Frequently Asked Questions

//Frequently Asked Questions
Yearley Outdoor Education Centre
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Frequently Asked Questions2019-07-15T16:15:26-04:00

Please see the list below of frequently asked questions regarding our facility, the programs, history, and more.

Throughout the school year, the School Board offers a two day, one night, curriculum-related outdoor education activities that are enriched with relevant, interesting, and rewarding hands-on programming. 
Every Grade 6 student in the Trillium Lakelands District School Board has the opportunity to come to Yearley.
Yearley Outdoor Education Centre is located 28 km northwest of Huntsville, Ontario. See our ‘Contact Us’ tab for directions and details.

The Yearley Outdoor Education Centre was originally the Middleton homestead. It later became the home of the W. J. Yearley family and is now operated by Trillium Lakelands District School Board (TLDSB).  Mr. Yearley had always wanted his home to be used by children for educational pursuits. In his later years, he sold his property to the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. TLDSB now leases approximately one acre with the buildings for student use.

Mr. Yearley owned a successful sewer and water construction company in Toronto. In 1961 he retired to the area. Using local labourers as well as men and equipment from the Yearley and Reed Construction Company of Toronto, he constructed three ponds and stocked them with trout. These ponds were completed during the mid-1960’s and are now a part of a large tract of crown land adjacent to the Yearley Centre.

The former Huntsville Board of Education first used the facilities in the late 1960’s for outdoor education. Later, the Muskoka Board of Education expanded this use until it became apparent that larger facilities were needed.

During the summer of 1981, three portable classroom buildings were moved to the site. Two of these were converted into girls’ and boys’ dormitories and the third into a kitchen dining area. The old garage, which is located next to the original house, has been converted into washrooms, complete with toilets, basins and showers.

The Yearley Outdoor Education Centre is now part of the TLDSB and hosts approximately 1500 students per year.

The Board pays for transportation, program, and all other expenses except for food. The cost depends on how much your class spends on groceries. The total cost of the food is divided by the number of students going; then each student pays an equal amount, generally around $25 each.

Students, teachers, and adult volunteers sleep in heated/air conditioned dormitories. Each dorm sleeps 20 people in total. There is a boys’ dorm and a girls’ dorm, each equipped with night-lights and emergency lighting. There will be at least one adult supervisor for every 10 kids in each dorm.
The classroom teacher will give each student a personal packing list to take home. In addition to the list of items we recommend, we have listed optional items, and items to leave at home.
If a student thinks they may recover quickly when they feel sick then they might be able to stay at the centre. If someone is really sick, their parents will be called to pick them up. All Yearley staff have Standard First Aid/CPR certification.
Students may call parents and speak with them at their teacher’s discretion, however we request that you don’t take advantage of the phone and reserve it for emergency calls only.
Students and their teacher will discuss a menu at school.
If a student is allergic to any food the class decides to eat, then it is very important to inform the teacher so that arrangements can be made ahead of time to accommodate their needs for meals at Yearley.
Everyone will be busy playing and having fun outside, eating well, and playing some more! Classroom teachers decide which programs fit best with the learning students are doing in class and will have a schedule of the curriculum-related outdoor activities their class will be participating in.
Yes. All students participate in the activities while learning outdoors. Everyone also helps with meal preparations and clean-up, while having fun pitching in and learning to work as a team in community.
No, students go to school as usual, then get on a bus to travel to Yearley.
Yes, if they have a current Police Record Check, parents may come to Yearley as visitors at certain times or they may volunteer to come as helpers. There is a parent acknowledgement form that needs to be completed and returned to the school.  
Programs continue as planned, even if it is raining. The only time we hold off on program and come inside is when there is thunder and lightning. Students need to bring and wear rain jackets if it is raining. There is a class set of raincoats, rain pants and boots at Yearley, just in case. A clothes dryer is also available.
It will depend on the programs and season of the year. During the winter months snowshoes, cross country skis and boots, GTs, and helmets are available. During the warmer months, a fleet of canoes, paddles and personal floatation devices are available There are also rain coats, pants, and rain boots, and bug jackets available. There will be adult supervision of all the equipment provided at Yearley. In the case of canoeing, a provincially certified instructor will be supervising.
Yes, hot showers are available in each bathroom.
The water at Yearley is very good to drink. The well water is tested weekly and at there is an ultra violet system at each water source. Students are encouraged to bring a refillable water bottle.
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