The Provincial Demonstration Schools provide educational programs for approximately 120 students. Students come to the programs significantly underachieving in some or all of the academic areas. Poor reading, writing, spelling and mathematics skills are common; many students also have immature social skills. Nevertheless, all students have average to above average potential. In addition they display some, or all, of the following characteristics:
- Difficulty with receptive and expressive language
- Poor sequencing, discrimination, coordination, organizational and spatial skills
- Auditory and/or visual memory problems
- Focusing difficulties
Specialized programming is provided for students with severe language learning disabilities and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
The length of stay at a Provincial Demonstration School is up to one year in highly specialized programs. School hours are consistent with the regulations for school boards. However, adjustments are made to ensure that students are able to return home on Friday and remain at home as long as possible on the weekend (in many cases until Monday morning). Provincial Demonstration Schools are designed to serve as a resource to school boards, rather than to function as a separate education system. As soon as possible, every effort is made to facilitate the student’s return to an appropriate program in his/her local community. Transition plans are prepared and follow-up is provided for students when they return to their home schools.