At all grade levels the Windermere Leadership Program promotes social responsibility and youth volunteer involvement. Through community based experiential learning, and opportunities to actively engage in local and global issues, we push students to integrate their past, present, and dreams for the future; resulting in a realm of potential, where a student’s values, experiences, and knowledge, direct academic pursuits and future goals.
The program is organized so that students take four courses together as a cohort on a "Leadership Day" and are integrated with the mainstream school on their non-Leadership day.
We often refer to John C Maxwell's quote that "A leader is one who knows the way, shows the way, and goes the way" to encompass the leadership development we see in our students. Our students start out by learning leadership skills through a safe and supportive cohort. As they progress, they are able to demonstrate those skills to effect positive change in the community. By the time they leave Leadership, our students journey into adulthood supported by the leadership skills they now confidently put into practice.
Learn more about what happens in each grade by reading our descriptions below. Please also feel free to download our full pamphlet.
Grade 8: In the first year of the program, students are expected to be actively involved in our multifaceted program. Students combine PHE 8, Social Studies 8, Science 8 and English 8 in a four-course full day. Students are expected to volunteer for a minimum of 20 hours this year on initiatives that fit the Leadership program philosophy. We encourage students to work within the structures present at our school including our Garden Club, the Windermere Community Programs office, as well as other organizations, although student have the autonomy to choose other volunteer opportunities as well.
Grade 9: In the second year of the program, students again combine PHE 9, Social Studies 9, Ecology 9, and English 9 in a four-course full day. Students also build on leadership and citizenship skills through new challenges and opportunities. Students are again expected to volunteer for a minimum of 20 hours this year on initiatives that fit the Leadership program philosophy. We encourage students to build leadership capacity by taking on more in-depth roles and responsibilities as they venture into the community.
Grade 10: In the third year of the program, students combine PHE 10, Social Studies 10, English 10, and CLE (Career-Life Education) 10 in a four-course full day. Students are again expected to volunteer for a minimum of 20 hours this year on initiatives that fit the Leadership program philosophy. Most students do far more than this. Students now begin to take ownership and initiate opportunities for elementary, Grade 8, and Grade 9 students to participate in as well as building their repertoire of leadership skills by taking on greater levels of responsibility.
Grade 11: The fourth year of the program sees students combine for PHE 11, Social Studies 11, English 11, and Environmental Science 11 in a four-course full day. Students now volunteer for a minimum of 40 hours this year on initiatives that fit the Leadership program philosophy, with many students exceeding these hours by far. Our senior students now have the skills to lead junior students to create positive change through various initiatives and programs. Students continue grow in their volunteering roles, leading the charge for change.
Click the picture to read about some of our projects!
Grade 12: The fifth and final year of the program culminates with students working on individual projects under the guidance of a CLC (Career-Life Connections) 12 teacher mentor, and sometimes working directly with Windermere Community Programs or individual Leadership projects. Students are expected to take on new challenges that will allow them continued growth as leaders. This is an off-timetable block; students meet 2-3 times a month to debrief and discuss the successes and difficulties they face.