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International Students

Last updated on Friday, October 20, 2017.

HWDSB welcomes international students to live and learn in our safe, diverse and welcoming community. Students visiting Hamilton from abroad have a great opportunity to get a high-quality education while learning about other cultures and perspectives. In addition, teachers and staff at HWDSB have experience helping international students adapt to life in Canada.

Key Documents

Important Notes

  • Acceptance of secondary school applications is subject to an academic standing of an 75% average or greater.
  • Applications for February 2018 (Second Semester) should be received no later than November 30, 2017.
  • Applications for the 2018-2019 school year (September 2018 start date) should be received no later than May 31, 2018.

Secondary students who require English as a Second Language/English Literacy Development (ESL/ELD) instruction will be recommended to attend schools that provide ESL/ELD programs.

Learn more in one of the following International Student Packages:

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board is a large school board located in the province of Ontario. HWDSB services the communities of Hamilton, Ancaster, Dundas, Flamborough, Glanbrook and Stoney Creek.

Secondary Schools

  • Grade 9 to 12 (Full days Monday to Friday for about 6 hours per day)
  • In Ontario, attendance at school is compulsory to 18 years of age.

School Year at a Glance

  • September to June
  • Winter Break in December/January
  • Spring Break in March

Schools provide notification of Professional Activity Days and public holidays such as Thanksgiving Day, Good Friday and Victoria Day. Learn more about the School Year Calendar.

International fee-paying students must make an intake and assessment appointment with the Admissions Office prior to attending school at HWDSB.

All International Fee Paying Students must present the following documentation to the Admissions office at the time of their scheduled intake appointment/assessment.

  • Study Permit
  • Passport
  • Previous School Record
  • Custody Information (if applicable)
  • Proof of valid Health Insurance Coverage
  • Proof of residency in Hamilton (relative or custodian)

The Assessment Centre reviews the student’s understanding of English and Mathematics. During the assessment, the teacher will work one-on-one with the student and observe some of the factors that might affect success in his/her new school.

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