Central to The York School’s approach to education is an appreciation for the importance of supporting the whole child. Academic success is intrinsically tied to social and emotional wellness. Through our robust homeroom and advisor programme in all three divisions, students have the opportunity to nurture meaningful relationships with teachers and peers and explicitly address social/emotional learning and character building. Our student wellness team is available to work with individual students, parents and faculty to ensure that our students’ unique psychosocial needs are addressed.
All York School students are given the means to achieve to their personal best. Individual attention, small class sizes and our focus on the whole child help us to identify exceptional children and offer them the support they need to excel.
In partnership with parents, The York School offers several services including one-on-one and/or small group remediation and/or extension, individual or small-group instruction, curriculum accommodations, short-term and long-term goal setting.
Junior School Counsellor
Amy Faba is the Junior School Counsellor who works with teachers, students and parents on social and emotional well-being within the Junior School. Along with classroom teachers, Amy creates and delivers a curriculum for social and emotional wellness from JK to Grade 5.
Kindness - Our Essential Agreement
There is a school-wide initiative on finding a culture of kindness in our school community and an essential agreement that guides the teachers in its implementation. The essential agreement for behavioural expectations includes using a common language of ‘friendship moves’ (helping words or actions) versus ‘friendship blocks’ (hurtful words or actions). Teachers have an “Appreciation box’ in the classroom and find time on a weekly basis to share what students have written about their fellow classmates, about their families, about the country we live in and so on.
Our objective is to foster a heightened sense of appreciation and gratitude in our community. We focus attention on developing good manners in all aspects of school life – in the hallways, stairwells, cafeteria, playground and in interactions with adults and peers. Teachers help students see kindness growing in their classroom by using a visual marker such as a paper clip chain or a jar of tokens to which teachers add a clip or a token when they notice students’ friendship moves or ‘green light’ behaviours.
Throughout the year, students and teachers practice Mindfulness techniques in the classroom. In a fast paced age of technology and busy schedules, helping students more closely attend to themselves and the things around them can contribute to their awareness of both essential internal and external messages. Mindfulness sessions concentrate on movement, facial expressions, feelings of gratitude, kindness and friendship. The ultimate goal is to promote a classroom environment and community which fosters empathy and understanding.