Lynne Stewart says sending her children to a Christian school wasn’t something she and her husband expected, but since having her son switch schools believes it is “worth every penny.”
The decision to enrol her son at Holland Marsh District Christian School in Newmarket for senior kindergarten was a lengthy process, spurred by an unhappy experience at another school.
Stewart’s cousin had been telling her for years “how wonderful Christian education could be,” having sent her children to a Christian school in Pickering.
The family spent more than six months praying about the choice. Stewart spent time with the principal, made a couple visits to the school and connected with another Holland Marsh parent while considering the choice.
When she told the school she was going to enrol, Stewart says she “felt complete peace.”
“I have such peace about sending him to school every day and not just that — I feel so happy because he is happy,” she says, adding earlier this week when there was the possibility of a snow day her son was upset about missing a day at school.
“He’s just a different boy from last year, and my husband and I are so happy for him and we feel we’re doing the absolute best for him.”
Stewart notes the consistency in values between home and school, with the Biblical perspective woven in the curriculum, is a key element.
As a teacher herself, she adds she has been “blown away” by the compassionate, caring staff that is “unsurpassed.”
“I’ve never seen anything like it before, it’s really lovely, such a wonderful school atmosphere to be in,” she says.
She notes the school has excellent communication with its families. Parents are kept informed about what’s happening at the school and with the children. Stewart’s son comes home every day with a communication log with notes from his teacher. There is also a weekly newsletter sent to parents.
This high level of communication helps keep the parents more involved in the learning process, says Stewart.
She has been helping in the classroom as well as with fundraising and school trips, and says because she and her husband feel so appreciative of the school they want to be involved and give back.
The Stewarts plan to enrol their three-year-old son at the school next fall.
Though the financial expense of an independent school wasn’t planned, Stewart says she has no regrets.
“Both of us are so thrilled that he can have such a positive school experience,” she says.
She adds they consider the money an investment in the child.
“I highly recommend it, and I know in this economy it financially is quite a commitment but it’s worth every penny.”