March Academy involves parents and communicates effectively. There is a very informative meeting at the beginning of the year and parents are given a very thorough handbook. Parents are encouraged to communicate with teachers through e-mail, phone calls or meetings if they wish. Teachers are always very accessible and willing to meet to discuss any issues. There is a parent council which is open to anyone who wishes. A staff member or two sits in on these meetings as well. This group helps with special events to make the school year fun and memorable for children and their families. For example, Chili Bingo - an Annual event where all families are welcome, Winter Break concert or show, again families are welcome ans join for treats in the hall afterwards.
At first I thought only wealthy people sent their kids to private school. When my child struggled in the regular school system. Despite the Herculean efforts to get him support and extra help, he continued to fall further and further behind. So we started asking around. We were referred to March from a friend of a friend. When I reached out to her she scheduled a special time to speak on the phone so we would have lots of time and not be interrupted. She explained that March had changed her son's life. She had so many positive things to say. Her son heard her on the phone and realized what she was talking about and started cuing her: "Did you tell her about Naturalist Wednesday? Did you tell her about TaeKwon Do? "Did you tell her that we have pizza day?" The community at March is made up of regular folk seeking the best education they can afford for their children. I have never felt out of place. Everyone is friendly and we all chat while we wait for the children at the end of the day.
March Academy has a parent council. Parents are invited to the remembrance day ceremony every year. Parents gather every December for the annual musical play where all kids in the school participate. All families are invited to the annual graduation, which is also the annual piano and choir recital. Kids are allowed to come in to the school one hour before classes start, at no extra cost, which allows parents for an early drop off to go to work. During that time kids play board games or read. Switching to the March Academy has been a life changing experience for our family. Our daughters are excited to attend school and passionate about learning. Most importantly, they are happy when they come home, and we have noticed how their self-esteem has boosted since their time at March Academy. March Academy is a safe place where kids are listened to and treated with respect and dignity. In return, we enjoy our family evenings more as we are dealing with less frustrations and bad moods.
The community of March Academy is wonderful. Parents are involved as much as they would like to be. The parents are always friendly and kind. We even had a breakfast club a few times throughout the year. Parents certainly play a role in the life of the school. Activities and events are always a time for parents to get involved. There is a parent council for decision making and often a collaboration of exciting ideas for the year ahead. It is purely based on volunteering ,and if parents are short on time there is no pressure. The year always starts out with a BBQ for new families and their children to meet the other children attending the school. It is a fantastic way to kick off the school year, even before it starts.
The parenting community at March Academy will support the school in any manner that is needed through volunteering, bring in interesting speakers for the children or attending the school functions. We have been blessed with great leadership in the parent group that have formal and informal gatherings. The students come from across the city of Ottawa and surrounding area. During our son's first year at the school we had moved to Ottawa partially to have him attend March Academy and the other parents helped us with a car pool due to some of the challenges we were facing to get our son to and from school in his first year. Parents are always open and willing to talk to the parents of prospective students to provide information for making the decision whether to enroll their child or children.