worsened by the environment of a “regular” high school. I found myself unable to attend classes because the sheer volume of students and chaos of the school was overwhelming. After struggling with this for months and months, wherein I wouldn’t attend school for long periods of time, I made the decision to come to City School for the following year.

This was one of the best decisions I ever made. The welcoming community made me feel safe and comfortable enough to express my struggles and ask for support, which I wasn’t able to do before. City, like many alternative schools, offers flexibility on assignments, which I appreciated, especially when I was in distress. The smaller class sizes and more personalized relations with teachers allowed me to further my understanding and learning within courses. Due to this support, I was able to reach my personal goals of graduating on time and getting into my first choice of university. I see this same appreciation for alternative schools in my peers, as the meaningful relationship between students and teachers allows for a wide array of students to be successful, no matter the academic, social or health related issues they face.