Whether you are coming to Western NS with your children or if you are planning to study yourself, this section includes important information that will help you access all the available resources.
It is important to keep in mind that any person between the age of 5 and 21 is eligible to attend school in Nova Scotia for free. For children between the age of 5 and 16 are required to attend school, whether they choose public or private institutions.
Within the Western Region, there are many elementary and high schools. Schools are administered by the two bodies listed below. Please visit their sites for more information on individual schools within the region.
- Tri-County Regional Centre for Education
- The Tri County Regional Centre for Education covers all English schools in Digby, Yarmouth, and Shelburne counties.
- The Conseil Scolaire Acadian Provincial
- The Conseil Scolaire Acadian Provincial (CSAP) is the only French-language school board in Nova Scotia. Students whose parents speak French as a first language or who attended a French elementary school can attend CSAP schools. Students with neither English nor French as a first language can also participate in CSAP schools. Please check out their website to find a CSAP school in your area.
- Tri-County Regional Centre for Education
All schools in the Western Region have support and opportunities available to address differences in learning for students with a wide range of special needs. Service is provided to the schools on a “needs” basis, within available resources, and can be discussed directly with the schools.
Nova Scotia offers a pre-primary program in English and French that is free, universal play-based pre-primary education for four-year-olds. This program is to help them transition more easily to primary the following year. To find a pre-primary program in your area, please check out the following sites: for English schools https://www.tcrce.ca/pre-primary/, for French schools https://csap.ca/familles/grandir-en-francais.
Nova Scotia is proud to offer elementary education as a fully immersed French language experience. However, we recognize that may only be the ideal option for some families. There are many options throughout the school systems for those who still want their children to learn and engage with the French language. Core French is a compulsory course for all Nova Scotia students from Grades 4 to 9. There are other French programs, including Intensive French, an alternative to core French that involves concentrated learning time spent in French for five months of the year. Early immersion starts in grade primary and includes approximately 80% of learning time in French, and late immersion starts in Grade 7 with about 70% of learning time in French. To find out more information about these programs and which schools they are offered at, please check out their website https://www.tcrce.ca/french-programming/.
Post Secondary Education
- Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC)
- Nova Scotia has one province-wide community college called Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC). NSCC has locations in Yarmouth, Digby and Shelburne that offer full-time programs and continuing education opportunities. To learn more about what programs are offered at NSCC in the Western Region, head to https://www.nscc.ca/programs-and-courses/programs/programlisting.aspx?camp=BURRI&cat=&grp=&k=
- Université Sainte-Anne
- Université Sainte-Anne is the only French-language university in the province of Nova Scotia with the main campus located in Church Point as well as a satellite campus located in Tusket. The school offers many university-level programs as well as college-level diploma programs. They also offer a wide range of French as a Second Language programs. To learn more about what programs Université Sainte-Anne offers, head to https://www.usainteanne.ca/en/programs
We understand that everyone’s situation moving here may be unique, and you may be looking for opportunities to upgrade your previous education, gain education or enhance specific skills. Here in the Western Region, these organizations can help you achieve those goals.
- Yarmouth County Learning Network is a community organization that provides free upgrading opportunities to adults in Yarmouth, NS. Their programs include reading, writing, and math skills for adults so they can achieve their high school diploma or GED. Whether you’re looking to better your reading and writing skills or get your high school diploma, the Yarmouth County Learning Network can help you build a personalized program to help you achieve your goal!
- Digby Area Learning Association (DALA) is an organization that has a variety of Adult Learning Programs. Adult learners aged 19 and above can enroll when it’s convenient for them, and enrolment can be part-time or full-time. Learners can take advantage of free learning opportunities to help them reach their goals.
- Shelburne Learning County Network is an organization that aims to be a resource by providing programming, information, and direction for literacy and essential skills in Shelburne County. They will work with you to identify your individual needs and partner with community organizations to assist learners in achieving their goals. The Shelburne Learning County Network offers in-person classes daily and night, online learning, blended learning, and package pick-up. There are lots of options, and they offer flexibility that will suit your schedule.
The Western Counties Regional Libraries offer all Nova Scotian residents free membership. Children under 14 do need to have signed parental consent for a membership card. You can apply for a card at any of the Western Counties’ 10 branches throughout the region or use their online registration form. Being a library member means you can borrow unlimited books or magazines from any of the branches, loan periods are three weeks and there are no restrictions on borrowing. The library does offer free access to the internet and computers for members. They are excellent resources and provide programming for families and individuals. To see what branch is closest to you and to check out the library, head to https://westerncounties.ca/
- The Western Counties Libraries have English Second Language (ESL) learning and a free app/ online resource called Rocket Languages that allows you to learn a new language at your own pace. For more information on their language learning, check out https://westerncounties.ca/
- Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS): ISANS Language Services help you build the confidence, skills, and knowledge you need to converse in English. Their team works with you to identify your unique needs and offers support tailored to your settlement goals. ISANS offers English Language learning, English for everyday living, and English for work and business. To learn more visit https://isans.ca/learn-english/