Why Choose the Nelson Waldorf School

Class 6The Nelson Waldorf School is perfect for students learning English.

BEAUTIFUL, CLEAN, SAFE, FRIENDLY TOWN – Nelson is a friendly town nestled between mountains with crystal clear air, lakes and parks! Look for more information here: www.nelsonkootenaylake.com

SOCIAL INCLUSION – At the Nelson Waldorf School students of all cultures and interests are welcomed. The Code of Compassion, created by the students themselves, is one tool of the Social Inclusion approach living in our school. The Code is found in our classrooms and hallways and reflects a school-wide dedication to upholding a climate of trust that is conducive to learning.

ORAL BASED LEARNING – students at the Nelson Waldorf School have lessons presented orally by the teacher and therefore have a greater opportunity to practice learning to understand the spoken word.

ENGLISH SUPPORT – ELL tutoring will be required for students who are learning English as a second language. Tutoring is to be arranged privately, and is estimated at a cost of $35/hr, usually 2 hours per week. Tutoring is designed to help support students with English and integrate them into the school and community as quickly as possible. Tutoring fees are in addition to homestay and tuition fees.

MATH ENRICHMENT – many international students have strong math skills. The math presented in class will be easy for the students to grasp, and they will quickly learn to use the English vocabulary. For students staying the full year, once they are confident with using English in the math classes, enrichment math will be an option.

RECORDER TUTORING – at the Nelson Waldorf School, all students play the recorder. Any international students who can read music will be able to learn to play the recorder with minimal support. For students who have never read music, extra tutoring fees will apply.

ARTISTIC APPROACH – the classes are rich in artistic and creative activity. Learning English, as the students learn to draw, paint, do woodwork and handwork projects is exciting!

Helpful Information About The Nelson Waldorf School

High Quality Art SuppliesSCHOOL SUPPLIES:   Our students are given the highest quality school supplies from Mercurius/ Stockmar in Germany. This is why there is a supply fee of

  • Kindergarten:  $300
  • Classes 1, 2, 3: $435
  • Classes 4, 5:     $460
  • Classes 6, 7, 8: $560

The students draw with beeswax crayons and Stockmar coloured pencils, use fountain pens to write, learn calligraphy in class 6, and paint with beautiful translucent colours.

RECORDERS:  Students in Classes 1-8 play the recorder. By Class 6 the students are playing 3 and 4 part music using the Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Bass Recorders. Students who stay for the full year will receive a beautiful wooden soprano recorder which they will take home with them. Music Class

DRESS CODE:  At the Nelson Waldorf School we ask the students to dress neatly in non-distracting clothing. Our dress code states that students should wear plain coloured tops, or tops with a small design or pattern. Any Logos, letters or images are to be the student’s fist size or smaller. They will also require Non-marking running shoes that lace up snugly (no loose-fitting skate shoes) for inside the classroom and for gym class. Winter coats, snow pants, warm boots, hats, and mitts are a must in the winter.

MEDIA:  The Nelson Waldorf School asks that students have limited exposure to media. This includes computer use, watching television, electronic games and using phones for entertainment.

OVERNIGHT CLASS TRIPS:  Classes 3-8 go on one or more overnight trips each year. Most trips are for two nights. Class 3 goes to a farm, Class 4 goes to Fort Steele (a pioneer village), Class 5 attends the Waldorf Olympics, Class 6 backpacks into a wilderness cabin in the fall, and goes on a bike trip in the spring. Class 7 goes to a Challenge course in the fall and to a rock climbing camp in the spring. Class 8 participates in a high ropes course in the fall, goes snow caving in the winter, and goes on a 5-day trip in the spring. There is an additional cost for all overnight trips.

CLASS PLAYS:  Every class at the Nelson Waldorf School performs a play for the rest of the school at some time during the year.  If your child is involved in a class play we will send you pictures.

