Group of students downtown.

Pre-Arrival: Choose Chatham-Kent

Are you interested in earning Canadian credits, diplomas or degrees? Many of Chatham-Kent’s educational institutions have international programs to meet a wide variety of needs. Some international students stay for a few weeks or a term, while others decide to enroll in multi-year diploma or degree programs. Visit the sites below to learn about different program options:

Elementary School Programs

Secondary School Programs

* St Clair Catholic District School Board does not currently have an international program, but will consider admitting international students who meet eligibility requirements.

Private Schools

  • Chatham Christian Schools provide a Christian education for elementary and secondary school students, allowing students to reach their full academic potential while serving the community.
  • Darul Uloom Canada is a private boarding school that provides religious and secular education for students in an Islamic environment.
  • Eben-Ezer Christian School provides elementary school education as part of the Canadian Reformed School Society, guiding children to commit their hearts to Jesus Christ.
  • Edward International Academy is a Grade 9 to Grade 12 Boarding High School aimed at anyone who wants to study in Canada, and possibly apply for Canadian and U.S. Universities after their graduation.
  • Montessori School in Chatham provides toddler education for children ages 16 months to 2.5-years-old, and a Casa Program for children ages 2.5 to 6-years-old.
  • Wallaceburg Christian School provides elementary school education through quality, Bible-based, Christian curriculum to help children develop their body, mind and soul.

Post-Secondary Schools 

Once you have been accepted into a program, you will need to obtain a Canadian study permit. Most schools will be able to assist you with this process, but information about the permit application process can also be found at the Government of Canada’s website. Make sure that you check the processing times for permits and apply well in advance of your program’s start date.

Current Students: Making the Most of Your Time in Chatham-Kent

Once you have arrived in Chatham-Kent, your school’s international program coordinator should be able to help with questions about daily life, such as how to set up a bank account and what to do if you need a doctor. Information for newcomers can also be found elsewhere on this site. If you have any additional questions, please contact us at livingck@chatham-kent.ca or 519.360.1998.

Looking for a place to stay during your time in Chatham-Kent? International students have the option to stay with a local family as part of a homestay program. There are two homestay providers in Chatham-Kent:

(Local residents who are interested in becoming a homestay provider to international students can find more information here).

Post-secondary students have other options such as staying in on-campus residences or renting their own accommodations. For rentals, check sites such as gottarent.com or kijiji.ca. Most landlords will require that you provide identification, a security deposit, and first and last months rent.

While in Chatham-Kent, make sure to take time to experience the region’s history and culture. Chatham-Kent also has plenty of trails, parks, beaches, and waterways for students who are interested in outdoor pursuits. Chatham-Kent Tourism Services can offer plenty of suggestions of things to see and do in your free time; for more information, visit VisitCK.ca or call 1.800.561.6125.

What Next? Information for Graduating Students

It is never too early to start thinking of life after graduation. Talk to officials at your school about part-time jobs, work-study programs, or volunteer placements that will allow you to gain Canadian work experience.

Many international students who graduate from Chatham-Kent secondary schools go on to study at Canadian colleges and universities. More information about post-secondary options can be found here.

Post-secondary students who are graduating from St Clair College or University of Guelph’s Ridgetown Campus might be eligible for a number of programs that will allow them to work and live in Canada:

Interested students should consult the federal and provincial websites for more details about eligibility requirements and application processes.

Graduating students who would like to remain in the Chatham-Kent area can find more information about local employers here. There are a number of job boards that provide local employment listings, such as the Municipality of Chatham-Kent’s Community Jobs and Municipal Jobs boards. The municipality also offers career counselling through its Employment Resource Centres.