Community effort for Seven Summits

The Seven Summits Centre of Learning is a go for the Fall of 2013. They have achieved their minimum enrollment numbers.

A few weeks back we asked Rosslanders to imagine a school.

We asked you to take the negativity and frustration of the last decade and channel it into a new possibility for our community.

And now, we are pleased to tell you that The Seven Summits Centre of Learning is a go for the Fall of 2013. We have achieved our minimum enrolment numbers, and will continue to accept applications from interested students from the region and beyond throughout the summer.

The Neighbourhoods of Learning Committee, Visions for Small Schools society and Red Mountain Academies are excited to bring forth what we expect to be a mutually beneficial partnership with SelfDesign Learning Community.

SelfDesign’s programs have won several awards in teaching and learning, including the Prime Minister’s Award for excellence in education innovation. It is SelfDesign’s philosophy that we are all learners and learning happens in many ways and places.

SelfDesign’s mission is to empower each learner and family to direct their own learning path. SelfDesign offers inquiry-based, personalized learning customized to each learner’s needs, with teachers on the ground, in the classrooms.

The Seven Summits Centre for Learning welcomes Grade 8 to 12 students to register to attend in September. We will offer a full graduation program leading to the B.C. Dogwood Certificate, as well as a host of other electives and options for workshops, based on student interests and passions. SelfDesign even offers a mobile science lab.

Education is provided by specially trained SelfDesign mentors, who are certified B.C. teachers. Mentors are in the classroom to support the learning at a low student-teacher ratio.

Students can expect to feel supported, and parents can expect to be included. While student schedules may be flexible, supervision will be provided through the usual school hours.

Students in Grade 10 to 12 will be allowed to cross-enrol at other high schools, and will also be able to participate in extracurricular activities, including sports teams. Legislation that would allow Grade 8’s and 9’s to cross-enrol is expected to pass later this year.

In a completely separate initiative, we have a unique opportunity through funding provided by the Columbia Basin Trust to develop concurrent youth-focused programming that will connect all Rossland youth, no matter which school they attend, to activities in the community, and to each other.

We welcome community members with shareable skills to participate in building a true community of learning. If you have a talent that you’d like to share with our community’s youth, please contact and tell us about yourself.

We would also like to thank everyone who attended our public meeting last week. We were thrilled to have SelfDesign Vice Principal Barbarah Nicoll on hand to share the philosophy of SDH and answer questions from prospective students and parents. Barbarah Nicoll will return to Rossland in the very near future to hold a more in-depth information session with registered students and those who want to learn more.

For more information including courses offered,  and to download a registration package, visit

Congratulations Rossland. Your passion has made this happen.

— Aerin Guy, NOL coordinator

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