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PACE Academy in Richmond Hill

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[OP]
Newbie
Jul 22, 2007
55 posts
Toronto

PACE Academy in Richmond Hill

Does anyone have any experience with this school?

Is it really worth it, or just wait for the public school program to start?
49 replies
Member
Apr 5, 2004
348 posts
91 upvotes
Do they only accept gifted children?
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 22, 2007
55 posts
Toronto
jkaibo wrote:
Feb 25th, 2011 11:06 am
Do they only accept gifted children?

Yes, I believe so.

But how does it compare to a public gifted school? I know PACE is available starting Grade 1, but public starts in Grade 4 (at least in York Region, that is the case).

Assuming your child can get in, are the extra 3 years really worth it, or is it better to do something else like French Immersion?
Deal Fanatic
Jan 18, 2004
5960 posts
863 upvotes
We're looking into PACE right now.
Reading various threads for gifted children, it seems PACE would be good because they will get their needs met better.
Plus they would excel at their strengths with kids that are similar is ability.
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 22, 2007
55 posts
Toronto
canadiankorean wrote:
Feb 28th, 2011 3:05 pm
We're looking into PACE right now.
Reading various threads for gifted children, it seems PACE would be good because they will get their needs met better.
Plus they would excel at their strengths with kids that are similar is ability.

Well, that is the thing - it seems like it is good based on what they tell you the program is about. But the real question is whether they actually follow through on what they say they will do. We've heard the Montessori drill before, how the program is designed so that each child learns at their own level, etc... But in reality, if your child is not just one or two levels higher, but more than that, most Montessori classrooms are simply not equipped to deal with that. One or two teachers simply cannot devote that much time to a single child. Especially in a private school setting, there are no extra resources to deal with this. I am wondering if PACE is exactly the same way - they will tell you anything to get you in the door, but once you have paid, you'll be reluctant to leave because of the significant penalties imposed.

The hope is that a gifted program, where the teachers are used to dealing with children at different levels (remember not all gifted children are gifted in the same area), would be a better environment. But tuition is pretty expensive, and if you aren't getting full value for your dollar, does it really make sense?

I'd be willing to pay if it definitely had value, but I'm a true RFD'r - its gotta be a good deal in the first place.
Deal Fanatic
Jan 18, 2004
5960 posts
863 upvotes
saucynuggets wrote:
Feb 28th, 2011 7:15 pm
Well, that is the thing - it seems like it is good based on what they tell you the program is about. But the real question is whether they actually follow through on what they say they will do. We've heard the Montessori drill before, how the program is designed so that each child learns at their own level, etc... But in reality, if your child is not just one or two levels higher, but more than that, most Montessori classrooms are simply not equipped to deal with that. One or two teachers simply cannot devote that much time to a single child. Especially in a private school setting, there are no extra resources to deal with this. I am wondering if PACE is exactly the same way - they will tell you anything to get you in the door, but once you have paid, you'll be reluctant to leave because of the significant penalties imposed.

The hope is that a gifted program, where the teachers are used to dealing with children at different levels (remember not all gifted children are gifted in the same area), would be a better environment. But tuition is pretty expensive, and if you aren't getting full value for your dollar, does it really make sense?

I'd be willing to pay if it definitely had value, but I'm a true RFD'r - its gotta be a good deal in the first place.

Some people on a gifted children board thread say that the teachers are great but the facilities are lacking. It's an old building apparently.
However the tuition is a lot lower than other private schools.

One post
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What I like:
- The curriculum - it is balanced and challenging
- The diversity of student population
- Staff -

Areas to be improve on:
- Facilities and grounds
- I wish they had more gym time (e.g. intramurals at lunch, more gym classes in a week)
- There is no lunch program (although there are lunch days - pizza and stuff)
- There is no art program- it is rolled into other subjects
[OP]
Newbie
Jul 22, 2007
55 posts
Toronto
canadiankorean wrote:
Mar 1st, 2011 8:56 am
Some people on a gifted children board thread say that the teachers are great but the facilities are lacking. It's an old building apparently.
However the tuition is a lot lower than other private schools.
May I ask what board you visited? I'd be interested in checking it out.

I think I am less concerned with the facilities and more concerned about the actual staff and classmates. Gifted kids tends to 'stick out' a little more, so it would be nice to find classmates that would have more in common because I think that would be very beneficial for social development.
Newbie
Oct 5, 2006
41 posts
2 upvotes
Friend of mind has 2 sons two years apart.

They start off from a good Montessori school, then both sons continue at the same private school until grade 3 and grade 5.

Then both sons switched to Public School gifted program for grade 4 and grade 6. My friend said they totally wasted the year at public school.

Got switch to PACE to continue... Younger son for grade 5 to grade 8, got accepted by Crescent School from grade 9. Older son didn't get accept and continue at PACE.

Both got into good university program that they like with scholarship.

Now that when I ask the kids how they feel about PACE. They both think PACE is a trust school for academy. Every student only focus on books. They are not as active as public school friends. They also have less friends there then public school.

Hope this help!
Member
Apr 5, 2004
348 posts
91 upvotes
Would you mind sharing which Montessori school they went to?
Mrs wrote:
Mar 30th, 2011 9:22 pm
Friend of mind has 2 sons two years apart.

