Q:  How is Central Memorial’s Performing and Visual Art Program different from other high school programs?

Every high school in the Calgary Board of Education offers strong and substantial fine arts opportunities for students. What makes us unique at Central is:

  • The level of depth and intensity in our performing and visual arts classes. Students enrolled in the PVA program are working and developing at an advanced level and are given the opportunity to excel and explore the arts with like-minded and talented students.
  • The number of students enrolled in the PVA program is now over 400, which contributes to a school culture that is supportive and encouraging for emerging artists.
  • Our unique timetable configuration allows students to participate in one PVA class per day for the duration of their high school career.
  • All PVA students are expected to complete the requirements for a Fine Arts Certificate from the Calgary Board of Education. This means all PVA students are enrolled in and expected to complete one or two additional grade 12 courses; Professional Development in the Arts 35 or Entrepreneurial Artist (Junior Achievement).
  • Unique opportunities, such as Advanced Placement Art, Advanced Placement Music Theory, musicianship courses, a conservatory approach to theatre arts, and Classical Ballet with a piano accompanist set us apart from other high schools.
  • Our facilities – we have two dance studios, three music classrooms, three art studios, and two drama spaces plus our theatre to offer more classes, and give more options to students enrolled at Central.
  • Our teachers are all specialized instructors in their field and offer unique and advanced programs in their area of expertise. They are accomplished professionals that are passionate about offering a full and challenging performing and visual art program to their students. See our Meet the Staff page for more information about our teachers.

Q:  Are a student’s core subjects impacted by the PVA program?

They are not affected. The timetabling ensures students complete a full academic program while specializing in a PVA area of choice.

Q:  Can I still take other option courses?

By choosing to be enrolled in the PVA program, students are committing two of three option times to be in their area of specialty. There is still room in the student’s timetable to request another option such as a CTS course, a general arts class (like dance or visual art) and/or languages.

Q:  Are all the Fine Arts Courses at Central for PVA students only?

No! We offer mainstream fine arts courses for any Central student.

Q:  Can I start the PVA program in Grade 11 or 12?

Ideally, students will benefit from our program if they begin in grade 10. The courses and timetables we have created are cumulative and build on the foundations learned during the grade 10 year. Students enrolled in Central’s PVA program are required to complete the CBE’s Fine Arts Certificate requirements, and late applicants may not be able to fulfill those due to timetabling and scheduling difficulties. Our program is built on a three-year model that helps to nourish and develop artistic growth through foundation and advanced classes. Students starting late may not benefit fully from the program. Any grade 11 or 12 student wishing to apply for PVA needs to go through the admission process as we ask our grade 9 applicants to do, and their applications will be looked at on a case-by-case basis.

Q:  Can I withdraw from the PVA Program if I’m not successful or I change my mind?

At the end of the school year, you may withdraw from the PVA Program but we do like to get feedback as to why you would make that choice. If you are part of Central Memorial’s boundary area, you may continue in Central’s general program. If you are an out-of-boundary student, continuing to attend Central Memorial will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Q:  Will I be withdrawn from the PVA program based on poor marks?

Students are expected to participate to the best of their ability and display commitment in all aspects of their discipline along with academic programs as taught through the Alberta Learning Program of Studies. PVA students are expected to maintain a minimum of 65% in their PVA specialty. If commitment to PVA is detrimental to a student’s grades in other subjects, we may need to ask you to withdraw. We are, first and foremost, a high school, and we do expect students to work to potential in all classes.

Q:  Can I apply to two different PVA disciplines?

Students are welcome to apply to two different PVA disciplines if they choose. You must audition for BOTH at separate times. Audition and Interview times will need to be juggled accordingly so as not to overlap.

Q:  Can I be enrolled in two different PVA Programs at once?

Due to the intense study and commitment required for one PVA program, it is difficult and challenging to complete two PVA programs during your high school career. Depending on academic course needs and schedules, participating in two PVA streams may be possible. Requests will be handled on an individual basis and should be discussed with teachers at the audition/interview.

Q:  Do I still get my regular courses, like Math, Science, Social and English? 

Yes! Of course, all required courses are available for you within the timetable. Central Memorial has strong core subject teachers and offers a wide range of levels in math, English, social studies and the sciences.

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