by Paul Romani (M.Ed.)

Switching to Pear Tree as an Older Student

by Paul Romani (M.Ed.)

Switching to Pear Tree Elementary as an older student is a change that you’ll wish you had made sooner!


Even if you’re in Grade 6 or 7, it’s not too late to make the switch and be much happier and much smarter!

switching school

Why Should You Change School?

I know this is a question you’re wondering, especially if you’re already in a private school.

No matter how well you think you’re doing, you’re nowhere near your full potential.

Why? Because only Pear Tree Elementary teaches in a way that you could possibly reach your potential.


Why should you care?

The world is becoming increasingly harder to succeed in. Buying a house in Vancouver is a fantasy for most people now. It will be an impossibility for you when you’re an adult unless you know how to problem solve, collaboration, and put your learning into real-life contexts.

What is more, the Provincial Exams test math and reading in real-life contexts. Only Pear Tree teaches in this way, so if you want to do well on that Provincials, you should be running here right now. No seriously.

Ultimately, academic credentials won’t do it alone. You need to be more. You need to be your absolute best.


Why Do People Change School?

People change schools because they’re escaping something bad, or looking for something better, or a combination of the two.


What Don’t They Like About Their Previous School?

Some students change school because of what is missing from or wrong with their current school.

switching schools

Here are the most common reasons we hear from families that have applied to Pear Tree:


The most common thing we hear is how unhappy students were with their previous school’s teachers, which is always sad to hear.

At Pear Tree, we only hire classroom teachers with masters degrees in education, who are intelligent, motivated, talented and able to help you become your best self!

After all, if a teacher can’t practice what they preach, how can’t they help you?!

What is more, what you study at Pear Tree is co-planned by multiple masters-qualified teachers to ensure classes are amazing!


Learning Approach

Our theme-based, holistic learning approach is second to none.

Unless you come to Pear Tree, you’re almost certainly learning through a subject-based approach that uses textbooks, rote memorisation, worksheets, etc.

This simply isn’t effective or fun, is it?

And, it doesn’t matter if you’re attending a public or private school – the old school mentality prevails.

A Pear Tree, we don’t use textbooks. Everything is custom-designed by our teachers to ensure that what you do is meaningful, engaging and challenging.

Like I mentioned before, you’ll have wished you joined us years ago!


Excessive COVID Measures

Schools have implemented COVID measures in wildly different ways from each other! The most extreme measures have led to kids not being able to attend their school, or not being able to leave their desks without permission.

This not only detrimentally affects your learning, but also your mental health. Seriously.

As Pear Tree is a small school, we are able to have COVID measures that are easier for students to cope with. We provide some sense of normality in a crazy world.

Parents thank us.

Students thank us.

Staff thank us.

And, we thank the government for having sensible measures for schools like ours!



Bullying is another extremely common reason why students leave their old schools.

Bullying occurs because of poor school cultures, and a focus on policing bad behaviour rather than preventing it from occurring in the first place.

Our approach is self-policing by students. There are more of you than us. We teach you to do the right thing, and you help us help you.

At Pear Tree, we foster a positive sense of community. We teach everyone the importance of relationships and the impact of our actions. We learn not only how to be kind and what that even means, but also to stand up for ourselves and one another – the power of one and the power of many.

In the end, we don’t tolerate bullying. Period.


School (Potential) Closures

More recently, school closures are forcing families to change school.


Pear Tree prides itself on growing sensibly and using its funds efficiently. We don’t ask for or accept donations. Consequently, we can’t afford to gamble with our money. As educators who work very hard to earn what we earn, we spend tuition money on how it will best help our students and school community get better.


Why Do They Join Pear Tree?

When they come across Pear Tree Elementary, most parents and students become curious why other schools don’t offer what we offer, e.g. our progressive learning method, our amazing teachers, daily physical education, an inclusive healthy hot lunch program, goal-setting for every child, a digital portfolio system updated daily, and so on.

“You’d have to be crazy not to come here!” is something we hear!

switching schools

In many ways, this is the more ‘ideal’ circumstance, because rather than focusing on what they are escaping from, such families are joining Pear Tree because they appreciate what we do!

At Pear Tree, the smaller class sizes allow you to develop more meaningful relationships with your peers and your teachers.

Through theme-based learning, new concepts and ideas are taught in many different ways, so no matter their learning style, all students are able to grasp the material.

Students learn to work together toward a common goal, collaborating on projects, and compromising when needed.

Teachers are able to give each student more individualized attention, helping them reach their full potential.

progressive education works

The smaller school cohort creates a tight-knit group of motivated students. If you surround yourself with successful people, you are more likely to become successful yourself!

Our students are passionate about learning and are like-minded when it comes to personal growth. Students support each other as they discover who they are, gaining more confidence in themselves.

Being older students in our school, you serve as role models for the younger grades. You also have the opportunity to learn and develop important leadership and communication skills through the mixed grade classes and buddy systems. Effectively connecting with peers is a skill that will continue to benefit you well into your future career and life.

Entrepreneurial thinking is fostered from an early age at Pear Tree. Students are taught to analyze information and apply it to create something new. They use multiple perspectives, make real-life connections, and use hands-on approaches to solve issues.

switching school

What’s the Next Step?

If you still aren’t ready to apply, I would recommend signing up for an in-person private tour and/or open house for you and your parents, which you can do here.