Pulpit Rock, KootenaysTuition, Fees, Homestay

Application Fee: $350 (one-time only fee to be included with the application)

Tuition: $13,000 per year ($1300/month):

Full Year Tuition includes:

  • courses for one full school year completely in English with native BC students
  • report cards
  • recorder tutoring
  • certificate of completion, guardianship, custodianship

Medical Fee: $100/month

Maintenance Fee: $50/month

Homestay Accommodation Fee: $850/month

Homestay fee includes:

  • private room
  • three meals per day, snacks, and drinks
  • airport arrival pick up and departure from the program
  • social, emotional support and problem solving
  • weekly check-ins at school
  • monthly support visits from the homestay coordinator

ELL Tutoring

ELL tutoring will be required for students who are learning English as a second language. Tutoring is to be arranged privately, and is estimated at a cost of $35/hr, usually 2 hours per week. Tutoring is designed to help support students with English and integrate them into the school and community as quickly as possible. Tutoring fees are in addition to homestay and tuition fees.

Starting Dates are flexible throughout the year

How to Enroll/Apply

Application Process

  1. Download and print out a copy of this application form.
  2. Fill out the application
  3. Include all necessary documents such as report cards from the previous 2 years of schooling, letter of intent from the student, and letter of reference from a school principal, counselor or teacher on behalf of the student.
  4. Send application form with $250 processing fee by express courier to:

The Nelson Waldorf School

Box 165

Nelson British Columbia

Canada V1L 5P9

Once the application form is received and reviewed, a letter of acceptance and a letter of custodianship will be sent to you so that an application for a study permit can be made through the Canadian Embassy or VAC center in your country.

What kind of students qualify for our program?

To qualify for our program, an international applicant requires average to above average marks on academic report cards and must also have positive comments from teachers on his/her overall character and work ethic. Once the student is settled with his/her homestay family the Program Coordinator will meet to welcome the student, answer questions and ensure the student understands the home and school expectations and responsibilities while he/she is enrolled in our program.


Nelson Waldorf School International Student Home Stay Program

The Nelson Waldorf School has a small international student home stay program which places students in classes 3-8. The program coordinator receives and reviews the international student profiles, and after consulting with the teacher(s) involved and the Pedagogical Administrator recommends a placement for the student in the most appropriate class. The coordinator also finds the home stay families and places the student in the family that is the best fit. The coordinator teaches at the school and therefore can check in with the students on a daily basis to support the student, and checks in with the home stay families on a regular basis. Any tutoring will be done by the coordinator. The program coordinator is the legal guardian of all the international students at the school.

Student Orientation Procedures

  • The home stay coordinator and the host parent meet the student at the Castlegar or Trail airport.
  • The coordinator checks in with the student once they arrive at school, and at least every other week at school. The student is told they can come to the coordinator any time at school and they can phone the coordinator at home at any time.
  • The student is given the “Homestay Family Standard Guidelines”
  • The student is given a card with their home stay address and phone number(s) and the name and phone number of the coordinator. On the back is the BC Children’s Helpline (310-1234) and 911 for fire and ambulance.


Host Family Screening and Orientation Process

  • All host families have children attending the Nelson Waldorf School.
  • The coordinator visits the home and checks that it is an inviting, safe home for a student to live in.
  • The bedroom for the student is inspected to ensure it is safe and clean. The room will have a bed, dresser, desk (for younger students the table may be used for any homework), lamp, window and door.
  • The host family fills in a “Homestay Host Application” and signs a “Homestay Program agreement.”
  • A criminal record check is done on any members of the household who are 18 years of age or older.
  • The finances are explained to the family: The family will receive $850 a month to cover food and utilities. They will receive a cheque near the beginning of the month. If the family goes out for dinner, the host family will pay. All other activities such as going to the pool, skiing, or joining an activity such as soccer or dance will be paid for by the student.
  • The international student is considered to be a member of the family.
  • The use of phones, computers and any media is at the discretion of the host family. The rules that apply to the host siblings will apply to the international student. Often there is no media in the Waldorf homes.
  • The student may contact their family in the home country as often as they like (within reason) at times that work for both the host family and the student’s family. This may be via the student’s phone or skype if the host family has this available. If a land line is used the student will use a long distance card.

The Nelson Waldorf School follows the British Columbia K-12 International Student Homestay Guidelines from the ministry of education – 2018 as listed below, with notes regarding the Nelson Waldorf School in red.


