We know girls. We know how to spark their imaginations, cultivate their curiosity and raise their expectations of themselves. Our teachers have the flexibility to adapt how they teach to draw on girls’ strengths, capture their interest, and actively engage them in learning.
We are focused entirely on the education, development and well-being of girls, and we are uniquely positioned to provide them with opportunities and experiences they simply won’t have anywhere else.
It’s a lot more than small class sizes. Learning at SMS is a highly personalized experience.
It is simply not possible to get lost in the crowd here; our teachers know each girl and tailor learning experiences to individual interests and learning styles. Coursework is of value to each student, and worthy of her time and effort. This fosters genuine enthusiasm for learning and, as a result, greater academic success.
We recognize that learning occurs at different times and in different ways; our learning environment respects the diversity that exists amongst our students and supports the development of each girl. If a student is struggling, she will receive added support; if she is excelling, she will be provided with opportunities to stretch herself further. Our teachers consider the best approach for each student and address her learning needs together, through personalized learning plans. We challenge each girl to improve her own performance, exceed her own expectations, and realize her own potential.
Our small-scale learning environment offers big opportunities. Students don’t belong to just one club or team; they often contribute to our school community in several capacities. The Spring Production isn’t just for “drama kids,” and the athletics teams aren’t just for “jocks” – our students do all these things and develop an incredible variety of skills and experiences as a result.
Each year’s activities and events truly reflect the interests of our students; whether a girl’s passion is for team management or dramatic production, we make it possible. Every student will find opportunities to stretch herself, explore her interests, lead others, and try new things. Every girl will contribute her ideas, passions, and talents, and be able to see and feel her impact within our school.
Ask an SMS student what she loves about our School, and one of the first things she will tell you is that she feels comfortable here. She feels supported and encouraged by her teachers and by her peers.
A safe, nurturing and supportive learning environment is the very foundation for successful learning. It is an attribute often taken for granted, but one which is critical to ensuring the healthy development of each girl.
Our students are respected and respect each other. They can offer an answer or voice an opinion without fear of ridicule or shame. This environment gives students the courage to raise their hands, take academic risks, and try new things, even things they may not be good at. It allows them to develop the resiliency to learn from missteps and mistakes and to never give up on themselves.
Our school includes girls from age three to eighteen on one campus. This mixed-age community offers tremendous opportunities for mentorship and cross-grade activities. Our students develop friendships and connections that span ages and grade levels; they learn the importance of cooperation, respect, and collaboration; and they genuinely care for and trust one another. It is a unique environment that fosters a strong sense of belonging and a supportive community of peers.
Our academic program is supported by experiential programs that offer meaningful opportunities for students to apply their knowledge and see the value of what they learn in class. Learning this way is less fragmented and takes place authentically, through social, physical or academic exploration and trial and error. Students are able to see how subjects are interconnected and develop skills and attitudes that could never be taught in a classroom.
Our students gain a global perspective, both through their day-to-day classroom experience and through a variety of programs designed to explore and celebrate other cultures. They learn to be flexible and to adapt to different styles of working; they develop tolerance for differences, and friendships that span the globe; and they display a willingness to consider new perspectives and a degree of self-awareness that will be invaluable when they travel, study or work internationally in the future.
Who you are – your attitude, conduct, and spirit – is at least as important as what you know. We are committed not just to the academic development of each of our students, but also to her emotional and moral development. These are tools each girl needs to be willing to stretch and challenge herself, and to be open to new perspectives and experiences.
Opportunities for personal growth teach our girls to be strong citizens who know how to effect positive change and possess a desire to make a difference. Each girl will discover a lot about herself, her peers and the world in which she lives through the experiences she has here.
Vancouver Island and the City of Victoria contribute greatly to the extraordinary learning environment at SMS. Our school is nestled in a safe, quiet neighbourhood, but is only minutes from downtown Victoria. Learning experiences extend well beyond our campus; our community is safe, our surroundings are beautiful, recreational activities are possible year-round, and world-class cultural and natural attractions are at our doorstep.