Lord Strathcona Community School is Vancouver's oldest elementary school as it was founded in 1891. Strathcona has a population of over 500 students who attend school in beautiful heritage buildings. Strathcona is located near the heart of Chinatown and has a rich cultural history and a diverse population. This diversity adds greatly to the multicultural nature of our school community. Strathcona is part of the Inner City School Program, a program that was created to meet the needs of learners and families in the Downtown East Side. Some positive features of being a member of the Inner City School are: All Day Kindergarten for students and a lunch program. Strathcona is also a Community School with links to the community centre on site. This relationship allows us to provide Before- and After-School Care Programs as well as a Breakfast Program in the morning. There is a tremendous sense of 'community' in our neighbourhood. Strathcona is committed to student academic achievement, athletics, the fine arts, parent involvement and the creation of a safe school environment. We have outstanding athletic programs and Strathcona fields teams in Cross-Country, Soccer, Volleyball, Basketball, Flag Football and Track and Field. We have a superb Primary and Intermediate Music Program with trained and very experienced teachers. We have a Vancouver Public Library inside the school which supports our Literacy initiatives and a Dental Clinic attached to the Community Centre. Our ongoing relationship with the Strathcona Community Centre allows us to build strong recreational and educational programs for our students and their families. We have a dedicated Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) who meet regularly and who value and encourage parental input and dialogue. Our PAC meetings are provided in both English and Chinese and we look forward to sharing information with our parent partners. Our Neighbourhood Assistant is available to translate for parents and is an invaluable resource and link to our community. Strathcona has a dedicated and committed and stable staff who provide an academically and socially rich environment for our students. Their focus is always on meeting the needs of our students. Strathcona has a long standing reputation as a school that develops and highlights the many talents and strengths of our students. Our teachers collaborate to develop strong academic programs balanced with specialty teaching in the fine arts and athletics. All of our programs accommodate our English as an Additional Language, English as a second Dialeect populations and the integration of special needs students. We are committed to meeting the needs of all of our student learners. We are very proud of our school and school learning community.
District Programs The school houses K -4 French Immersion, an Intermediate Special Remedial Class for students requiring a smaller supported class setting to support behaviour. 12 children work with a teacher, a youth and family worker and an alternative program worker in each classroom. The goal of the programs is to prepare the children for re-entry into their home school. By addressing the children's educational, behavioural and emotional issues, the classes looks to equip the students with skills that they can take with them back into the typical classroom in able to successfully cope and learn in a classroom environment. Calendar and Schedule Strathcona School conforms to the standard VSB calendar and our calendar for the year is published by the end of May. Recess is from 10:30 to 10:45 a.m. and lunch break is from 12:15 - 1:00 p.m. Clubs and Extra-curricular Every year Strathcona has a wide variety of clubs and teams which are offered to students. Examples from this year include cross-country, flag football, chess club, volleyball, basketball, floor hockey, Junior and Senior choirs, recorder ensemble, gardening, recycling, Junior and Senior Hip Hop, track and field, and ice hockey. Student Leadership Opportunity Students at Strathcona have a variety of opportunities to participate in groups which work together to make our school a safer and more fun place to be. Our Leadership Club creates dramas to teach students about safety and our schools' code of conduct. They often lead our school events and assemblies, and they take part in community initiatives. We also have an active student council who work on school improvement projects and special events.
Strathcona is located at 592 East Pender Street in East Vancouver, an area which is at the hub of Vancouver's Historic Chinatown. Strathcona is the oldest residential district in Vancouver. It started out as a bunch of shacks and cottages around the Hastings Mill and moving away from the mill, it eventually developed into a residential area. It was first known as the East End. The symbolism behind the name "East End" was due to its mixture of housing and industry, and its large entrance of immigrants. They started using the name "Strathcona" after the 1950s and the area consisted of everything east of Main to Campbell and from the Burrard Inlet to False Creek. During that time, False Creek was four times its present size. Today, Strathcona is bounded by Hastings, Campbell, Gore, Atlantic and Prior streets. It has everything that makes up a successful community. It has a varied pattern of development and most importantly, a great number of corner grocery stores providing day to day needs for residents. Strathcona has a mixture of commercial and residential areas. Architecture accounts for a good deal of Strathconas charm and some of Vancouver's oldest and most unique buildings.
