At the heart of Surrey Schools is a district-wide shared vision for learning – Learning by Design – where we prepare our learners for a world in which they think creatively and critically, communicate skillfully, and demonstrate care for self and others.

Learning by Design has three core aspects – Learning, Structures, and Tools – that support innovation in our schools.



Students chatting in the school yard

Principles of Learning by Design

Learning by Design empowers our teachers to design learning conditions that are student-centred, inquiry-focused, engaging, and steeped in real-world experiences. It is focused on embracing technologies, innovation, and connecting learning to local and global communities.

Learning by Design enables our students to access learning according to their passions, curiosities, and needs.

Learning by Design encourages innovation in learning spaces where our teachers, support staff, and students inquire, imagine, design, think critically, reflect and learn together.

Learning by Design is not only a vision for the classroom. It anchors all aspects of our work. From instruction to professional development, research and program evaluation to school and community connections, the work we do across the district carries out this three-part vision for learning. Learning by Design in action uses all of these building blocks into priority practices: curriculum design, instructional strategies, quality assessment, and social and emotional learning (SEL).

Students in a study group

Strategic Planning for Student Learning

Surrey School District’s strategic plan outlines the steps we are taking to achieve our vision of Learning by Design.

Learning by Design through classroom instruction

Students and teachers work together to gather, interpret, and respond to the evidence of their learning through answering the questions: What am I learning? Why is it important? How am I doing? How do I know? What are my next steps?

Learning by Design through community connections

Surrey enhances student learning by creating a community environment that helps students meet their achievement, attendance, and attachment goals based on their individual needs.  

Learning by Design through research and evaluation

Research emphasizes the utility of the structures and tools used to ensure students are achieving their goals. The district collects data in accordance with legislative requirements on grade-to-grade and other transitions, literacy and numeracy, and student well-being.