The greatest gift parents could ever give their child is an education. Nelson Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Interestingly enough, parents today are still particular in deciding which school is best for their child and find ways to get them there. However, not all are privileged enough to be able to enrol in the schools they prefer.
There are two options in choosing a school, that is, whether a private or a public school. In Canada at present, it is not unusual for affluent Canadians to send their children to public schools. In fact, only 8% of the whole Canadian student population are in private schools.
Historically, private education in the Canadian Prairies was once denoted as a form of inequality, as less privileged children were unable to avail of this opportunity. In Alberta, private schools were restricted under provincial and municipal statutes, during the Social Credit (a populist conservative) period. This restriction continued well past the Social Credit government's term, and it was only in the late 1980s that Calgary private schools were able to operate.
Parents prefer to send their kids to Calgary private schools because of a higher quality education, better quality of physical infrastructure, finer culture, the established social status and prestige. However, this is not always the case, as some public schools also offer these or even more benefits.
Which Calgary private schools do you need to consider? A great place to start is to review the ranking of private schools in Calgary by the Fraser Institute, Canada's major public policy think tank. The Fraser Institute recently ranked all schools in Alberta based on the overall academic performance of students from all levels in the most recent five years, with 10 being the perfect overall rating.
The following entries are the best private schools in Calgary, according to the Fraser Institute:
Best Private Elementary Schools in Calgary
#1. Calgary French & International School - Rating: 9.7
This Calgary private school has emerged as one of the top French immersion schools in Alberta, attributing its success to its ability to respond to the different interests and needs of every student. Calgary French & International School adopts a strong global perspective and cultivates peace through teaching UNESCO values in every grade. This private school ensures high quality instruction in both Spanish and French languages by hiring the best teaching staff globally. It maintains a student to faculty/classroom ratio of 8:1 and strives to generate cross-cultural and first-hand experiences for every student using the UNESCO framework of values. Visit Calgary French & International School to learn more about what this top rated Calgary private school has to offer.
#2. Master's Academy & College - Rating: 9.6
Founded in 1997, Master's Academy is an innovative K-12 private school in Calgary which envisions exceeding beyond academic excellence. It equips students to be creators, innovators and leaders of change in the 21st century. It has earned international attention for its initiatives in transitioning education from the Industrial Age into the spectrum of the 21st century. Students consistently exceed standards of excellence in provincial standardized tests and this private school helps them prepare for the future. Visit Master's Academy & College to learn why this Calgary private school ranked so well.
#3. Clear Water Academy - Rating: 9.5
Established in 1995, Clear Water Academy's mission is to provide the best quality education and produce Integrally Formed Christian leaders, with conviction for truth and commitment to establish a society of Christian values which are not only taught, but also practiced. With the adoption of the Integral Formation® method of education, its students are trained with a balanced educational and spiritual foundation. This Calgary private school educates and guides students to become future leaders needed to change society. Visit Clear Water Academy to learn more about this Calgary Christian school.
#4. Webber Academy - Rating: 9.4
Incorporated in 1997, this Calgary private school is a non-profit institution recognized as a charitable organization. Its mission is to equip its students to thrive even beyond the university by enhancing an environment with a high sense of achievement, service and right behaviour. It prepares students to be responsible citizens in their own communities and to society as a whole. Located in southwest Calgary, overlooking the mountains and foothills, it is complete with a Kindercentre, main campus building, two huge gymnasiums, a Performing Arts Centre with a 500-seat theatre, modern High School Science Centre, a soccer field and a 400-meter running track. Visit Webber Academy to learn more about this private school in Calgary.
#5. River Valley School - Rating: 9.3
This private school in Calgary is uniquely established to discover what motivates and encourages students to bring out the best in themselves, academically and emotionally. River Valley School nurtures and develops the natural love for learning in every child, to instill in them the core of their person and identity. It considers every child as unique – not coming out from one box or fitting in same mold. This private school in Calgary develops not only the minds but also the character of its students. The teaching staff of this private school is warm, genuine and dedicated to the commitment of a quality education. Visit River Valley School to learn more about this private school in Calgary.
