Principal's Message

Thank you for your interest in our school. CGS has been a special place to start for so many children, and their families, since it was founded in 1986. We pride ourselves on getting to know each child and becoming their champion through their early and critical years of education.

As founding Principal, I have been honoured to work with, and support, a staff that has always been known for their dedication and commitment. As part of the CGS philosophy, each and every student is recognized and celebrated for who they are. CGS teachers deliver an exceptional program while keeping the heart in education.

I encourage you to come and visit us and see first-hand what makes CGS the special place it is. We hope you feel it as soon as you come through our doors! Learn more about my approach to education here.

Marie Bates
Co-Founder and Principal
Children’s Garden School

CGS22-Staff-Bates-Marie-_D722231

Meet Our CGS Staff

Learn More About CGS

2023 / 2024

Term 3 (2023 / 2024)
June 12, 2024 Last Day of School, Year End Assemblies
June 17 - 21, 2024 End of Year Camp - Week One
June 24 - 28, 2024 End of Year Camp - Week Two
Term 1 (2024 / 2025)
September 4, 2024 Early Start Parent Information Night (for Preschool Parents only) 5:00pm-6:00pm
September 5, 2024 First Day of Classes for JK-4
September 5, 2024 Staggered start for Early Start student Groups, according to Schedule provided
October 11, 2024 Terry Fox Walk with early dismissal (by noon)
October 14, 2024 Thanksgiving Day, School Closed
November 7, 2024 Dismissal by noon for P/T interviews
November 8, 2024 Midterm Break, School Closed
November 11, 2024 Midterm Break, School Closed
December 18, 2024 Last Day of Classes of Term 1
December 19, 2024 Holiday Camp - Day 1
December 20, 2024 Holiday Camp - Day 2
Term 2
January 6, 2025 PD Day for Teachers.  No Classes
January 7, 2025 First Day of Classes for Term 2
February 13, 2025 Dismissal by noon for P/T interviews until 5:00pm
February 14, 2025 Midterm Break, School Closed
February 17, 2025 Family Day, School Closed
March 6, 2025 Last Day of Classes for Term 2
March 7, 2025 First Day of March Break
Term 3
March 24, 2025 First Day of Classes for Term 3
April 18, 2025 Good Friday, School Closed
April 21, 2025 Easter Monday, School Closed
May 16, 2025 Victoria Day Weekend, School Closed
May 19, 2025 Victoria Day, School Closed
June 11, 2025 Last Day of School, Year End Assemblies
June 16 - June 20, 2025 End of Year Camp - Week One
June 23- June 27, 2025 End of Year Camp - Week Two

Next Steps

CGS graduates thrive at the top Toronto Private Schools. They are widely acknowledged by the admissions community for their academic readiness and social skills.

  • Upper Canada College
  • Havergal College
  • Royal St. George's College
  • The Bishop Strachan School
  • Crescent School
  • Branksome Hall
  • The York School
  • St. Clement's School
  • Sterling Hall School
  • Greenwood College School
  • Montcrest School

Crescent is thrilled to have forged a strong relationship with CGS over the years."

"We find CGS students to be happy, curious, creative and well-prepared academically."
~ Dave Shaw, Director of Enrolment and Financial Aid, Crescent School


“CGS is a fabulous school."

"CGS prepares their students well to transition into our program. Keep up the great learning!"
~ Elena Holeton, Director of Admission, St. Clement's School


“We have had the pleasure of welcoming CGS students to UCC for many years."

"They arrive ready for the academic and social environment of a larger school. We always look forward to the many ways CGS boys will contribute to our community."
~ David McBride, VP Enrollment Management, Upper Canada College


“Branksome Hall values its relationship with CGS."

"Students who have come out of CGS into Branksome are extremely well prepared and make a smooth transition into our learning environment.”
~Kimberly Carter, Director of Admission, Branksome Hall


“CGS students are a pleasure to teach."