Homestay Program Provider Responsibilities

To promote the best possible homestay experience for international students at NWS, homestay program providers should:

  1. Maintain a homestay screening process for host families and for international students to determine suitability.
  2. The host family screening process should be published and should include:
    • Scheduled home inspections and host parent interviews;
    • Scheduled criminal records check for all adult household members;
    • Reference checks for the host family parent(s) where required.
  3. Gather appropriate and up-to-date personal records/contact information for the student, parent/guardian, custodian and/or host family, including: a. Legal first and last names (i.e. as they appear in a passport); b. Gender; c. Age; d. Relevant medical information; e. Country of residence; f. Address; and g. Contact phone number and email address. Ensure that all data collected and any information distributed by the homestay program provider complies with protection of privacy legislation.
  4. Develop and deliver a comprehensive training program for new host families to ensure familiarity and understanding with best practices and develop a process for regular host families to stay current with best practice.
  5. Place no more than two international students with a host family at the same time.
  6. Avoid concurrently placing both adult and minor international students in the same home.
  7. Inform the host family of potential student placements by using a standardized student profile form that includes the dates of accommodation, special requirements, and relevant medical and behavioral background.
  8. Liaise with the student, school, host family and parents/guardian and provide each with support.
  9. Communicate with international students and host families on a regular basis.
  10. Implement and maintain quality assurance and program evaluation mechanisms.
  11. Provide 24-hour emergency contact for international students and homestay families.
  12. Offer conflict resolution services (and the opportunity to reach consensus) to both the host family and the international student.
  13. Maintain clear, published standards and procedures relating to homestay, including procedures for the dismissal of host families in warranted cases and procedures for transferring students to a different host family. The NWS program coordinator works daily as needed with the families to decide if the placement is a fit.
  14. Develop separate reference manuals for host families and for international students (and their parents) that describe relevant legislation, standards and procedures. Manuals should contain standards and procedures applicable to the full range of a host family’s and an international student’s homestay experience. At NWS the program coordinator works with the host families, international students and international student  families to explain the program, support a smooth transition, and answer all questions as they arise.
  15. Maintain clear, published fee information including: a. Terms of Agreement – payment of fees to whom and when; b. Per diem and monthly homestay fees; c. Services included with fees; d. Additional fees (e.g. airport pick-up or drop- off or storage fees); and e. Refund policy. This is stated on the web site for the international families, and in the homestay agreement for the host families.
  16. Provide, as appropriate, the international student with access to a person who can speak the student’s primary language. The agent is always available to the student by phone. The agent speaks the student’s native language.
  17. Share medical or mental health concerns that arise during the course of the homestay with the international student program, the host family, the custodian or the student’s parent/guardian(s) as appropriate.
  18. Provide additional standards and procedural supports and requirements for younger homestay students as appropriate.
  19. Publish the homestay program provider’s legal limitations.
  20. Inform international students who are about to be placed with a host family about the BC Children’s Helpline (310-1234), which operates twenty-four hours a day, year round, and may be called in cases where the international student feels he/she is being mistreated or unsafe in the home or at school.


International Student Program Responsibilities

  1. Identify the custodian, appointed by the parent/guardian, who is responsible for the care of each international student. The international student program should articulate its expectations of a custodian.
  2. Develop clear procedures for host family parents in connecting with their international student’s school. Host family involvement with ESL, attendance, and extra-curricular activities will promote “school connectedness” and support student learning and success.
  3. Develop procedures and templates for communicating with the parent/guardian and custodian.
  4. Support host families with conflict resolution procedures and processes to resolve the variety of issues that may arise during the homestay. A clear outline of when and who to contact should additional support be required is highly recommended.
  5. Encourage homestay families to be specific and thoughtful regarding the Code of Conduct. Considerations such as curfew, internet use, chores, etc. should be clearly outlined and communicated to the student. Ensuring that all responsibilities are developmentally appropriate and suitable within the context of the home is important.
  6. Provide host families with a variety of resources to support their international student in acquiring English as an additional language.
  7. Publish the international student program’s legal limitations.
  8. Develop a participation agreement with the student and parent/guardian that includes expectations of student behavior, conflict resolution processes and grounds for dismissal from homestay and/or the school/district program. The International Student Program is the administrative group or unit within a school district or independent school that arranges for and supports international students while they are studying in a BC K-12 school.


