You know the TV commercial — the one where the parents are buying back-to-school supplies for their kids at the big box retailer, dancing and singing along with the famed holiday tune.

But back-to-school isn’t close to the most wonderful time of year for the vast majority of parents of students with learning disabilities. Earlier this year, Ontarians learned that students who need an Individualized Education Plan are, literally, in a queue that can last up to three years. We know that students with LDs benefit greatly from a highly personalized classroom setting and that these simply don’t exist in the public system.

Yet we’re also committed to the ideal that students shouldn’t be excluded from alternative, niche schools that perfectly match their set of ABILITIES because they can’t afford to attend.

Our school, The Academy, is a community school in every sense of the word. First, we’re housed in the beautiful Central Y, occupying a sizeable block of real estate from Bay to the west, Yonge to the East, Breadalbane to the north, and Grosvenor to the south. It doesn’t get more central than that – we are surrounded by public transportation and excellent parking lots.

As we are affiliated with the YMCA, we also share their policy of inclusion. We will not turn away a mission-appropriate family for financial reasons. Our pledge to you is that we will find a way to make it work financially for your child to attend The Academy if this is the right school for them.

There’s not much I can say here to top that. Our school provides everything that our students need. For students coming to The Academy from years at a school that simply didn’t fit, it IS the most wonderful time of the year.

It would be my pleasure to show you our school, our community. Please email me at Don.Adams@YMCAGTA.ORG then join me for some excellent coffee and conversation.

Don Adams, Head of School

Aug 24th, 2012 – Not the most wonderful time of the year