"Royal St. George's College has been very fortunate to admit a number of students from CGS over the years. We find the graduates to be well prepared with strong academic and social skills."
~ Tom Stevens, Director of Admission, Royal St. George's College

CGS families may also choose to enter the public system after CGS, confident that their children have acquired the necessary skills before moving on. Neighbourhood schools like Bessborough, Blythwood, Northlea, Rolph Road or Maurice Cody are common destinations for CGS graduates.

Preparing for entrance into the larger schools can be a challenging process for some children so we work with students to ensure they are feeling confident and excited about what lies ahead.

The Children's Garden School Parent Association plays a vital role in CGS life. It is also an excellent way for parents to become involved in their school community. All parents are automatically members and meetings are held six times a year.

This dedicated group of mothers and fathers hold small scale fundraisers throughout the year and are also responsible for friend-raising events including our Fall Family Fun Night (pictured above), Bingo Night and Olympic Day. The funds raised each year by The CGS PA sponsor wonderful, curriculum enhancing events and workshops in the school every term.

Past PA sponsored events include, Drumfit workshops, Mad Science, African dance workshops, Anti-Bullying and Mindfulness presentations for students, staff and parents, amazing trips to Tree Top Trekking, theatrical presentations, visits from Pawsitively Pets and much more. The PA is always looking for ways to support the curriculum and bring unique learning opportunities to the students.

See a little of what the PA is up to here.

What is the CGS Foundation?

The Children’s Garden Foundation is a private, non-profit, charitable organization, established in 1999. It is run by a volunteer board of CGS parents on behalf of all parents at CGS. Thanks to the continued support of CGS parents and their fundraising efforts, the Children’s Garden Foundation is able to fulfill its mandate “to provide facilities, equipment, furnishings, teaching aids and supplies to enhance the education of the students at CGS.” The support of The Foundation is an integral part of maintaining the high standards and progressive learning environment at CGS.

Recent Foundation contributions include new resurfacing of the playground, comfortable new audience chairs for our student performances, new SMARTboards and additional washroom space for our Early Start students. In 2020 the Foundation sponsored our Stage Refurbishment Project and after an absence of live performances during COVID-19 we are so pleased to have our students finally able to use this lovely new space. Throughout the last few school years, the Foundation has supported ongoing replacement of classroom furniture and classroom technology.

Past contributions include an outdoor learning centre, risers for the choir, new gym floor, theatrical lighting for the stage, and a professional sound system.

Teachers also receive $500 every year to upgrade and refresh the learning materials in their classrooms. Purchases include books, science equipment, toys and furniture.

How Does the Foundation Raise Money?

“Reach for the Stars” Campaign

The “Reach for the Stars” campaign is the Children’s Garden Foundation’s ongoing program of annual giving. Donations are made when you register your child.
CGS parents have enthusiastically supported this program since it began in the spring of 1999. The campaign is run during each fiscal year to help the Foundation realize its' yearly objectives. Parents are asked to make an annual donation of $500 to the Foundation for each child enrolled at CGS. All donations are acknowledged with an official tax receipt. Funds raised are not saved for projects far in the future*, they are spent the year your child is enrolled to ensure value for all families. (*Larger projects, which require more planning, may be executed the following school year. Eg. the stage, playground and gym floor projects.)

The Gala

This biennial event is an opportunity for the CGS Foundation and parent body to raise money to target larger capital projects in the school. Our last Gala was held on April 27, 2019 and was a huge success. The monies raised funded our stage refurbishment project. The children continue to enjoy our 2017 Gala funded playground and 2015 Gala funded gym floor.
After an absence of a few years, due to COVID-19 restrictions, we look forward to our next Gala in the 2023-24 academic year.

 

At CGS, we have an inclusive policy. We do not have rigid guidelines regarding what kind of a learner a child has to be. We require that all of our students are able to manage the CGS curriculum and daily activities. If your child has a specific learning issue, we may be able to meet your family's needs. We believe that classrooms and students can benefit from varied experience and that students learn valuable life lessons from a non-homogeneous classroom. At CGS, we are here to create a successful environment for all of our students.

