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About Us

Nootka Elementary School, positioned within the residential Renfrew-Collingwood district on the east side of Vancouver, gratefully acknowledges with deep gratitude and respect, we are honoured to be learning and unlearning on the ancestral and unceded lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) & səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation). The school, bordered by Renfrew Community Centre, Still Creek, and the Renfrew Ravine, integrates a commitment to place-based learning, and surrounds the school with accessible recreational opportunities and green spaces for learning.

The student body at Nootka reflects the rich cultural diversity of our community, comprising families identifying with Indigenous and settler cultures, both from within Canada and globally. Enthusiastic students, from diverse cultural backgrounds, arrive at school eager to learn. Students reside in neighborhoods throughout the city, bringing a diverse array of experiences and needs to school every day. In the academic year 2023-2024, we are serving nearly 400 students across 18 divisions.

Nootka offers three distinct educational programs at Nootka: the Classic Program, a K-7 catchment program; the District Fine Arts Program, a K-7 program emphasizing Fine Arts; and the District Elementary Learning Support Program (ELSP), designed for students in grades 4-7. At Nootka, all students are fortunate to receive music education under the expert guidance of two specialized music teachers. The dedicated staff of approximately 60 individuals collaboratively work under the leadership of a principal and a vice principal to provide a supportive, inclusive, and equitable learning environment for every student. Staff regularly participate in various Professional Development opportunities, recently centred around Indigenous Education and anti-racism.

The Nootka Fine Arts Program (K-7) is a district choice program offered by the Vancouver School District. This program places an emphasis on the four Fine Arts domains: Visual Arts, Dance, Drama, and Music. The program focuses on fostering skill development through the arts, encouraging collaboration, problem-solving, and communication among students. Further enriching the curriculum, Nootka offers electives for students in grades 4-7, providing them with a comprehensive and immersive fine arts education experience. Last year, intermediate students and staff put out a musical theatre production of Annie Jr. that ran 8 sold out shows and a student written and directed comedic play.

Nootka students and staff have the assistance of a shared Youth and Family worker and an Area Counsellor. These individuals enhance the social and emotional well-being of students by orchestrating extracurricular activities, fostering social-emotional learning in classrooms and small group environments, and liaising with our Windermere Community Schools Team Coordinator. Nootka also houses a before and after school care program through Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House. They offer programming for students between 7:30 and 9:00 am, and 3:00 and 5:30 pm. This provides childcare support for working families and caregivers in the school community.

Nootka's unique architectural design, shaped like a horseshoe, encloses a central courtyard and playground. The school's single-level design ensures comprehensive accessibility, accommodating all mobility requirements. Our premises boast a Library Learning Commons, a dance/activity studio, a drama room, a FuturePLAY room, and a gym with a stage. The outdoor spaces include playing fields, raised garden beds, playground equipment, a rock garden exploration area, and musical instruments, fostering a diverse range of indoor and outdoor inquiry experiences that enhance learning and cultivate opportunities for success.

In alignment with the district’s Indigenous Enhancement Agreement, we to aim to infuse Indigenous content into all curriculum areas across all grades. High expectations are set for students, and teaching teams employ many different strategies to help foster a growth mindset to ensure student success. Teachers participate in an Equity & Access through Story Workshop inquiry project, and many teachers explore Universal Designs for Learning using centres and stations available in the dedicated Inquiry Space. Our comprehensive Student Code of Conduct outlines behaviour expectations and emphasizes the school philosophy of restorative action to repair harm resulting from behaviour contrary to the code.

Nootka highly values student advocacy, promoting participation in various leadership initiatives, including Library Monitors, Crossing Guards, Rainbow Club, Peer Helpers, Nootka BRAVE Committee, and Lunch Monitors. We also offer Textiles Club, Games Club, Scrapbooking Club and multiple team sports throughout the year. The school mission is to foster a community of engaged, enthusiastic learners, ready to work with others to contribute positively to the world.

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