Shawnigan Lake School

5.00 5 1 (2 reviews)
1975 Renfrew Road
Shawnigan Lake, BC V0R2W1, Canada
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #1 - At Shawnigan, the journey always begins and ends with the individual. No two young people are the same, and the art of a boarding school like ours is to cultivate their unique talents while teaching them to learn together, to work together, to play together and to live together.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #2 - The Friesen Student Centre is a brand new facility that houses the Stag Cafe, and allows students to develop friendships and bonds that last a lifetime.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #3
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #4 - Although the majority (80%) of students come from Canada and the United States, students from more than thirty countries are counted in our student body. This diversity allows for unique perspectives and opinions, and gives students a greater degree of global awareness.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #5 - The entire school gathers daily for sit-down meals in Marion Hall. This architecturally stunning facility allows for students and staff to share a family-style dining experience.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #6
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #7 - Shawnigan was founded in 1916, and while the School still honours many of its long-held traditions, it also has a solid footing in the world of today, and an innovative eye on tomorrow.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #8 - Creative opportunities abound at Shawnigan, where students can choose from more than 30 Fine Arts programs including music, visual arts, drama, dance, woodworking and video production. Service education is also a vital part of the School program, evidenced in programs like the Environment Club and the EDGE Leadership Program.
Shawnigan Lake School Photo #9 - Shawnigan continually develops and expands its first-class athletics program. Our teams have won provincial and national championships in sports including rugby, ice hockey, rowing, squash and field hockey.
  • Shawnigan Lake School is a world-class, co-ed boarding school located on Vancouver Island.
  • Our setting is magnificent 380 acres in a safe, clean, rural environment that boasts sweeping lawns, gorgeous gardens and excellent facilities.
  • Shawnigan delivers a challenging university-preparatory program. Of particular interest is the number of our grads accepted at top Canadian and American universities like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, McGill, Queens and the University of Toronto.

Alumni Reviews
  Review School

  • Review Description
  • Boston University
    To me, Shawnigan Lake School is unique in that it is a close-knitted community. Rather than compete, collaboration is how students and staff practice on a daily basis. Also, Shawnigan instills a sense of leadership. . .
  • UBC
    The first thing you'll notice about Shawnigan that sets it apart is its stunning natural beauty set in a quiet, quaint, rural area. The buildings and facilities are spectacular and the very first time. . .

Top 10 Placements

Similar Size Schools

Shawnigan Lake School is listed among the top 10 schools with > 400 students (out of 105 schools) for:

Definition of Terms
 | 2020 School Data
Shawnigan Lake School
School FocusCollege Preparatory
Grades (Boarding)Grades 8-12
School TypeCo-ed
ADD/ADHD SupportYes
Supports Learning Differences (LD)Yes
Religious AffiliationNon-denominational
Year Founded1916
Campus Size380 acres

Student Body

Enrollment515 students
% Students of Color
% International Students
% Students Boarding

Academics and Faculty

Saturday ClassesYes
Classroom Dress CodeFormal
Average Class Size16 students
Teacher : Student Ratio1:8
Number of AP Courses Offered19
ESL Courses OfferedYes
% Faculty with Advanced Degree
Summer Program OfferedYes
Summer Program Cost$3,900
(Boarding, Meals and Transportation included)
Summer Program DetailsLink to Summer Program Details


Endowment Size$13.5 million
Yearly Tuition
(Boarding Students)
Yearly Tuition
(Day Students)
Tuition international students$67,900
% Students on Financial Aid
Avg. Financial Aid Grant$17,400
Merit Scholarships OfferedYes


Application DeadlineNone / Rolling
Accepts Standardized ApplicationYes
Acceptance Rate
Director of AdmissionsMrs. Gaynor Samuel
Associate Director of AdmissionsMs. Margot Allen

Course Listings

List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses

AP / Advanced Courses

Total Advanced Courses Offered19
Courses2-D Design Portfolio, Biology, Calculus, Chemistry 12, Chinese Language and Culture, Computer Science, English Language and Composition, English Literature, European History, French Language and Culture, German, Human Geography, Physics 1, Physics 2, Physics C , Spanish, United States History


