Heritage Academy of Learning Excellence, founded by Louise Brazeau-Ward, has come a long way since its inception. In the early 1980s, Louise (as she is known at the school) was a frustrated parent tired of watching her dyslexic son continually struggle in school. This compelled her to focus her time and energy towards dyslexia research in order to help her son and other children struggling with this learning disability. Through her involvement in this issue, Louise became an internationally recognized expert in the field of dyslexia research and therapy. With the goal of providing an academic environment that met the unique needs of students with dyslexia and other learning disabilities, Louise opened Heritage Academy in 1989.
As Louise began to train new teachers, she recognized the necessity for a specialized system to support the development and strengthening of written language skills in dyslexic students. To meet this need, she developed the Simultaneous Multisensory Teaching method (SMT), a unique learning system available in both English and French. Since its introduction, teachers, students and parents alike have found this system to be a highly effective way of improving and enhancing reading, writing and spelling skills in dyslexic students. SMT is still taught at Heritage Academy, with the concepts being integrated into all aspects of the curriculum. SMT is also utilized in schools and homes throughout Canada and abroad.
With Louise Ward’s retirement in 2006, Heritage Academy is now under the watchful eye of Cheryl Ward, Louise’s daughter. The school has grown larger, but remains true to its original purpose. We continue to specialize in supporting dyslexic students, and have expanded our expertise to provide additional comprehensive support to students with a variety of learning disabilities. By promoting the values of honesty, perseverance and respect, Heritage Academy fosters acceptance and growth amongst our students, and enables them to reach their full academic potential.