Upper Canada College is able to provide an exceptional academic experience for all students. UCC provides special programs for students that either find the work in a specific course too easy or too hard. I was placed in the enriched Math and French programs and I found that I enjoyed those subjects much more as a result. I have a handful of peers who participate in a course called GLS (general learning skills) as an alternative for French. Many students that are already familiar with a second language can find learning a third challenging and the school gives those students a course to learn about preparing for other subjects. I think that the work I was given was at a very reasonable level. At times it was challenging but I would never classify the work as too difficult. I have always been able to complete the work if I created a plan and executed that plan. Since UCC is an IB school I often found myself doing much more complex work compared to my friends from different schools. I thought this has been a great experience learning about concepts that were usually supposed to be taught 1-2 years later.
The academic program at UCC follows the International Baccalaureate program. This program takes the boys through several units of inquiry over the academic year as well as core mathematics, language, art, music and physical education. The IB program's strength is in teaching not only information but how to learn, how to ask questions, and what to do with that information. I feel the inquiry based program fosters skills in research and problem solving. As the boys get older there is more group learning, self directed research and presentation. The mathematics curriculum is strong, and the physical education program consists of one hour daily with a variety of units including team sports and individual activities. The french program in the primary years could be more engaging for the younger boys. Boys have music regularly, and start with instruments in grade 5 in preparation for choosing an instrument for band the following year. I believe all aspects of the college's academic program is strong, teaching strong learning skills early on, fostering independence early on, and particularly preparing the boys for success as they move through school.
The academic program at Upper Canada College follows IB, enriched with tradition value system, liberal arts, and physical education. The school's academic strengths and weaknesses? It's a full IB program from SK to grade 12. I was surprised, even astonished, when my son asked me lots of well thought questions after SK! He is thinking and discovering with his new learned inquiry skills! He was able to read lots of books by then. The school encourages everyone to be his best, to do his best, and to feel his best. School has a learning centre to help everyone to catch up to speed, to also provide advanced study for selected students. Teachers are available in the mornings and afternoons for questions and assistance. There are lots of early small classes, 8:00-8:30am, to help selected students to catch up or advance further.