IEP Supports & Accommodations
OHS is a school for gifted/talented & academically curious/motivated girls with supports for other selected IEP needs.
IEP Supports & Accommodations
We support and welcome gifted and academically curious girls who may or may not need supports for generalized/performance/perfectionism/test/math anxiety, mild/successfully managed depression, dyslexia, mild to moderate ADHD, and other learning disabilities (e.g. short-term memory).
We also welcome applications from girls without IEPs who have above average performance in one or more academic areas, who are demonstrate the ability to do well with our enriched curriculum, who are kind, and would be a positive member of our learning community.
Please Note: Odyssey Heights School for Girls/École pour filles Odyssey Heights is NOT a school for Troubled Teens. Students at OHS will not be in classes with girls with severe/untreated mental health issues, addictions, or those at risk of harming themselves or others. The safety of our community members is paramount. Girls who are at risk of harming themselves or others cannot be accepted at Odyssey Heights. All students must be academically and socially capable of being positive members of the learning community at Odyssey Heights. Aggressive, disruptive, or violent behaviours are not tolerated and will result in immediate suspension, most likely expulsion, and potentially legal consequences.
Please click here to learn more about what Odyssey Heights offers support and accommodations for and the attributes that successful applicants have, as well as the IEP needs that we don’t support,
Created to Serve the Needs of Students with IEPs.
Students with IEPs are why Odyssey Heights School for Girls was created. Our Director and Founding Principal, Ms. Elizabeth McCready has worked with students with IEPs in her professional Academic Coaching practice since 2001 and specializes in students with giftedness (including high performance athletes & pre-professional dancers), anxiety, depression, dyslexia & other learning disabilities (short-term memory, executive functioning), and ADHD.
She became increasingly frustrated with repeatedly seeing wonderful gifted and capable students mental health and self-esteem plummets from ‘falling through the cracks’, because their needs were not being understood or met at school, and their schools were not learning and/or social environments conducive to their positive mental & physical health.
Odyssey Heights is a school whose creation began with creating a positive, supportive, and enriched program, so teens with and without giftedness, anxiety, depression, ADHD, dyslexia and/or learning disabilities can be safe, inspired, and successful.
Admission is open to girls with and without giftedness, anxiety, depression, and/or dyslexia/LDs, and adhd.
Gifted & Talented
The structure and programs at Odyssey Heights are ideal for both gifted students, and gifted students with other IEP needs (anxiety, LD, ADHD,...). The Learning Communities that combine two grades ( 7&8, 9/10, 11/12) facilitate working at higher grade levels in one or more subjects, and provide leadership opportunities for girls to peer teach younger students (both often recommenced IEP accommodations for gifted students).
The flexible pacing of both online and blended learning courses allow gifted students to work ahead, or study topics they’re interested in in depth. A maximum in class student to teacher ratio of 10:1 means more individual attention for all students. With Ontario certified teachers for all online courses, even though Odyssey Heights is a small school, our students in all Ontario Secondary School Credit courses and a classroom teacher as an academic coach.
Gifted Pre-Professional Dancers and Athletes
Part-time and half day options allow busy pre- professional dancers and high level student athletes to complete their schooling and have a peers to work with, while having time to focus on their training.
For athletes and dancers that travel frequently, attending class via video conferencing can be discussed with the principal.
Anxiety & Depression
Daily exercise, sufficient sleep, and a healthy diet are key factors in alleviating the symptoms of anxiety and depression. The late start at 10:30 am allows girls to sleep more and to avoid the worst of the morning rush hour crowds. Our nature, adventure, and mindfulness physical education is specifically designed to support mental health.
Supports for students with anxiety and depression include: testing accommodations -
Small classes with a maximum of 10 students per class
Flexible course schedule.
Use of technology
Blended learning and online credit courses mean students don’t miss content when they miss school, and they can review.
a peaceful environment with quiet areas
daily mindfulness moments for every Odyssey Heights student
As our director and founding principal Ms. Elizabeth has overcome PTSD and panic disorder, (and has not had a panic attack in over 12 years), there is great support and empathy for girls with mental health needs, as well as a strong role model and advocate.
All teachers have Mental Health First Aid Certification.
Dyslexia & LDs
An IEP is developed and implemented before each student with dyslexia and/or learning disabilities starts at Odyssey Heights School. IEPs are created with input from families, the student, past teachers, medical professionals and recent psychoeducational assessment. Ongoing and open dialog with families, the principal, medical and support professionals, and the student helps adjust to changing needs.
Odyssey Heights is a 1:1 iPad with keyboard & Apple Pencil school. All Apple devices have text-to-speech and speech-to-text as part of iOS and MacOS. For students with dyslexia, reading materials can easily be converted to “Dyslexie” font - a special font created by and and for people with dyslexia that aids in reading text.
The blended learning environment for grades 7 & 8 uses multiple learning styles, and with the rare exception, all materials posted in students’ Canvas accounts are in accessible screenreader ready OCR format.
For grades 9-12, as all the credit courses are online, students can work at their own pace, and materials are in accessible formats.
The schedule and very physically active program at Odyssey Heights are ideal for girls with ADHD as exercise helps regulate brain function. An IEP is developed and implemented before each student with ADHD starts at Odyssey Heights School. IEPs are created with input from families, the student, past teachers, medical professionals and recent psychoeducational assessment. Ongoing and open dialog with families, the principal, medical and support professionals, and the student helps adjust to changing needs
The blended learning environment for grades 7 & 8 uses multiple learning styles. For grades 9-12, as all the credit courses are online, students can work at their own pace, and materials are in accessible formats. With almost all material being posted on the students’ Canvas class accounts, girls who miss concepts because of their ADHD can “rewind the teacher.”