They start off from a good Montessori school, then both sons continue at the same private school until grade 3 and grade 5.

Then both sons switched to Public School gifted program for grade 4 and grade 6. My friend said they totally wasted the year at public school.

Got switch to PACE to continue... Younger son for grade 5 to grade 8, got accepted by Crescent School from grade 9. Older son didn't get accept and continue at PACE.

Both got into good university program that they like with scholarship.

Now that when I ask the kids how they feel about PACE. They both think PACE is a trust school for academy. Every student only focus on books. They are not as active as public school friends. They also have less friends there then public school.

Hope this help!
Newbie
Oct 5, 2006
41 posts
2 upvotes
jkaibo wrote:
Mar 31st, 2011 4:47 pm
Would you mind sharing which Montessori school they went to?

Wishing Well Montessori School at Woodbine & south of Hwy 7
Newbie
Aug 6, 2011
1 posts
1 upvote
RICHMOND HILL
Tuition is lower at Academy for Gifted PACE compared to other private schools in the area, but that's because they can't afford to charge a higher rate due to their inadequate and decaying facilities.

Pros:
-Some teachers and staff are great with the kids
-Most of the subject matter per grade is engaging and at times challenging
-Interesting extra-curricular activities
-Homework period built into the day to day schedule
-Relatively smaller class size for Grade 1-3 (Max 20 students: 1 teacher)


Cons:
-Not all the teachers have an education degree.
-The French teacher for lower and middle grades is not native nor fluent French speaker, speaks more in English in class than French!
-Facilities are inadequate or in badly need of repair or renovation (cleaning and proper ventilation included!)
-loose sheets of B&W paper are given to the students instead of a bound compilation of these materials
There are other items I want to add, but prefer not to disclose.

In conclusion, we are happy that we have withdrawn our daughter from this school. It was an OK school, not an exceptional one. It is somewhat a school for gifted, but there are better ones.
Newbie
Jun 1, 2008
52 posts
Toronto
rosaj89 wrote:
Aug 7th, 2011 2:53 pm
Tuition is lower at Academy for Gifted PACE compared to other private schools in the area, but that's because they can't afford to charge a higher rate due to their inadequate and decaying facilities.

Pros:
-Some teachers and staff are great with the kids
-Most of the subject matter per grade is engaging and at times challenging
-Interesting extra-curricular activities
-Homework period built into the day to day schedule
-Relatively smaller class size for Grade 1-3 (Max 20 students: 1 teacher)


Cons:
-Not all the teachers have an education degree.
-The French teacher for lower and middle grades is not native nor fluent French speaker, speaks more in English in class than French!
-Facilities are inadequate or in badly need of repair or renovation (cleaning and proper ventilation included!)
-loose sheets of B&W paper are given to the students instead of a bound compilation of these materials
There are other items I want to add, but prefer not to disclose.

In conclusion, we are happy that we have withdrawn our daughter from this school. It was an OK school, not an exceptional one. It is somewhat a school for gifted, but there are better ones.

So which school is daughter going to now?
Newbie
May 11, 2012
1 posts
WOODBRIDGE
jkaibo wrote:
Apr 2nd, 2012 8:44 pm
I called PACE today about admission and a tour of the school. The lady (receptionist?) said we already have a waiting list and won't give tours anymore. She said if you are still interested, get your child tested by a Psychologist and get on the waiting list. Should I bother to be on the waiting list if they don't even care to tell you about their school? Unfortunately, there are very few private gifted schools in York Region. The first impression I got from PACE is a bit disappointed (of course not because of the waiting list).

Any more feedback about this school from other parents? Thanks!
First you need to determined if your child is gifted, I guess its called bother, then apply to school which best fit. There is no schools in York Region that offer full time gifted program, this is the ONLY school, well public have gifted program but its a joke. PACE program is very good kids study 1 grade ahead. The longer you wait the bigger gap in knowledge, unless your child transferring from similar program like in our case.
My son was accepted in PACE into 9 grade, we moved from US, he did entrance exams to pass 9 grade credits, hence in grade 9 in PACE = grade 10 in public school as well as other private schools. I highly recommended it, despite of facility. Hope this helps.
Here is link to York Region: http://www.ontariogifted.org/yrdsb.htm
Member
Apr 5, 2004
348 posts
91 upvotes
Why public gifted program is a joke?

I thought PACE is more than 1 yr ahead. How (bad) is the facility? Someone in this thread shared the same opinion as well.

I have been to Richmond Hill Montessori School Open House (Elementary). The grade 1s are using grade 3 textbooks and grade 2s are using grade 4 books. Any parents have kids studying (or studied) at RHMS?
LanaDanik wrote:
May 12th, 2012 11:53 pm
First you need to determined if your child is gifted, I guess its called bother, then apply to school which best fit. There is no schools in York Region that offer full time gifted program, this is the ONLY school, well public have gifted program but its a joke. PACE program is very good kids study 1 grade ahead. The longer you wait the bigger gap in knowledge, unless your child transferring from similar program like in our case.
My son was accepted in PACE into 9 grade, we moved from US, he did entrance exams to pass 9 grade credits, hence in grade 9 in PACE = grade 10 in public school as well as other private schools. I highly recommended it, despite of facility. Hope this helps.
Here is link to York Region: http://www.ontariogifted.org/yrdsb.htm

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