A goal within Trillium Lakelands District School Board (TLDSB) is to enhance the elementary to secondary transition process by providing more time for Grade 8 students to be immersed in learning at their future high school. Over the past couple of months, Grade 8 students from across the Board have been doing just that by taking part in in-person transition opportunities.
Bracebride and Muskoka Lakes Secondary School and Huntsville High School have been running a school-within-a-school model, which enabled each incoming student to experience an entire day learning within the school. Grade 8 homeroom teachers were each assigned a classroom for the day at the secondary school and were able to teach within this space. Students also heard from the school’s Guidance Department, administration, and current secondary school students throughout the day.
Through the Gold Collar initiative, I.E. Weldon Secondary School, Fenelon Falls Secondary, Lindsay Collegiate and Vocational Institute, and Gravenhurst High School introduced the school’s experiential programs to Grade 8s through interactive experiences. These programs include Specialist High Skills Majors (SHSM), Take Tech, cooperative education, Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP), and dual credits.
The transition from elementary to secondary school is often deemed one of the most challenging transitions for students. In TLDSB, we will continue to explore how we can alleviate the stresses associated with this transition and help students have a positive experience. Continuing to bring elementary intermediate educators and students together with secondary staff and students is key to this process.
If you have any questions about Grade 8 to 9 transition opportunities, contact your secondary school guidance counselor.