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Find Schools

York Region has some of the best school systems in Ontario. We welcome students from around the world and across Canada.

Elementary and Secondary Schools (age 4-18)

The Ontario Ministry of Education is responsible for the province's school system. Elementary and secondary public schools are free. Secondary schools are often called high schools.

There are also many programs and resources for pre-school aged children in York Region to help them prepare for school. More information on resources for pre-school children can be found at York Region Early Intervention Services. There are also a number of services offered to pre-school aged children through the York Region District School Board.

Elementary schools provide junior kindergarten and kindergarten programs (for children ages four and five) and grades one through eight (for children ages six to thirteen).

Secondary schools offer grades nine through twelve. In order to earn an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), students must complete at least 30 credits (normally, 1 course = 1 credit). Students must also do 40 hours of community service and pass the literacy requirement.

To learn more about the Ontario Education system, visit Newcomers' Guides to Education in Ontario. These guides have information and suggestions on how to help your children in school. You can find information about registering your child in school, school policies, what students learn, and how students are graded in Ontario.

School Boards

There are four publicly-funded school systems in York Region: 

  • English Public
  • English Catholic
  • French-language Public
  • French-language Catholic

Public elementary and secondary schools and Catholic secondary schools are open to all students. Catholic elementary schools are open to students who are baptized as Roman Catholic and students who have one or two Roman Catholic parents.

York Region's school boards are:

For information on registering your child to attend school in one of the above York Region school boards please visit:

There are a variety of programs and resources for students in York Region to whom English is a second language. Visit the page to find out where you can take English as a Second Language (ESL) classes in your area.

In Ontario, students also have the choice to attend private schools. Private schools are less common in Canada than in other countries and they are largely religious, language or culturally based institutions with a unique approach to teaching.

Private schools offer both elementary and secondary level education and often require students to wear uniforms.  In general, private schools are not funded or are only partially funded by the government and students must pay tuition fees. The Ontario Ministry of Education has an up-to-date list of private schools in Ontario.

In York Region there are a variety of different specialized programs offered at the secondary school level. If you would like to see a list of the current programs being offered by the York Region District school board visit their specialized programs page.

Universities and Colleges (age 18+)

Many of the best universities and colleges in Ontario are located close to York Region and are accessible by local transit.

Universities and colleges are sometimes referred to as post-secondary schools. The words "college" and "university" sometimes have different meanings in different English-speaking countries. In Canada, colleges and universities are different institutions - usually, colleges have different kinds of programs than universities do. They offer specialized learning for adults and high school graduates. Students attending university or college must pay tuition fees and costs.

Universities are institutions that can award degrees. All Canadian universities offer undergraduate (bachelor's) degrees and many have graduate (Master's and doctoral) programs. An undergraduate degree can usually take about three to four years to complete (eight months/year). Many universities allow students to combine subject areas and also offer professional programs such as medicine, dentistry and law. Universities are independent and regulate their own programs, admissions and faculty.

Colleges offer practical, hands-on career training. Ontario colleges offer certificate and diploma programs that can take one to three years to complete. Many also offer bachelor's degrees in applied areas of study and have joint programs with a number of different universities. Some colleges also called vocational schools, pre-trades and apprenticeship training, language training and skills upgrading.

University and college course calendars provide information regarding entrance requirements, student services, housing, tuition fees, scholarships and a variety of other subjects for prospective students. You can obtain a calendar by writing to the office of admissions at the school that you are interested in learning about.

Cost of postsecondary education in Ontario - In Ontario, universities and colleges receive funding from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities. Tuition is not free, however, there are several options available to help you get funding to enrol in a university or college program.

The college or university you plan to attend may offer grants, loans and scholarships which are often listed in their course calendars. Make sure to inquire about any of these resources that might be available.

You may also apply to the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). The Canadian government also has a variety of other programs that offer financial assistance to those wishing to gain a post secondary education in Canada. Visit for excellent information on student assistance programs and benefits.

International Students - If you are a non-resident of Canada and wish to attend school here, you may need a study permit or a temporary resident visa. Find out how to apply for a study permit, where to get application forms and guides and what documents to provide with your application at Citizenship & Immigration Canada.

Apprenticeship program in Ontario - An apprenticeship is a form of job training that enables you to learn by doing. As an apprentice you work under the supervision of a person skilled in the job you wish to learn. That individual teaches you how to do the work. As part of all apprenticeships, there is an in-school educational component. This educational component is provided at one of the colleges in Ontario. Apprentices are paid while gaining work experience. Wages can increase depending on your level of skill.

Skilled workers are in high demand in many industries. In Ontario, there are more than 140 skilled trades, ranging from auto mechanics to arborists and from chefs to welders.

If you are interested in becoming a tradesperson, Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities has information on apprenticeship training in Ontario.

Credential Evaluations - The following organizations will evaluate educational qualifications you received in another country. It's important to know that an evaluation prepared for an employer may not be the same as an evaluation prepared for a school, training program, college or university for higher education.

These organizations charge a fee for their services and the process they follow may vary. For more information on their evaluation programs and services, visit their websites:

Contact the regulatory body for your profession, or a recognized credential evaluation service organization to find out the process.


For more information about schools in York Region and Ontario: