Read on to learn how to send your child to Claren Academy. We are currently accepting applications for grades K-6.
Why Claren Academy?
Claren Academy is a unique Vancouver school, focused on preparing its students for the future as it will be when they graduate from the 12th grade around the year 2030.
Our high student-to-teacher ratios, cutting edge resources, and emphasis on competence and creativity will give our students the tools they need to respond to the challenges that await them in the future.
Complete our Inquiry Form, below.
We will contact you within 2 business days with an application form, and instructions to submit supporting documents, and the $100 application fee.
Interview & Evaluation
Visit us for your family interview and play-based evaluation.
Please email [email protected] for an application form.
What is your COVID-19 return to school plan?
Claren Academy welcomed our students back to full time in-person learning on September 8th 2020. Our small size and our pro-active family community have worked in our favour to keep us safe and healthy at school. Our full student body and teaching staff fit under the 60 person cohort limit. Within that cohort we operate in smaller groups as much as possible, and use PPE to protect our students and staff when our ability-based groupings, inquiry projects, and other enrichment requires mixing across grades. We have gone above and beyond the safety requirements of the Ministry of Education in order to deliver the enrichment and individualization that make Claren Academy exceptional. For example, all Claren students and staff wear masks when indoors, we have moveable clear barriers, and our ventilation has been upgraded.
To learn more about our safety protocols, please view our Stage 2 Restart Plan. The best way to see our plan is to let our students show you! Watch our restart videos for Titan (grades four and five), Europa (grades two and three) and Luna (kindergarten and grade one).
What grades are you offering for September 2021?
We are welcoming applications for kindergarten to grade six, meaning children born between 2010 and 2016. We will continue to add a grade each year, up to grade twelve. We are excited about the potential of our Middle Years program as our school grows with our oldest students.
Do you have an application deadline?
Claren Academy accepts applications at all times, depending on space in each grade. Interviews and play evaluations are held throughout the year, and offers of admission are made shortly after those assessments. We consider space availability in each grade, and we adhere to the admissions criteria listed below. If a particular grade is full, the applicant may be eligible for a position on our waitlist.
Do you require an entrance bond or new student fee?
Many of Vancouver’s independent schools require a large bond (up to $35,000) as well as assorted “new student fees.” Claren Academy has been well capitalized by its founders and as such does not require you to pay new student fees or bonds.
What are your tuition fees?
Claren Academy is operated by the non-profit charity Claren Academy Society. We believe that all students deserve a world class education, and we are working hard to keep our tuition as low as possible while still adequately funding the top notch resources, facilities, and staff that our school requires to fulfill its mandate. Thanks to the generosity of our community and hard work of our Claren Academy Foundation, we also have limited bursary support available. Please inquire at the time of your application.
The fee for our 2021/2022 school year is $16,580. This fee covers tuition, field trips, tech supplies, art supplies, and music supplies.
International students, and students not eligible for the provincial grant pay a tuition of $22,080.
Is there a discount for siblings?
Yes. Younger siblings will receive a 5% discount off of the year’s tuition.
What do your families say about the school?
We work hard to ensure that all of our families are excited about the education that their children receive at our school. Testimonials like the one below show that we are succeeding, and we are proud to share even more parent feedback with you on our testimonials page.
“Since starting at Claren we have seen a shift in our daughter, who is energized and excited to go to school each day. She comes home bursting with things to tell us and we have been blown away by the breadth of exposure and opportunity she has received. The arts, music and math programming as well as the continual activity out of school and in the community have been a particular highlight. The integration of technology into education at Claren has been seamless and mirrors real-life application. We could not be more thrilled with our decision to enroll at Claren Academy.” – Claren Parent
What is your approach to teaching?
At Claren Academy we employ research-based, proven teaching strategies such as inquiry and project-based learning that are shown to improve confidence, creativity, and autonomy. Our staff of dedicated, passionate teachers focus on individualized learning to help each student achieve their best work, and be excited about the results. For the core foundational subjects of literacy and math we used a levelled program that fits students into their just-right group, regardless of grade. That allows students to have more support as needed, and to advance with mastery. To learn more, please contact us, or visit our About page.
