New to Halifax?

New to Halifax?


The Halifax Regional Centre for Education (HRCE) is excited to have your family join our school community. Arriving in a new city or country can be difficult, especially for children as they adjust to life away from home and start a different school.

We are here to help and answer any questions you have. Connect with us!

Families may find the resources listed below helpful:

  • Student RegistrationVisit this page for instructions on how to enroll your child in an HRCE school.
  • School Finder: Here's where you'll find your child's home school.
  • Student Transportation: Find out if your child is eligible for busing to and from school.
  • School Calendar: Visit this page to view the current school calendar.
  • Before & After School Care: See more information about EXCEL, the before and after school program operated by HRCE. The provincial Before and After Program (BAP) is also an option for families requiring care. 
  • French ProgramsThere are French first language schools in Nova Scotia (CSAP). HRCE schools offer French second language programs. Here's where you'll find more information about French programming offered in HRCE schools.
  • Parent Navigators: The role of the Parent Navigator is to help parents/guardians of HRCE students find and access services available in education, justice, health, community services and more. 
  • ​International Students: Interested in becoming an international student? Here's where you find that more information.

There are many children learning English in HRCE schools. Some schools have a permanent EAL (English as an Additional Language) teacher and others have EAL teachers that visit for shorter periods during the week (these schools do not have as many students learning English so the EAL teacher will travel).

During your child’s first week of school, they will meet the EAL teacher and participate in some English activities. The EAL teacher will find out about your child’s interests, their vocabulary and do some reading and writing exercises. This will allow the teacher to determine your child’s level of English and will help their regular classroom teacher better support them.

If your child requires EAL support, you will receive a form to fill out to help us learn more about your child and their learning experiences. EAL teachers will help your child develop the reading, writing, listening and speaking skills required to be successful in the classroom. It is not a separate English class, but one that supports the content they will be learning. Sometimes support takes place in the classroom, and at other times it may take place in smaller group settings.

It is important for your child to maintain their home language. The skills developed in their home language will support the learning of additional languages. By maintaining their home language, your child will continue to take pride in it and their culture, be able to communicate with extended family and friends and have a stronger sense of identity.

Click here to watch a video of students in EAL at work in the classroom.

  • ABRACADABRA: An interactive, web-based tool that supports early readers.
  • Activities for EAL Students: Offers grammar and vocabulary practice for all levels.
  • BBC - Learning English: Has a wide variety of materials and resources for all levels of language learners.
  • CBC Kids News: Offers news for children and youth.
  • Epic: Your child’s teacher can set them up with a password to access digital books that will expose them to entertaining stories with rich vocabulary.
  • Halifax Public Libraries: Visit in person or online. You will find a growing collection of books, e-books and audiobooks available in many languages.
  • PBS Learning Media: Includes resources for Pre-Primary to Grade 12.
  • Raz-Plus: Your child’s teacher can set them up with an account so they can practice their reading at home.
  • Unite for Literacy: Offers free texts for elementary students to read. Text is available in many other languages and in American Sign Language (ASL).
  • YouTube Kids: Use subtitles to support understanding of YouTube videos. To help with learning the alphabet and letter sounds, search “English Alphabet” or “Letters and Letter Sounds” and you will find many results. YouTube Kids is designed to be a family-friendly online environment, safe and easy for children to explore independently. This needs to be set up by an adult.