Picture of Barclay School Sign

The Barclay School: A School as Unique as your Child

Story by: Dr. Gillian Barclay-Smith Head and Founder

As The Barclay School celebrates its tenth year, we are happy to announce that we have found our “forever home” at 1364 Cook Road in Ridgeway. We are a small, non-profit, private day school for K-12 students who learn differently. We specialize in helping struggling students with a broad spectrum of issues: focussing and ADHD; difficulty with reading, writing and math; anxiety; issues surrounding high functioning autism; develmetal delay. From day one, we seek to find out everything the students CAN do, as well as helping them in their areas of difficulty. Please ponder that for a while, and put yourself in the student’s shoes: in the “real world” would you apply for a job that requires you to work in your weakest area? Not only would you not do that, but you would probably quit your job and look for a new one if the struggle got too great. Students can’t quit or walk away, but they can and do shut down, suffering low self esteem and depression. By celebrating their strengths, many of our students experience success for the first time. They no longer see themselves as “ that child who can’t read,” but as “ that child who is really good at drama.” For many of our students, this new approach is empowering and transformational. We also focus on the students as whole human beings. We work with them academically, but teach emotional and social skills, as well .This is integrated into everything we do; not simply taught in isolation. At our school, kindness and caring are taught alongside math and science. To that end, some of our students help with Meals on Wheels and go on weekly visits to a local retirement home. We enjoy participating and helping whenever we can in the community, and have volunteered at Ridgeway’s Arts on the Ridge, Pig on the Ridge, and decorated twenty pumpkins that were displayed on Ridgeway’s main street. Most of our students have experienced bullying or being excluded, simply because they are different. We are proud to have “no bullying” as the most important rule we live by every day. We value each person and celebrate their contribution to our learning community. Because our students learn differently, our job is to teach them differently. Our specialized staff allow students to move forward, at their own pace and at their own level. We do not administer timed tests (most of our students simply do not test well), nor assign homework. Instead, the students work on individual projects, often chosen by them, which they then share with the whole group. As well as all the traditional subjects of math, language arts, science and social studies, our students take art, music, pottery, drama and gardening.They also learn to take responsibility and care of our school bunny, cat, dog and chickens! If you think that your child would benefit from our individualized, hands-on approach, please call Susan (803)-629-6318. We are open Monday through Friday from 9am – 3pm. Our website is www. thebarclayschool.org, and please visit our facebook page: The Barclay School at Ridgeway. We accept students yearround. Some tuition assistance is available.