Host Family Responsibilities

To promote the best possible homestay experience for international grade 3-8 students at NWS, host family parent(s) should:

  1. Provide a caring, nurturing and supportive environment for international students.
  2. Abide by all rules/guidelines established by the homestay program provider when hosting a student placed by that provider
  3. Be 25 years of age or older, or receive approval from the international student program as an approved exception.
  4. Agree to scheduled in-home inspections by either the international student program or the homestay program provider or both and criminal record checks (for anyone living in the home who is 18 years or older).
  5. Have no more than two international students in the homestay at the same time.
  6. Avoid concurrently hosting both adult and minor international students.
  7. Provide food for three nutritious meals per day.
  8. Provide a clean and tidy home with a private, adequately furnished bedroom, with access to:A. An area with a desk, chair and adequate lighting for homeworkB. A bathroom, linens and use of laundry facilitiesC. Entry into the home like any other member of the family (e.g. house key and alarm code, if applicable)D. Where possible, access to the Internet to support educational goals and consistent communication with home
  9. Ensure the house is safe and complies with the BC Building Code and/or the local building bylaw, as applicable, and with the local fire code.
  10. Ensure a student’s general well-being, seek medical attention when necessary, and report any significant medical or mental health issues to the school, the custodian, the homestay program provider and the international student program.
  11. Inform the school or international student program if the student drinks alcohol, takes or possesses non- prescribed, illegal drugs or breaks the law.
  12. Ensure the home and auto insurance policy adequately covers students residing within their home; some policies do not cover homestay students.
  13. Promote strong connections between an international student and their parents, schools and communities by:

A. Using the student’s desired language of study(English or French) in the home

B. Imposing reasonable limits on the student’s personal use of the internet (i.e. number of hours/day and appropriate times of day)

C. Negotiating and enforcing an appropriate and reasonable curfew and house rules for the student

D. Assisting the student in seeking extra- curricular activities and sports

E. Attending school or district orientation for host families and other cultural or education events


International Student Responsibilities

International students coming to B.C. and entering a homestay should:

  1. Abide by all rules/guidelines established by the homestay program provider when staying with a host family arranged by that provider.
  2. Engage with the host family and the school and seek out opportunities to become involved in the school and family life.
  3. Communicate regularly with their parent/guardian and with their host family.
  4. Communicate significant issues or concerns to the host family, parent/guardian, custodian, school principal, vice-principal or teachers, homestay program provider or international school program as appropriate.
  5. Understand that the school district or independent school international student program may require a student to move homestays or withdraw from the international student program in cases where accommodation that has been arranged privately is deemed to be unsafe or unsuitable.
  6. Respect and be responsible toward the homestay home and property and pay for any damage to family property if found to be responsible for the damage.
  7. Understand that there are the following resources regarding child health and safety:

A. B.C. Helpline for Children (Tel: 310-1234) May be called in cases where the international student feels he/she is being mistreated or feels unsafe in the home or at school.

B. Kids Help Phone (Tel: 1-800-668-6868) Provides counselling and mental health support.

C. Kelty Mental Health Resource Center (http://keltymentalhealth.ca/) Provides resources regarding mental health issues, substance use, medications and healthy living.

Parent/Guardian Responsibilities

  1. Accurately complete the application and in-take materials and disclose all of the student’s relevant information, such as medical conditions, to the homestay program provider and the host family so that they are fully able to support and care for the student for the duration of the homestay.
  2. Stay in regular touch with the student to monitor that the student is coping well with the pressures and stresses that come with living and studying in a new country and learning a new language.
  3. Report significant concerns to the homestay coordinator.
  4. Understand that the NWS international student home stay program may require a student to move homestays or withdraw from the NWS international student home stay program in cases where accommodation that has been arranged privately is deemed to be unsafe or unsuitable.
  5. Understand that there is a BC Children’s Helpline (310-1234), which operates twenty-four hours a day, year round, and may be called in cases where the international student feels he/she is being mistreated or unsafe in the home or at school.

Homestay Family Application

Homestay Program Agreement

Homestay Family Standard Guidelines