Strathcona is Vancouver's oldest elementary school -- it was built in 1891. Strathcona is an outgrowth of the city's first two schools, the Hastings' Mill and the Oppenheimer Street School. It was nicknamed "League of the Nations" in the 1930s and described as the most cosmopolitan school in the world. Diversity, industry, and courage were words that best described Strathcona. The early residents were the English, Scots, and Irish, however, once this group left, the district became an immigrant basin catching and holding an influx of newcomers. A complete list of immigrants included Japanese, Chinese, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Jewish, African, Central American, Italian, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Belgian, Russian, Polish, Ukrainian, Hungarian, Croatian, Romanian, Czech, Slovak, Turkish, Albanian, Serbian, Scottish, English, Irish and American. The major cultural groups at Strathcona were Chinese, Japanese, Italian and Jewish. The latest wave of immigrants was in the 1970s with the Vietnamese. Between 1922 and 1942, the enrolment figures reflected the rich cultural and racial mosaic which gave rise to the name "The School of Many Nationalities but Only One Flag." In the earlier days, staff members recognized that children of immigrants had not developed the English skills. But the best the school could do was place immigrant children in regular classrooms and they learned by "osmosis." With older children, particularly teenagers, they were placed in grade 1 and 2 classes. The younger children learned English very well, but it was very embarrassing for the teens. To make things more difficult, classes were really big, with a high of 50 students per class. It was not until the late 40s that special provision was made for second language instruction. The school shared its experiences with other schools and a brochure on "oral method" of teaching English. At the same time, universities began to explore the area of second language development.
1891 - School opens and is named East School
1900 - Name changed to Lord Strathcona Elementary
1915 - North end of Senior Building is built.
1920 - East School is demolished and the bricks were used to build the present Primary Building.
1930 - South end of Senior building and Auditorium are completed.
1937 - Strathcona becomes one of Vancouver's largest school with a population of 1458 (half of which were of Japanese decsent)
1942 (Spring) - Zero Japanese students at Strathcona compared to 630 in Dec. 1941 due to War Measures Act.
1945 - Approximately 50 Japanese families returned to Strathcona
As a community school, Strathcona has developed a strong relationship with our on-site Community Centre. We collaborate with the Community Centre to develop lunch hour, after school and school holiday programs. The on-site daycare run by the Community Centre allows for safe, convenient, before and after school care for our students. As a designated Inner City school, Strathcona offers a hot breakfast and lunch program to meet the needs of our community. We also have an on-site dental clinic which serves the needs of children in our community and those of neighbouring schools as well. The Vancouver Public Library and our school library operate as a joint operation and allows us to offer greater material and human resources to our students. Our staff participates in the district Early and Intermediate Literacy projects. We are working together to improve our practice so our students will achieve greater gains in their reading and writing abilities. Strathcona has a strong counseling team that includes a Family Advancement Worker, Youth and Family Workers, a First Nations' Worker and an Area Counselor. This team works together to teach children social skills and to promote safety in their lives. Parent involvement is welcomed at Strathcona. Parent Advisory Council meetings are conducted in both English and Cantonese and our Cantonese and Mandarin speaking Neighbourhood Worker offers workshops, translations and assistance to all parents. Strathcona honours our multicultural population and the strong links to the Chinese Community. Each year we have a Multicultural Festival during which time all our children have the opportunity to explore the various cultural traditions which make up our school population. Over the past few years, Strathcona has successfully pursued a greening project that boasts an after school environmental and recycling club, and a school garden. Strathcona has well developed fine arts programs, which include choirs, recorder group and an emphasis on students' art. Strathcona staff provide our students with many opportunities to participate in a wide variety of sports.