# Interscholastic Sports Offered19 Interscholastic Sports
SportsBadminton, Ballet, Basketball, Crew, Cross Country, Dance, Field Hockey, Figure Skating, Golf, Ice Hockey, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Rugby, Soccer, Squash, Swimming, Tennis, Track and Field, Volleyball


Total Extracurricular Organizations32 Extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsEDGE Program, Goss Rifle Team

Club or Organization:
Civic Leadership, Constabulary, Entrepreneurship Club, Environment Club, Voices/Diversity Club, Year Book

Arts and Music Programs:
Birding Society, Choir, Computer Graphics, Concert Club, Dance Club, Debate Club, Drama Club, Drama Troupe, Etiquette Committee, Fashion Design, Film Club, Fine Arts Club, First Tee Program of the PGA, Latham Society (writing), M Club, Reserve Jazz Project, Sewing, String Orchestra, Super Fan Club, Textile Arts, Website Design, Woodworking

Recreational Athletic Programs:
Camping Club, Skiing

College Matriculation

Year: 10 Most Popular College Choices  (# Enrolled)
Link to Matriculation Data

School Notes

  • Founded in 1916, Shawnigan is an independent, co-educational, university-preparatory boarding school for students in grades 8-12. The campus is ideally located in the peaceful village of Shawnigan Lake on beautiful Vancouver Island, British Columbia, approximately 45 minutes north of the city of Victoria. The town of Shawnigan Lake is located in the Cowichan Valley, often referred to as the "Provence" of Canada because of the vast number of vineyards, gourmet restaurants and organic farms. Local organic produce, gourmet cheeses and seafood fresh from the sea are in abundance.
  • Academic Program - Shawnigan's academic program is university preparatory; the curriculum meets and exceeds British Columbia Ministry of Education standards. Both Honours and Advanced Placement courses are available.
  • Extra Curricular Sports and Fine Arts Program - Sports and Fine Arts are a mandatory part of the curriculum at Shawnigan. Rugby and Rowing are a focus for boys and girls. Volleyball, field hockey, cross country, basketball, tennis, squash, soccer, swimming, and sailing are some of the other sports offered. Shawnigan also has an active outdoor pursuits program, which takes advantage of our natural surroundings through hiking, kayaking and camping. Shawnigan recognizes that students have different abilities, and we therefore offer various levels of competition. We also believe that Fine Arts help to develop lifelong skills for students in drama, art, photography, sculpture, woodworking, dance, music, pottery, voice and community outreach, among others. One Fine Art, the Environment Club, has recently been augmented through the addition of our own salmon hatchery and on-site recycling and composting facilities.
  • EDGE Leadership Program - EDGE stands for: Engagement of mind, body and spirit; Development of individuals; Gratitude that grows from awareness; and Experience, the most powerful teacher. This program began as a Re-building trip in the wake of the 2004 Tsunami in Thailand. Out of this humanitarian outreach endeavour grew what is known today at Shawnigan as the EDGE Leadership Programme. To date, Shawnigan`s EDGE Leadership Programme has sent twelve teams to Thailand, one to Argentina, one to Laos, three to China, one to South Africa and one to Zimbabwe.
  • Campus - Shawnigan's Board of Governors firmly believes that inspired teaching and learning happen in an inspiring setting and we are fortunate to have one of the finest campuses in the world. The rural, 380-acre lakeside campus is the ideal setting for this vibrant community of learners. Our state-of-the-art facilities are a direct result of the generous support of our alumni, parents, and friends and we remain committed to constant improvement
  • LD types supported: Language-based differences, giftedness
  • Shawnigan Lake School accreditations: Canadian Association of Independent Schools (CAIS), National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS), Western Boarding Schools Association (WBSA), BC Independent Schools Association (ISABC), Federation of Independent Schools (FISA),
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