Our school story begins in 1977, the year Blyth was founded. Blyth Academy was a pioneer in the early years of education and adventure travel. Amongst various educational firsts was the establishment of a Canadian high school in France, the Lycée Canadien en France and a university campus, the Universite Canadienne En France, as well as the first accredited high school program on the campus of Oxford University.
Blyth Academy is Canada’s leading private school by enrollment. With average class sizes of seven, individuated teaching and an experiential approach, Blyth offers excellent university preparation. More than 98 per cent of our graduates attend the universities and colleges of their first choice. This year, students have received admissions offers from some of the top universities in the world including Cambridge, Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and MIT. Click here to see full list.
In the field of travel, Blyth Academy operated the first bike tour in the People’s Republic of China in 1979 as well as adult bike trips behind the Iron Curtain in the early 1980’s. High-latitude travel followed with icebreaker expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic. By 2000, we were the global leader in the field, opening up new areas to environmentally sensitive exploration.
In 2002, Blyth Academy opened its first high school in Canada on the third floor of a walk-up building in the heart of Toronto. With enrollment of 12 students and three classrooms, it was a modest but promising start. In 2005, a second school followed in Thornhill, and thereafter one or two schools each year. We now have 11 schools in Canada, as well as Blyth Academy Online and the Global High School. Blyth Academy International Summers is Canada’s largest provider of internationally accredited education. In 2015, more than 1200 students took part in 25 programs to more than 40 countries.
In 2015, we opened Blyth-Templeton Academy in Washington DC, and in 2016 received Candidacy Accreditation from the Middle States Association.
In September 2016, Blyth Academy opened up a school in Qatar
In 2017-18, Blyth Academy will open up a school in Florence (Italy).
Where will the Blyth Academy story go next?
At Blyth Academy, our classroom experience is unparalleled and unique.
Blyth Academy’s primary focus is on enhancing academic achievement to prepare all students for university and beyond. As testament to Blyth Academy’s unique teaching methods and strategies, 98% of our students go on to post-secondary education, with 95% receiving their first-choice of school. 40% of students received either partial or full scholarship to post-secondary education.
Small Classes, Big Reward
With class sizes that average fewer than seven students, we are able to provide a highly personalized education. Every one of our students has a seat at the front of the class; everyone is involved and everyone receives the full attention of the teacher. This encourages the full engagement of the entire class, each and every day and fosters a more participatory atmosphere where every student gets plenty of individual attention.
Thanks to our small class sizes, we are able to teach the student, not just the curriculum. Teacher feedback on the students’ progress can go into more depth and is immediately applicable for that week.
One Size Does Not Fit All
Here at Blyth, we tailor the curriculum to the individual student, not the other way around. By taking into account each student’s learning style and extra-curricular responsibilities, we are able to customize a plan unique to the individual.
Through Blyth Academy’s ability to customize learning to the individual, we are a popular educational solution for elite student athletes. Our student body in 2013 includes competitive freestyle skiers, ballet dancers, figure skaters, equestrians, hockey players, and other elite student athletes. To find out more about how Blyth Academy may be right for your elite student athlete, click here.
For Each Student, A School
With eleven different campuses to choose from, there is a school for every student. From the urban Yorkville to the uptown Thornhill, every Blyth campus exudes its own unique personality and style.
Students are able to join Blyth Academy full-time at four standard entry points during the school year; however, transitions are simple to arrange any time when a switch is needed. Blyth Academy manages the paperwork, transcripts, and report cards.
To complement our full-time school, students may also wish to take part in evening or weekend part-time or private courses to lean forward during their school year, or participate in our popular summer school program to reach ahead for the next school year.
A School of the Community
Our Blyth campuses do not feature large libraries, luxurious gymnasiums, or aquatic centres. Instead, Blyth students are integrated into the community around them by using and enjoying local libraries, local swimming pools, and local recreational facilities. By using and appreciating the facilities around us, we build a deep relationship with the community at large, and give back to our neighbourhoods.
Rich, Experiential Learning Opportunities
Blyth Academy’s unique experiential learning environment is one of the key pillars of our success. Experiential learning encourages students to be enthusiastic and engaged in their learning process. It brings the classroom to life, and takes the students outside the traditional classroom setting to participate in hands-on learning.
To accomplish this, we hire teachers who have experience outside of the traditional classroom to ensure that they can bring a different and personal perspective to their subjects. Our partnerships with various learning institutions in the community, such as the Royal Ontario Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto International Film Festival and Outward Bound Canada at the Evergreen BrickWorks, as well as many applicable local organizations, further allow us to take students out of the classroom to learn through active, hands-on participation.
We do not simply partner with these local organizations. We co-develop our courses with our partners to create an immersive and rich learning opportunity.
Experiential learning creates engagement as learning becomes real when it applies to the students’ world. By interacting with their peers, their teachers, and their curriculum in real-world settings, students are better prepared for university and life skills develop.
Sports, Wellness, and Integrated Athletics
At Blyth, we understand that athletic excellence takes great discipline and focus. We can customize a learning plan for your child that not only works around his or her athletic training schedule, but also integrates into it. For more information on our integrated athletic program, click here.
Accessible Staff, Accessible Administration
There is nothing more important to us than the happiness and academic success of our students. Each Blyth school has a dedicated guidance counsellor that works one on one with your child to mentor and manage the university selection process, career advice, and all day-to-day academic and personal issues. Every Head of School has an open-door policy, allowing free dialogue between the student, parent, and administration. To find out more about the Heads of School, click here.
Commitment to Customized, Research-Based Teaching Methods
At Blyth, we use the most up-to-date, research-based teaching methodology, such as block teaching, “teacher as coach,” and authentic forms of assessment. This paradigm shift has proven successful at Blyth—more than 95% of our students are accepted into their first choice of university, and are better prepared to succeed not only in their first year, but also beyond.
The academic year at Blyth Academy is divided into four terms of ten and a half weeks. This cutting-edge restructuring of the traditional academic school year has dramatic benefits for the student. Our Grade 9–12 students take only two courses per term, as opposed to a more traditional semester setting (four courses a semester) or a full-year setting (eight courses daily spanning the entire academic year). This means that Grade 9–12 students are able to manage their academic workload much more effectively. Two-hour classes, taken five days a week, allow more time for in-depth review and for individual attention to our students on an ongoing basis. Our Grade 5–8 students enjoy a regular eight-course term.
Students often cite their preference for our model. One of our students, Dylan Fisher McCarney, put it this way:
Finding a school that could fit my busy schedule was nearly impossible. From the small class sizes to the diverse and experienced teachers, Blyth helped me balance my high school life.
Furthermore, homework is much more evenly balanced, so students avoid ‘crisis points’ where they have work due in many courses all at once.
This model also closely resembles the academic life of a university, where semesters are shorter and highly focused.
The Whole Student
Blyth Academy not only provides a world-class education but also a rich and well-rounded student experience. All students are given the opportunity to participate in various sports activities and teams, take leadership roles in the school including student council and mega-council , and form and run school clubs such as our Model United Nations, the Ski & Snowboard club, Drama club and so much more.
Every year, Blyth Academy offers overnight camps, a full community service program, Terry Fox day, fall and winter activity days, a popular Chicago trip, and university tours.
At the conclusion of Grade 12, Blyth Academy is pleased to host a full graduation ceremony and prom, which is an extremely popular way of celebrating our students’ achievements.