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Family Boarding Hosts

What is the Family Boarding homestay program?

Each year, we receive applications from families across the globe who are in search of a school that offers an outstanding educational and life experience for their child. The GNS Family Boarding program was developed in 2013 with a set of criteria that is unique within Canada: hosts must be current GNS parents, a GNS teacher or staff member, or GNS Alumni. This model ensures our family boarding students live with families who are directly connected to the GNS community. These connections help ensure a stronger integration between family boarding students and the school and a more successful experience for students.
One or two family boarding students are placed with each GNS host family by Ms. Katie Ramm, our Admissions and Boarding Coordinator. Placements typically range from one to three years during school months (September to June). However, we are also seeking relief hosts for holiday breaks in the fall, winter and spring. Each student is matched with a family based on the hobbies, interests, dietary restrictions, allergies and other attributes of both the student and the host family to help strengthen the potential for a successful experience for all. Host families receive a stipend to cover the cost of meals, utilities and other expenses.

Why do we offer the Family Boarding homestay program?

GNS strives to create a rich global lens through which students engage in our curricula. As both an IB Continuum school and a member of the Round Square organization, we value the opportunity for students to experience a community that is more representative of our increasingly interconnected world. Communication skills, the willingness to build consensus and the ability to demonstrate acceptance and understanding in the face of difference are virtues that tomorrow's leaders will need to embody and employ. Interactions between young minds with differing viewpoints offer real opportunities to foster empathy, respect and learning. We feel that having a robust and well-managed international student program at GNS helps to facilitate this global mindset.

Hear from a Host Family

Why should you consider hosting?

In order for the GNS Family Boarding program to thrive, we rely on the active engagement of our community: current GNS parents, GNS teachers, GNS staff or GNS alumni.. Your involvement helps ensure the sustainability of this program, which fosters a diverse and dynamic student body.
There are several benefits to being a GNS host family. Current and past host families share stories of lifelong connections and friendships with past students and their families—many have since travelled abroad to visit families eager to share their appreciation. For host families with their own children, welcoming a student from a different culture can be a highly enriching experience.

How can you become a GNS Family Boarding host?

If you are interested in being considered as a GNS Family Boarding host family, and you meet the following criteria, we would like to hear from you!
  • You are a current GNS parent, GNS teacher, GNS staff member or GNS Alumni,
  • You have one or more additional bedrooms within your home (no separate suites),
  • You live within 15 km of either GNS campus,
  • You have the ability to provide healthy meals and a safe, nurturing home environment,
  • You are able to include a family boarding student in activities as an extended member of your family, and
  • English is the primary language spoken within your home.

Glenlyon Norfolk School

Junior School (JK to Grade 5)

Middle (Grade 6 to 8) and Senior (Grade 9 to 12) Schools

We wish to acknowledge and respect the Straits Salish Peoples on whose traditional territory we gather. Specifically, we recognize the Lekwungen Peoples known today as the Songhees Nation and the Esquimalt Nation, whose historical relationships with the land where we live, work, play and learn continue to this day.