a parent shares their dmcs experience...
I am writing this letter to share with the school, its staff, and all others who make this school possible, the journey of our son and to express our gratitude for the positive impact DMCS has had on his young life and that of our entire family.
He was always very curious and eager to learn. From a very early age, he chose to spend his spare time reading encyclopaedias, learning and playing chess and music or watching Jeopardy with his grandfather. He had few common interests with the average children his age, but he got along fabulously with adults. He has, and always has had, a very strong sense of Justice, and has understood the difference between right and wrong forever … instinctively. He has a heart of gold.
His values are deeply anchored. And they guide his journey through life. He will not partake in behaviours simply to be part of a group, if such behaviours offend his values. He would therefore come to the help of children being bullied, refuse to partake in group bullying, etc. This, as well as his lack of common interests with the children his age, contributed to his status in the school’s social hierarchy. He was alienated very early on, and suffered the related bullying that often comes with being different.
The extent of his distress became strikingly clear to us the day he asked to be home-schooled, so that he could learn something new and not have to endure the bullying. We had noticed that he was slowly retreating to a space where no one could reach him, even his family. That is when my search for a new school began.
We heard of DMCS through a colleague whose son had lived similar experiences. I contacted the school and met with Mrs. Burnham, the principal, to get an idea of the values being honoured at the school. Mrs. Burnham was simply amazing. She gave him a chance to attend school for a day so that he could decide for himself whether this was a learning environment he would enjoy. He came home from DMCS that one day, begging us to let him go to that school immediately.
Olivier moved to DMCS half way through grade 6, in January 2017. When he arrived, he was promoted to Grade 7. The decision to move him to grade 7 has not only boosted his self confidence (which was sorely suffering), it has kept him challenged and fuelled his desire to learn. He is doing meaningful homework for the first time since he started school AND is excited about it; he is learning how to work, and the co-relation between hard work and satisfying results.
DMCS has satisfied our son's learning need, but most importantly, it has soothed and healed his soul. The sparkle is back in his beautiful blue eyes, and he is happy and playful again. Shortly after joining DMCS, he said to me: “Maman, I did not know that school could be so good. I actually feel like I belong.”
In my line of work, this is when we say: “I rest my case”.
Thank you DMCS, for valuing individuality and respect for all. And thank you for giving us our son back, we are forever grateful.
An aspect I love about my DMCS experience is the accepting nature of the other students, both in my grade 8 class and in the other grades as well. The first day, after my transfer, I was very nervous about coming into a new environment and not knowing any of the other students. When my parents and I arrived for the first day of class, one of the other girls in my class had made me a greeting card and every student had signed it. I can say that I have never had a more welcoming group of people in my life. The entire class has included me in their social lives and I believe that these are people who will remain my good friends for life. In the short time I have been a student here, I have always found the other students and their parents to be both friends and very supportive of both me and all the other kids in the class.
I would also like to speak about my teachers and the other staff at the school. All of the staff have provided me with excellent guidance both academically and spiritually. As with the students in my class, my teachers went out of their way to make me feel comfortable and part of the DMCS family, when I arrived, as they do for every student. I find it very impressive that my teachers and the school staff will, not just during the school day, but even on their own time, go out of their way to make our experience at DMCS a rewarding and fulfilling experience.
-Grade 8 Student
DMCS is a school that changed my heart and mind. A few years back, before I was enrolled in DMCS, I was that one small girl who started the first year of public school, crowded and shuffled around with people who were also in a similar kind of situation, with zero English experience, zero friends and zero knowledge for such unfamiliar places.
My English barely improved which was big trouble for me because without English, I wasn’t capable of doing math, history, creative writing or, really, anything. My parents knew that this was not the reason why we moved here, so they searched for a new school and found Divine Mercy Catholic School. I didn’t expect much; I was nervous for the future. This thought changed quickly when my English improved quickly in only my first year! Why was this? My new friends included me in everything and found me wherever I was hiding. Teachers helped me out with such care. My grades began to improve and most importantly, I learned about faith and true ways of life. I started to enjoy my school life and knew in my heart I didn’t have to hold back anymore. Who would have thought that such a small school was capable of changing the life of a person?
This School showed me about love and another way to see my life. I wish people knew more about it. I would love to tell anyone about DMCS – especially those who have been through a hard time or those who are not too sure of the journey of life; those who need love.
- Songeun Cho