When Milo ‘31 started at York in Junior Kindergarten, his parents Alex MacDonald and David Stevenson loved the community so much that they arranged to have his older sister Adda ‘28 join him the following year when she began Grade 3. In addition to being gender inclusive, the family was really drawn to the school’s hands-on approach to learning and the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum.
“We love everything about the IB platform because it has the ability to take kids as deep as they want to go into a subject,” explains Alex. “Add to that a community that goes above and beyond to support one another, and we knew we had found the right place for our family.”
With Milo now in Grade 5 and Adda in Grade 8, Alex continues to enjoy her time as an active member of the York community, volunteering in a variety of roles including class parent and the York Parent Association’s co-chair for both the Junior and Middle Schools.
Recently, Alex and David also decided to support the school by making a gift to help create the Athletic Commons for Middle and Senior School students. Specifically, Alex designated their donation to help build the accessible changeroom and bathroom within the new space.
“I am a long-time advocate for inclusivity and accessibility. In my mind, you really cannot have one without the other,” says Alex, who has extensive volunteer experience at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital and multiple other children’s organizations.
The Athletic Commons will be completed this fall with support from donors like Alex and David. It boasts a bright, multi-purpose space with private changerooms in a safe, gender-inclusive setting that allows for greater community cohesion, student privacy and adult supervision.
Alex believes the Athletic Commons design is an important step forward for our school as it creates a welcoming environment. She believes it will attract even greater diversity by making York an option for even more students, including those who may use mobility aids or devices.
“This campaign really resonated with me and I was especially happy to support the creation of an accessible washroom and changeroom integrated into the space so that those who use it don’t feel excluded or separated from the main space,” says Alex. “The Athletic Commons is meaningful because it builds inclusion right into the school’s infrastructure.”
Canada's first gender-inclusive independent IB World School
The York School is a gender-inclusive JK to Grade 12 independent school located in the heart of Toronto. The York School was founded in 1965 and is the first school in Canada accredited to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) from junior kindergarten (JK) to university entrance. As an IB World School, The York School's motto is Experientia Docet or Experience Teaches.