Columbia International College


Canada’s Largest Boarding School

Since 1979, under our unique Total Care Education System®, Columbia International College has offered peace of mind for parents and success for students. Columbia currently welcomes 1800 students from 73 countries and has a faculty of over 450 teachers and support staff, and proudly bears the status of Canada’s largest and most successful boarding school.

Total Care Education System®

Total Care Education® fosters the whole child by providing:

  • Exceptional academic instruction in:
    - Junior Middle School (Grades 7 - 8)

- Senior High School (Grades 9 -12)

- Fast track Pre-University program

  • Classes that cultivate critical thinking, analytical skills, and cooperation with others
  • Global Citizen program that emphasizes Character Development
  • Leadership Development program at the Bark Lake Leadership Centre, our privately owned 700 acre (283 hectare) facility
      • Residence program in all five school residences (separated for boys and girls) offers:

- Tutorial and homework assistance

- Weekday and weekend programming

- Age-tailored routines to independence

#1 in admissions to top universities

According to university reports, Columbia graduates are accepted to:

  • the University of Waterloo, and
  • the University of Toronto,

more than any other school worldwide, many with scholarships.


In 2016, $3.7 million (CAD) in university admission scholarships was awarded to Columbia graduates; 141 graduates were accepted to the University of Waterloo and 396 to the University of Toronto.

Total Care Education System®

Our approach to international education maximizes student potential by meeting their academic, social, emotional and physical needs. To best address their needs, we built the Total Care Education System® using four components:

Total Care Learning®:

Focuses on nurturing students through classes that teach critical thinking, inquiry, collaboration, writing and presentation skills.

  • Extensive academic support, with qualified tutors available in school and residences
  • Study groups hosted by teachers and peers, with support for gifted students
  • Teachers and tutors tap into student interests to provide better support
  • Blended learning for today's digital natives, with class material made available online the night before
  • Learning available anytime, anywhere

Total Care Living®:

Creates a safe & stress-free living experience for students, with extensive security, personal support services, and nutritious meals.

  • Separate residences for boys & girls
  • Campus Security Staff at all buildings with 24/7 video-monitored security system
  • Houseparents & Hall masters for personal support
  • Weekly room cleaning
  • Bus service between school and residences
  • Residence and Meal Service open 365 days a year
  • Up to 4 meals a day, with all-you-care-to-eat dinners & brunches
  • Menus designed by qualified dieticians, with special diet options and religious meals

Total Care Development®:


Keys to Character

• Academics, extracurricular, and residence activities all contribute to fostering character development according to eleven qualities identified by students.

Acquiring Life Skills

• Experiential learning through events, clubs, sports, and community service

• Students develop communication, teamwork, time management, and planning skills.

Leadership training

• Bark Lake Leadership Centre—our own 700-acre outdoor education facility

• The Duke of Edinburgh Award Program fosters independence and personal growth

Total Care Communication®:


Liaison Staff by geographic region

• Single point of contact for parents and students for different school departments, translation services, and guidance around school policies

ezReport Card

• Online record of academic and social performance, easily accessible by parents around the world

Stay connected

• In-room telephone extension with voicemail • Free WiFi access in residence and at school

• Wired internet in bedroom


We believe that international students need priority attention to adjust to a new environment.

We created the Total Care Education System® to address the specific needs of international students. It provides the highest quality care and enables academic excellence.

When they go abroad to study, children are at a critical developmental stage. They have unique academic, social, emotional, and physical needs. We designed the Total Care Education System® as a holistic system, one capable of providing for the ASEP needs of international students.

The four pillars of Total Care Education® work together to unlock each student’s potential.

Total Care LEARNING®

Total Care Learning® prepares students to succeed in the North American education system. From day one, our team of experienced educators assess each student’s ASEP needs and design a customized education plan to meet these needs and foster their success.

Total Care LIVING®

Total Care Living® offers our students a home away from home by providing age-appropriate guidance. Students stay in a safe and comfortable environment where they learn to adapt to North American customs and lifestyle. This independent living encourages them to think independently, make the right choices, and stay focused in order to achieve total success.


Total Care Development® ensures each student receives a well-balanced education by providing opportunities outside the classroom for students to explore their strengths and build strong Character. As a result, they develop solid ASEP foundations needed to achieve academic excellence and a successful career.


Total Care Communication® bridges the distance between students and parents. It minimizes this distance by providing modern communication systems that help parents and students stay emotionally connected and support their ASEP needs.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

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