Founded in 1989, NISPA of Ontario has grown to become Canada's largest organization dedicated to independent school parents' association leaders and representatives.


Professional development of independent school parent leaders, learning, sharing best practices, support and networking.


  • provides a forum for knowledge and information sharing
  • raises awareness of important issues that impact K-12 school environments
  • facilitates workshops and conferences to promote functional best practices
  • promotes diversity and inclusion
  • offers supportive resources to improve the health and well-being of families with school-aged children
  • encourages volunteerism
  • advances excellence in parents' association governance
  • publishes regular newsletters and conducts regular surveys
  • fosters a sense of community with in-person and virtual events as well as with a social media presence

Our members are representatives from Independent Schools based in Ontario. Learn more about becoming a member school.

NISPA Values


We believe we are stronger when we connect to learn from and support each other.


We believe that transferring knowledge is at the heart of all we do and that transfer of knowledge is in the best interests of our school communities.


We believe that strong parent leadership in schools leads to better outcomes for our students.


We believe that looking beyond ourselves and promoting diversity and inclusion allows us to appreciate our differences and become a stronger collective.


In 1989 and 1990, organized meetings were held by a group of involved parents who recognized the benefits that could be realized by knowledge transfer and idea sharing among independent schools within the Conference of Independent Schools of Ontario.

In Spring of 1990, a steering committee was put in place to formalize the structure, constitution, membership requirements, mission statement and recording procedure for this group. NISPA (formerly known as Interguild) held its first Annual General Meeting in April of 1990, where a constitution was presented and ratified.

The founding executive was comprised of parent leaders from St. Mildred's-Lightbourn School, Lakefield College, St. Andrew's College, Crescent School, The Bishop Strachan School, Albert College and Upper Canada College.

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