Life at Louise Dean School
There is no school like Louise Dean School.
School begins with a hot breakfast in the Student Lounge and students parking their baby buggies in their assigned parking spots. Babies are brought into the Student Lounge for a meet-and-greet and to delight the staff and other students. After an update on ‘how the night went’, students settle their children in the Learning Centres and make their way to classes.
School work is taken seriously, as students realize that they have little time in the evening to do homework. Working hard at school ensures that homework is very limited. If students have to nurse their child, childcare workers call them out of class. If they need to meet with a social worker, they are also excused from classes. School is flexible, but academic standards are kept high. Our young women are capable and they learn that they can balance school and parenting.
Learning to reach out for support from staff and peers is part of life at Louise Dean School. It is recognized as a sign of maturity and responsible parenting. We are a community that is dedicated to working together.
Life, when you bring your child to school with you…buggies, cribs and a circle of welcoming friends and staff.
Students at Louise Dean School are very successful and we always celebrate their success!
At the end of each school Term, students and staff gather for some fun and to recognize the dedication that is needed to move learning forward. Students lead these celebrations and ensure that all students who have achieved First and Second Class Honors and perfect attendance are presented with certificates and gift cards. Students may enter school with many doubts that they can be successful in their learning. Over time, these students often recognize that they are capable learners and then school takes on a new meaning.
Graduation is celebrated by all of our students and staff, not just the graduates! This school celebration is always set for the end of June, after all of the diploma exams are written. Only those students who have completed the requirements for a diploma or a certificate walk the stage. Graduates are always involved in setting the theme and they speak of the challenges and successes that they have encountered in their school years.
The young women are always dressed in beautiful gowns and their children are also dressed for the special day. Families and friends are invited to join this afternoon celebration that is held at the Village Park Inn. In 2015, 40 young women achieved their goal of high school completion! Graduation is the highlight of the school year.
Our students are constantly encouraged to demonstrate positive leadership in their school, community and family life. All students should recognize that they have the power to create positive change in the world and we work to ensure that they have the skills to exercise this leadership.
Students are offered opportunities to be involved in a number of organized school groups, with the main group being Student Leadership. This team of students meets twice a week to organize school spirit days, celebrate birthday parties, promote community and global learning and generally take on any student need that presents.
Baby FAST (Families and Schools Together)
Baby FAST is a celebration of family life. This eight week, after school program, allows our moms to bring their child and family/support network in for an evening of food and fun. Facilitated by CFS, students and their families spend time together in fun activities with the child. Our students are coached in positive interaction strategies and they teach each other. At the end of eight weeks, we celebrate their success with a Baby FAST graduation.
This fun noon hour club introduces our students and their child to the world of literacy. Instead of heading down to lunch, our students join together in the library for a noon hour of learning children’s songs and stories. Students are encouraged to read to their child on a daily basis so that a love of literacy is fostered at a very early age.
Family Fun Nights and Celebrating the Holidays
Catholic Family Service and the school invite students and their families or friends in for an evening meal and a chance to have some family fun at least four times/year. The evening is anchored by a free shared meal, but the fun always comes in meeting new people, playing some group games and taking home a seasonal craft.
In addition to these celebrations, the school celebrates all of the seasonal holiday and makes time for regular fun lunches that bring all of the students and staff together.
Classes that are unique to Louise Dean School
The school supports our students by offering specialized Life Skill, Prenatal and Parenting classes. All of these courses are high school credit based, but they recognize the unique learning needs of our students. Students have the opportunity to freely and confidentially discuss issues related to pregnancy and the challenges that many young mothers face. The classes are highly informative and personalized to support all of our students.
Teachers, nurses and social workers collaborate in teaching these classes.
Louise Dean School has a fully equipped cosmetology lab where students are able to earn up to 35 credits. For students interested in pursuing a career in cosmetology, this program provides a very strong foundation for learning that is well recognized by salons across the city or as an access point to an apprenticeship.
The school also has a fully equipped kitchen, where students interested in a career in Foods can earn 30 credits. Whether the desire is cooking at home or in a commercial operation, students develop very strong culinary skills.
Class sizes are small and student success is high.
Very few of our students enter school with an interest in sewing or knitting; however after a Term of ‘handy-work’ with a group of friends, many reregister. Students make blankets for children and knit hats and blankets. They love the relaxed environment of a sewing circle and take great pride in their work.
All of the classes offer students access to current technology and the use of a personal laptop. Students are encouraged to utilize technology to support their learning and to become fluent with both PCs and Macs.
Life at Louise Dean changes from day-to-day! Students have good days, great days…and sometimes days filled with challenges. We celebrate their commitment to education and applaud the effort that they put into making it to school every day. Students who need a break from full-time school are welcomed back when they return.