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Schooling

Page history last edited by Justin Spratt 11 years, 3 months ago

I began school in (non-Christian) Monterey Middle School in Victoria, BC.  As I recall, it was largely a daycare center.  Education was focused on getting a group of identically aged children to behave and share toys while their parents worked.  The actual learning I remember at this time was learning to read phonetically from my mother (an education professional) on the front steps of our home.

 

The following year, I transferred to Pacific Christian School (PCS) (a fairly large, long-standing Christian school, also on the island) where my mom worked.  School involved reading, writing, and a bizarre combination of "math," "science," and "history" ("math" involved playing with yellow cubes, "science" involved remembering words belonging to units of science, and "history" involved making miniature knights out of tinfoil).  The actual learning I remember was the reading and writing and the electrical circuitry and electromagnetism my grade three teacher, Mr. Katchmar, taught me during lunch break.  PCS was a well established school with K through 12 program.  My mother worked at PCS during this time.

 

Two and a half years later my family moved to Vancouver, and I attended Lions Gate Christian Academy (LGCA) for two and a half years.  LGCA was a fairly new, small school that operated out of a church basement and grew continually while I was there.  It has since become a highly ESL-focused school. Language arts (LA), math, science, French, and social studies classes were the substance of the school and were largely identical in the public schools.  "Language arts" (LA) is a subject that has woefully little to do with writing effectively and plenty to do with writing haiku poems (which I cannot remember how to do) and free verse poems.  It had replaced courses such as "English" and "grammar."  Social studies involved the "study" of native American society and history and how the white man destroyed everything.  There was also Bible class, which meant that we weren't in a public school.  It was run like a Sunday school class.  The most Scripture I ever dealt with was copying out Psalm 119 as a punishment for marching goosestep (like a Nazi) with friends at recess around a field in an attempt to parody the restrictive lunchtime rules (which restricted us to that awful sand field).

 

After that, I was homeschooled for a year by my mother and father.  Mom taught me subjects like English and grammar and Western history.  Dad taught me science and math (including principles of derivative calculus).

 

Our family then founded Gratia Classical School.  We hired a teacher, had building space, built curriculum, and added logic, Latin, and rhetoric to the English, grammar, and history that had been the substance of my homeschooling curriculum.  Interest in our school never picked up sufficiently, and I went to St. Thomas Acquinas high school (Roman Catholic complete with entrance exams) for a year and a half.  It was a "very academic school" with "high educational achievement," which basically meant that it filtered out students from low-income backgrounds.

 

Things didn’t work out (I'll tell you about that sometime), and I opted to do distance education (which is basically self-motivated homeschooling) through a non-Christian organization known as the Greater Vancouver Distance Education School (GVDES) for a year and a half, and then combined that with classes at the (non-Christian) Carson Graham Secondary School for grade 12.

 

I worked in the engineering field for a year following that before enrolling in Simon Fraser University (a state university) which I attended for two years before coming to Dordt College.

 

 

 


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I began school in (non-Christian) Monterey Middle School in Victoria, BC, and transferred to Pacific Christian Academy (a fairly large, long-standing Christian school, also on the island) the next year.  Two and a half years later my family moved to Vancouver and I attended Lions Gate Christian Academy for two and a half years.  I was homeschooled for a year before my family started our own school, Gratia Classical School (we hired a teacher, had building space, built curriculum, and learned logic and Latin).  Interest in our school never picked up, and I went to St. Thomas Acquinas high school (Roman Catholic) for a year and a half.  Things didn’t work out, and I opted to do distance education through a non-Christian organization known as Greater Vancouver Distance Education for a year and a half, and then combined that with classes at the (non-Christian) Carson Graham Secondary School for grade 12.  I worked in the engineering field for a year following that before enrolling in Simon Fraser University (a state university) which I attended for two years before coming to Dordt College.  Harrington asked which schools I observed not having pass fail an option in: other than college and university, all of them.  Oh, and we had electives, but these accounted for at most 5% of the last 17 years of my schooling.  I’m so glad to hear that the Christian and non-Christian schools here are not completely state schools yet.

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