Where is the school located?
Claren Academy has a beautiful campus in downtown Vancouver’s Yaletown district. We are three blocks from the Yaletown-Roundhouse Skytrain station, a short walk to great parks and recreation centres, and right in the midst of many of Vancouver’s technology companies. Take a virtual tour of our current campus!
For the 2021 school year we will open in our beautiful, newly renovated campus at 1085 Homer Street with twice the space and room to grow.
What field trips do you take?
We venture out of our school and into the “classroom” of the surrounding city multiple times each month. Our students have learned to use transit, navigate Vancouver, and appreciate public space, furthering our curriculum and learning along the way. For a list of the field trips we have taken, from skating to snowshoeing, the Pan Pacific kitchens to the Microsoft Garage, please visit our “About” page.
How much time do your students spend on screens?
To say that we are a “technology” school is a misnomer. Our students do use the latest tools, including iPads, 3D printers, and electronic art and music materials, but they also use paper and pencils, clay and glue, and all kinds of other resources to build, create, and explore. The goal in our use of technology is to create rather than simply consume, and discover new ways to solve problems, foster curiosity, and most importantly, connect with others. When our students use our iPad and Chromebooks they use them mindfully. Examples include completing worksheets electronically to save paper, playing cooperative quiz games, photo documenting their own work, or coding in Scratch and Scratch Jr. We focus on quality of screen time, rather than quantity.
What is your school calendar?
Claren Academy follows the calendar used by most independent schools in Vancouver, allowing for a 3 week winter holiday and a 2 week spring break. Our school day runs from 8:45am to 3:15pm, and families have the option to drop their children off as early as 8:30am.
Do you have uniforms?
Yes. Our uniforms are provided by Top Marks Uniforms. The cost will be around $300, with some variation depending on the quantities and options you select.
How do you provide physical education?
We are well aware that children need to move! Our classrooms are spacious, and we engage in daily physical education through group play, yoga, dance, and other activities. We take advantage of our enviable location in Yaletown by enjoying walks to parks, rec centres, and other cultural landmarks. Our new campus at 1085 Homer was formerly a gym, so we are fortunate enough to have a whole exercise room with a proper gym floor and space to really move and sweat. Our students also partake in additional external activities such as swimming, skating, and gymnastics.
Do you teach the arts?
Although we may seem to be focused heavily on science and technology, we feel strongly that creative fields will provide great careers for many children of this generation. Some of our students may want to play the piano, while others might want to take it apart to see how it works, and both of these inclinations are celebrated. We teach fine arts such as music, visual arts, drama, and dance.
Do you teach a second language?
Our second language offering is Mandarin. Mandarin instruction begins in grade five.
Do you accept international students?
If you are a family who normally lives outside of Canada, and you feel that Claren Academy would be a good fit for your child, please reach out to us. We recognize that students from diverse backgrounds can benefit the whole community. Please note: due to our size and focus, we do not have an English language learner program, or a homestay program.
What is your admissions process?
Claren Academy is offering spaces for children entering kindergarten to grade six for the 2021/2022 school year. (Only children born in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 will be eligible for September 2021.) We will add one grade each subsequent year, up to grade twelve.
- Complete our Inquiry Form, above.
- We will contact you within two business days with an application form, and instructions to submit supporting documents and the $100 application fee.
- Visit us for a family interview and play-based evaluation.
Successful applicants will then be asked for a deposit to secure enrolment.
What are you looking for in your admissions?
Admission to grades K-6 at Claren Academy is based on:
- The candidate’s social, emotional, and developmental readiness
- The family’s interview, with a focus on their interest in the school philosophy
- The candidate’s actions during the play-based observation
- The school’s assessment of references and past academic records
The following may also be considered:
- Availability of space in the year to which the candidate is applying
- Diversity and gender balance
- Siblings of students already enrolled
We do not use standardized tests for admission.
Admission is carried out on a rolling basis.
If you have questions that were not addressed in this FAQ, please do not hesitate to contact us.