In order to assess whether or not a student can be successful at CGS it is extremely important that parents provide as much information as possible. If your child will require extra support, the admission process may be a little different. We may request that your child spend more time at CGS in order for CGS staff to make an informed decision about the readiness of your child.

Days at CGS are busy and full of transitions. Students are required to sit for short periods of time in order to complete desk work and students must be able to respect their fellow students and the school environment. Our goal at CGS is to create balanced classrooms and guarantee a quality learning environment for all of our students.

We have had incredible success with many ‘outside the box’ students and have seen impressive social, academic and artistic progress in these students over the years.

It is an integral part of the CGS philosophy that all students deserve a chance to thrive. Tolerance, acceptance and openness are vital qualities in the world and at CGS we aim to lead by example.

Parent Testimonials

"My husband and I made the decision to move our two boys to CGS because of COVID and all its associated unknowns."

CGS was exactly what we were looking for in a school, both during these tumultuous times and in general: a warm, welcoming and nurturing educational environment. Our boys’ transitions to Senior Kindergarten and Grade 3 were seamless. Within days, it was as though they’d never been anywhere else. We couldn’t be happier with the exceptional protocols CGS put in place for our children to safely return to in-class learning. We are so appreciative of the community and security offered by CGS, and look forward to many more years at this wonderful school."

~ The Hamilton Family

"Children's Garden School is the best decision we made for our daughter and son in their early education years."

During our 7 years at CGS, we were always impressed by how incredibly loving and caring the teachers and staff are.
Not only does the school offer a strong academic program, its whole person approach enables each and every student to shine in his/her own way. The school community is very close and welcoming, which we have benefitted from tremendously over the years. While it's time for us to move on this year, we know that CGS will always be a special place in our children's hearts. Thank you CGS!"

- The Wu Family 

“We trust this school immensely with the well-being, learning and development of our child."

Children's Garden School has truly exceeded our expectations for our son and daughter. The teachers love each and every child and have an incredible ability to bring out the magic in each one of them. The school goes above and beyond in so many aspects of academic life, and on top of that, there is a strong focus on character development in terms of respect, integrity, compassion and service. I know my children will graduate from CGS as confident, powerful and loving young people. What a gift. Thank you CGS!"

~ The Chandarana Family

"After just one year at CGS, we cannot believe the progress our son has made."

He has not only learned a ton, but he has developed into a more confident and independent boy. We credit the amazing teachers and staff at CGS who deeply care about each child. We are so grateful to have found such a wonderful school. Thank you.

~ The Gomes Family

"We have been thrilled and impressed with all aspects of the school."

Our son attended CGS before moving on to UCC and our daughter is currently enrolled in Grade 2. We love the science and technology component of her weekly classroom work, CGS House activities and team building events. We especially love the monthly assemblies. These events provide children with the opportunity to work together and build exceptional confidence through the year. The staff and faculty at CGS are incredible. They provide a warm and supportive environment while also challenging the children and encouraging them to achieve new goals. We are so grateful for the wonderful experience that our children have had at CGS.

~The Parsons Family

"Now in Grade 2, my once tiny CGS preschooler is devouring chapter books, spelling like a champ and loving math."

As a CGS parent going on 5 years I have, with each passing term, looked back in wonder at what children are capable of when provided a rigorous curriculum, structure and enriched programming in a perfectly nurturing environment. Now in grade 2, my once tiny CGS preschooler is devouring chapter books, spelling like a champ and loving math. From the enriched programming and extracurricular activities, he confidently auditions for the school musicals, has been exposed to philanthropic outreach programs and gets up on stage to deliver speeches to the students and parent-body. The staff are incredibly warm and loving and because of the small class sizes, they truly get to know your child and the nuances of their individual personalities and learning styles. My second child is now in the Early Start (preschool) program and my husband and I cannot wait to see all of the wonderful experiences that await her through her years as a CGS student.

~ The Ferris Family

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