Hi, I am Valerie! I started homeschooling late in my high school career. I grew up going to regular school and always felt social anxiety. After moving across the country from Ottawa, Ontario to Vancouver, BC, I found it extremely overwhelming having to reintroduce myself to different environments. I’m more quiet and to myself. Homeschooling made me feel safe and allowed me to explore my interests without any internal struggles.
Homeschooling made me feel safe and allowed me to explore my interests without any internal struggles.
This is how HCOS shaped my life. During my freshman year of regular high school, I encountered teachers that made me feel less than and this discouraged me from my passion for science. I ended up giving up on that goal and after one year, decided to switch to homeschooling to finish my high school diploma. I tried pursuing other interests such as acting and modeling, but they never fulfilled my goals. Eventually, I found HCOS, and things started to look up from there. The administrators made me feel very welcomed. After telling the administration at HCOS my story, they congratulated me for not giving up and continuing my studies. This was genuinely the first time in my K-12 experience that I felt seen and not judged by a teacher figure.
...even though I wasn’t the best at math, he was patient with me and always encouraged me to keep going.
I remember working with Aliesha Best, in the student support centre. I appreciated my time with her and felt comfortable telling her about my passion for science and biology. After hearing that, she talked to the grad advisor about me, and this jump-started me to start focusing on that goal again, regardless of how I felt about my skills in the past. I also wanted to mention Mr. Ryan Johnston. He was my math teacher and even though I wasn’t the best at math, he was patient with me and always encouraged me to keep going. Without him I probably would not have completed any of my desired math courses.
HCOS truly means so much to me. Without this school and all the amazing teachers, advisors, tutors, etc. I would’ve fully lost my passion for science. Although it’s still early in my journey and I have a lot of work to do, I will still always think of and appreciate HCOS for everything. I am currently attending post-secondary and working on a science degree in hopes to become a biologist and help the environment, all thanks to HCOS.