Calgary has grown in popularity over the years, and that growth is not expected to slow down any time soon. After consistently winning the title of being one of the best cities to live in throughout Canada, North America, and the world, it's no wonder the population is growing. As the population grows, those considering moving to Calgary will inevitably be curious about the schools that serve the community. From Calgary condos to luxury homes, the local real estate is located near excellent public schools, charter schools, private schools, and universities. Read on to learn all about the schools and school districts in Calgary, Alberta.
Public School Districts Serving Calgary
The Calgary Board of Education makes up the largest school district in all of Western Canada. However, it's broken into several smaller school districts in Calgary. Over 240 schools are available for students to attend in Calgary alone. Depending on where students live, parents may or may not zone their children to a different school. Fortunately, parents can have peace of mind that all of these schools are dedicated to creating a welcoming and warming environment.
In the 2020-2021 school year, the Calgary Board of Education received an additional $20.6 million on top of its normal $1 billion annual budget. This additional funding increase will cover the costs of opening three new schools and welcoming 3,000 new students. Residents can reference the Calgary Area School Directory for more information on local schools.
Since there are hundreds of schools in Calgary, only a few of the largest schools have been listed below.
- Altadore School: Regular (K-6)
- Cambrian Heights School: Regular (K-6)
- Valley Creek School: Regular (4-9) & Early French Immersion (4-9)
- Clarence Sansom School: Regular (7-9)
- Alternative High School: Alternative (10-12)
- Forest Lawn High School: Regular (10-12), Advanced Placement (AP) (10-12), Dual Credit (10-12), & Off-Campus Work Experience (10-12)
Since Calgary is such a diverse city, some of the schools are offered in multiple languages. Parents can dictate which language they prefer their child to learn at the time of enrollment. The Calgary Board of Education school directory allows parents to search for schools based on several criteria. They can also learn about available transportation to and from school each day.
Calgary Charter Schools
The charter schools in Calgary are designed to provide autonomous education through unique learning or teaching styles. These non-profit public schools are permitted to teach different approaches, philosophies, and pedagogies. So long as these schools meet basic education requirements set forth by the Alberta Department of Education, the schools may then modify their lesson plans. Currently, 13 charter schools across 23 buildings exist in Alberta. Many are located in Calgary. Some of the largest charter schools in Calgary have been detailed below.
Calgary Arts Academy Society offers K to grade 10 education that is focused on the arts. Students select one of the following five to cultivate through their time at the academy: music, visual art, dance, drama, and literary art.
Calgary Girls' School Society is an all-girls charter school that focuses on STEAM education for grades 4 to 9. Educators help their students identify which STEAM area they excel at and allow them to focus their elective courses on these principles.
Aurora Academic Charter School provides traditional elementary and middle school education. However, the school also focused on building diligence, dedication, academic achievement, and character into every assignment. The school hopes to create the next generation of leaders through its education efforts.
Calgary Private Schools
Some parents find private schools in Calgary the best choice. The private schools in the area can be found in neighbourhoods such as the Downtown West End community, Crescent Heights neighbourhood, Bridgeland neighbourhood, and the Renfrew community. Costs start as lost as $3,000 and can exceed $20,000. The largest private schools in Calgary are detailed below.
Lycée Louis Pasteur provides co-ed private education from preschool to grade 12. It is the only school to teach the French Ministry of Education and Alberta Education curricula. The classes are taught in a traditional setting. All linguistic backgrounds are permitted at the school. Parents can expect to pay annual tuition of $14,700 to $20,000, depending on the grade.
The Calgary Academy & Calgary Collegiate provides K to grade 12 co-education in a private environment, both in-person and online. The school offers two levels, which are customized to meet the students' needs. The first is Academy, designed for students with learning difficulties. The second is Collegiate, which is for students who are at or above the grade level. Tuition ranges from $13,900 to $18,885 annually.
Banbury Crossroads School offers preschool to grade 12 education on an individual needs basis. Classes are small and feature multi-age groups. Rather than focus on drilling information, instructors focus on engaging children at all levels of learning. Tuition ranges from $9,000 to $10,000 annually.
Colleges and Universities Near Calgary
Several higher education options exist within Calgary. The first is Bow Valley College, which provides fast-track programs designed to accelerate individuals in their industry upon graduation. Some students live with roommates in Calgary townhomes near campus. Annual tuition fees range from $5,000 to $8,000, depending on the type of program that is being completed.
The University of Calgary is one of the largest universities in Alberta. Diverse educational and research programs are available for students. Both undergraduate and graduate coursework are available. The school also offers open studies and continuing education credits to qualifying students. The average tuition is $5,500+/- per term (not per year).
Columbia College Calgary is a smaller, not-for-profit college focused on getting students started on their higher education journey on the right foot. Students can achieve technical degrees that allow them to excel in their chosen professional industry. Fees range from $6,000 to $18,000 for the entire program.
Discover Education Opportunities in Calgary
Calgary is a great destination to call home for those looking to grow in a city that is ever-growing itself. Students who grow up in Calgary will have access to a valuable education that fits their needs. They can then choose to stay local and finish their higher education near home, or they will have the skills to thrive in any city they choose. Combine that with the abundance of things to do with kids in Calgary, and anyone would be hard-pressed to find a better city to live in than Calgary. When it comes to creating a thriving, welcoming community, Calgary excels like no other city in the world.