Our School

 

To Stratford Hall, being an Urban School means that we are part of the fabric of a vibrant city and not isolated from it. There are several benefits that have become clear to us over time.

First, as a school we have an obligation to protect our environment and to model sustainability to our students. Our central location and easy public transit access makes it possible to reduce automobile trips (indeed, many of our teachers walk, bike or bus to school each day). For senior students, transit access gives greater flexibility to extend school hours and participate in activities or spend time with teachers after school. Our facilities use available land very effectively, and we share public parks.

Second, the city’s resources are close by and easily accessed. The city itself becomes part of our classroom. Places like Science World and Granville Island are nearby and our senior students have volunteered in the downtown eastside, a highly impoverished area.

Third, we believe that an International Baccalaureate school should be seen by all as part of the city, not separate from it. We are part of the fabric of the east side of Vancouver. Our two blocks along Commercial Drive are lively and pedestrian dominated as our students move from building to building and to the park.

Fourth, our students experience the real world. In many schools, students are very sheltered; this can result in a difficult transition to post-secondary work. At Stratford Hall students are aware of the diversity that makes daily life interesting. They are exposed to the pulse of the city. Social service agencies, such as those found on the downtown east side, become part of their experience. It is evident to students that they are privileged and have a responsibility to make a better world. We embrace our location and are proud to be an urban school.