Michael Booth, Principal of Blyth Academy Yorkville
Dear Blyth Yorkville community,
I am writing to inform you about a major development for the campus for next year. As I have discussed with many of you, our current property on St. Nicholas Street has been slated for redevelopment, and we have been seeking an alternative property for the last several years. With the range of changes that have come about in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have agreed, in consultation with the academic teams of both campuses and executive leadership, to merge our Yorkville and Lawrence Park campuses into a single school operating out of the current Lawrence Park facility. This merger will bring together the best of both campuses, and result in an even more robust and fulfilling experience for our students. Our team will also continue to lead the Orbit, virtual campus, as we have been doing this year.
I am currently working closely with the Principal of the Lawrence Park campus, Luke Coles, on a transition plan which will involve me assuming leadership of the new, merged campus in term 4 of this year. Classes and programming will continue at the Yorkville campus for the remainder of this academic year. We are hopeful that those students planning on returning to the Yorkville campus in September of 2021 look forward joining me in their new home on Yonge Street and Blythwood Road (between Lawrence and Eglington). As mentioned, the Orbit virtual campus will also provide options next year. For some, our Etobicoke Campus near High Park will provide a more desirable option. I have worked very closely with our Etobicoke Principal, Laurie Foley, for many years, and I am supremely confident that our students and families will discover incredible schools at whichever location they choose to attend.
I know that many of you have already initiated discussions with our Guidance Counsellor, Mike Minicucci, about next year’s plans. Please take some time to discuss this amongst your family, and Mike will continue to conduct these conversations in the coming days. I will be available as well to discuss your options going forward.
To schedule a meeting with Mike Minicucci, please feel free to use the following link:
To schedule a meeting with me, please feel free to use this link:
You will no doubt have many questions about the coming year, and we will discuss these with you in great detail as we proceed, however I would like to provide some preliminary information for your consideration:
Campus Links: To learn more about the Lawrence and Etobicoke Campuses, links are provided below.
Lawrence Park – https://blytheducation.com/blyth-academy/lawrence-park/
This Year: The campus merger will have no effect on students’ progress this year in any way.
Continuity: While we will discuss this in far greater detail in the coming days, it is important to note that both Lawrence Park and Etobicoke share Yorkville’s ongoing commitment to the levels of support, academic rigour, responsiveness and personalization that you have come to expect in your time at Blyth Academy. In my decade’s experience with Blyth, I can say with the highest confidence that the GTA campuses provide shining examples of our school’s signature approach to students’ educational experience at the highest standard.
Advantages: Some advantages to the merged campuses will include a larger cohort of students, particularly in the junior grades, which will enable us to provide more options for extra-curricular and course options. Also of note are the recently built facilities at both Lawrence and Etobicoke, as well as their access to oft-visited natural areas of the city’s park network.
Contacts: The Blyth Yorkville team, and in particular myself and Mike, will continue to be your principal points of contact. Mike will serve as your Guidance Counsellor, and facilitate coordination with your future destination as discussions proceed. I will be available, as always, for more general discussions about any questions, concerns or thoughts about your experiences at the school.
Some concluding thoughts. In a year of unprecedented uncertainty and change, this news will obviously arrive with bittersweet response. As many have noted, this week marks the anniversary of the COVID lockdown that came so suddenly last year. As I have noted repeatedly since, I have been overwhelmed by the resiliency and strength with which our community has responded to the challenges of the past year. Of late, I have been remarking that I am more proud of the work we have done this year than any other. It is no doubt sad to say goodbye to the building that has housed us, however I am looking forward to forging new bonds with new opportunities in the coming years.
Looking forward to our discussions.