Best Private High Schools in Calgary
#1. Rundle College Senior High School – Rating: 10
Established in the summer of 1985, this private school in Calgary is committed to focus on its aim for excellence, a safe and caring environment and an enriched individualized learning for students. Rundle College Senior High School adopts a strong culture that enhances academic and personal achievement by creating an environment with high standards of care, supervision and respect. It provides educational opportunities to a wide cross-section of students by maintaining tuition fees at a competitive level, with no required membership fees, bonds or other major fund-raising obligations. Rundle College Senior High School helps students discover their full potential, challenges them to bring out their best, then celebrates with and awards them when they do. Visit Rundle College Senior High School to know more about this private school in Calgary and how it topped the rankings.
#1. Webber Academy – Rating: 10
This Calgary private school was incorporated in 1997, with the aim for students to thrive even beyond the university. Webber Academy is a non-profit institution now recognized as a charitable organization. It is located in southwest Calgary with a perfect setting overlooking the mountains and foothills. Facilities include a Kindercentre, main campus building, two huge gymnasiums, a Performing Arts Centre with a 500-seat theatre, modern High School Science Centre, a soccer field and a 400-meter running track. It creates an enhancing environment with a high sense of achievement, service and right behaviour, preparing students to be responsible citizens in their own communities and to society as a whole. Visit Webber Academy to know more about this top private school in Calgary.
#2. West Island College – Rating: 9.9
Originally established on the West Island of Montreal, this private preparatory school was founded by Terry D. Davies in 1974. It later formed West Island College of Ottawa in 1980 but shortly closed after its opening. Calgary West Island College has a 30 year proven record of success, leadership, innovation and growth. This Calgary private school offers its unique Class Afloat program, that provides an excellent educational experience to students while sailing around the world. They have sailed to more than 250 ports of call worldwide and more than 700,000 nautical miles, sailing a different route every year. Its motto is “Praestatantiam Consectemur” or “The Pursuit of Excellence”.
#3. Bearspaw Christian School – Rating: 8.9
This is a private Christian School that is non-denominational, and offers education from Junior Kindergarten up to Grade 12. With a fast growing student population, Bearspaw Christian School is able to offer one of the lowest tuition fee rates among the private schools in Calgary. This private school has extensive experience with more than 30 years in developing Christ-like character and academic excellence in every student. A top choice of Alberta's Christian families for 10 years running, Bearspaw Christian School's vision statement is, "Teaching Minds... Reaching Hearts... Transforming our World."
#4. Rundle Academy – Rating: 8.8
Established in 1995, Rundle Academy is a Calgary private school for students diagnosed with learning disabilities. This private school adopts a strong culture that enhances academic and personal achievement by creating an environment with high standards of care, supervision and respect. Nationally acclaimed as a leader in education for complex learning, Rundle Academy has grown into a premier program for students with learning disabilities. Rundle Academy's mission is to create an engaging, nurturing environment that offers enriched personalized education to equip students for an ever-changing world.
#5. Clear Water Academy – Rating: 8.7
This private school in Calgary was established in 1995, with a mission is to provide the best quality education and produce Integrally Formed Christian leaders, with conviction for truth and commitment to establish a society of Christian values which are not only taught, but also practiced. With the adoption of the Integral Formation® method of education, its students are trained with a balanced educational and spiritual foundation. This private school Calgary educates and molds students to become future leaders needed to change society. Visit Clear Water Academy to learn more about this private school in Calgary.
For a complete list of private schools in Calgary you may want to consider and the ranking of all Alberta schools, please refer to these links:
Ranking of Elementary Schools in Alberta
Ranking of High Schools in Alberta
Fraser Institute - Compare School Rankings.Org
Calgary French & International School
Master's Academy & College
Clear Water Academy
River Valley School
Rundle College Senior High School
West Island College
Bearspaw Christian School
Clear Water Academy
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