All-School Calendar
  • November 2017
    • FriNov24 Thanksgiving Holiday: NO CLASSES - BUILDING CLOSED
    • SatNov25 MS Homework-Free Weekend
    • WedNov29 Junior Chapel and Reception (US Formal Uniform) CHANGED: Time originally noted (8:00 a.m.) was an error. 10:20 AMLyman

On Wednesday, October 11 Laurel School hosted its first ever STEAM Inspiration event for Kindergarten through Grade Eight. More than 25 alumnae and parents all working within STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics) visited the school to lead sessions that incorporated principles of STEAM as it related to their profession. The Chagrin Valley Times visited Laurel for the event and wrote a story featuring several highlights of this special event.

Bella Patel, Associate Director of the Primary School, said to the girls that "The 25 women volunteers are here to inspire you and show you the possibility of STEAM choices." Headmistress Ann V. Klotz was also included in the story, stating that "Women enter [into STEAM] but they don't stay, so it's not a pipeline problem. It's further down than we can address in a K-12 girls setting. So we turn our mind to how can we strengthen our women's network, include stories of struggle, opportunities for STEAM projects, and make them feel like they can make a difference."

Monica Shein '98 was one of the alums in attendance. As a nurse anesthetist, she showed Laurel students how to intubate dolls. "It's nice for girls to see women in the field of medicine. They see how women can be in any profession, and it's important for my daughter to see that I'm a mom and also have a career."

Click here to read the full story.

Saturday, October 21 marked the last day of Laurel's incredible tennis season where Rachel Buchinsky '20 and Priya Khadilkar '19 advanced to the state semifinals when they beat Hathaway Brown in a tiebreaker. The doubles team then advanced to the state championship game versus the #1 seeded HB team. Laurel came out swinging but ultimately lost. Congratulations to these state runner ups on an incredible tennis season! To read more click here to check out the Cleveland Jewish News's highlight of Rachel as their Player of the Week

 

 

 

 

Bethany Husni '18 was recently featured as a young entrepreneur on WCPN's The Sound of Ideas. During her interview Bethany discussed her dress company 31:25, which was born out of her desire to wear modest yet confidence-boosting clothing. Through Laurel School's Protégé Program, Bethany was able to turn her passion for sewing and fashion into a small business, selling custom clothing to family, friends and beyond. Through the Protégé Program Bethany also conducted an internship with Blush Boutique, which now carries her clothing. Click here to listen to the full interview.

Laurel School's seventh annual Sarah Lyman Day of Service, which took place on October 7, was recently highlighted on Cleveland.com. The article focused on the nearly 100 Laurel alumnae from across the country that participated in close to 300 hours of community service in Cleveland and seven other cities including Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Denver, Washington, D.C., New York City and Seattle.

Here in Cleveland, 20 Laurel alumnae and current students spent the morning at Ronald McDonald House cooking breakfasts for residents and planting tulip bulbs in the Tulip Sculpture Garden.

The day of service was named appropriately enough for Sarah E. Lyman, Laurel's headmistress from 1904-31. Click here to read the full story.

Laurel's varsity golf team recently closed out an incredible season! After placing second in the Northeast Sectional Golf Tournament the team qualified to compete in States, which took place October 13 and 14 at Ohio State University's Scarlet and Gray Golf Course in Columbus. 

The team, coached by Upper School Spanish Teacher and Director of Service Learning Marti Hardy, went on to break their District record of 352 strokes when on day one of States the team shot a 339. The final result was a fourth place finish. Jami Morris '21 was honored as Second Team All Ohio, Taylor Thierry '21, shot a hole-on-one on the Par 3 17th hole, Grace Durdle '19 and Haley Thierry '21 both had their personal best scores and we watched Sophia Levinson '18 play her last hole as a Laurel Senior. Click here to read more in Cleveland.com.

Congratulations to the golf team on a fantastic season! 


Cleveland Magazine recently conducted a Q&A with Jessie Sun, STEAM Program Leader at Laurel School, focused on art and how it plays a vital role as part of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, mathematics). In the piece Jessie comments that at Laurel many girls saw themselves more as artists and didn't see themselves with a STEM future. But art and science really go hand in hand. Jessie states that, "A lot of art we see right now is driven because of science. We use art images to describe and simplify complicated schematic designs." Click here to read more.

Sarah Wilson, Director of Upper School and Laurel's Center for Research on Girls, was recently included in a Cleveland Magazine story focused on digital literacy and how schools are teaching it as a way for kids to become critical thinkers, collaborators and responsibly engaged.

In the article, Sarah discusses how Laurel "requires a four-year life skills guidance course that includes lessons on digital citizenship. Along with learning how to know whether digital sources are trustworthy, the school teaches what it means to be your best self online." She goes in to state that "We have a mantra. You’re a Laurel girl in and out of school and on the internet. You hear girls in social settings repeating that and reminding each other."

The article goes on to state that "As an all-girls school, various Laurel courses teach students about sexism and the unrealistic expectations the media places on women’s body images. For example, humanities teachers discuss how sexism and power dynamics are portrayed in the arts, history and literature."

Sarah is quoted again saying some students will "develop a passion for gender equity and carry that torch to do something influential on their college campuses and with their careers."

Click here to read the full article.

The Cleveland Jewish News recently spoke with Laurel's Associate Head of School, Kathryn Purcell, to discuss the benefits of a private high school. At Laurel, there is a number of benefits. I think the environment allows the girls to be serious students, to be themselves and to connect with one another in a way that doesn’t add any social pressures or any expectations in how they are supposed to behave." She goes on to state that Laurel is "a smaller environment, and with that, we’re able to grow relationships with each girl so she knows (the school) has her back. In general, at private schools, teachers are of high caliber and they are incredibly dedicated to their students. It’s a community-driven experience." Kathryn also highlights in the piece that Laurel is seeing more students take an active role in the decision process. "They know if they want an academically rigorous environment." Click here to read the full story.

 

In her latest New York Times column, Lisa Damour, Ph.D., Director of Laurel's Center for Research on Girls, tackles adolescent curiosity and how they will satisfy it online. She states that, "Young people have always been curious about sex, and when our teenagers have questions, the internet is usually their first stop, for worse and for better. Adolescents can and do find highly explicit sexual material online, and an emerging body of research tells a worrisome story about the place of pornography in young people's lives." Dr. Damour goes on to state that "teenagers also turn to the internet for information about relationships and sexual health."

In this digital age there is no shortage of topics to tackle with adolescents - from dating violence to how all consuming relationships can become with a smartphone in hand. The column hones in on how parents can address these topics by talking with teenagers about pornography and by directing them to dependable online information. Lisa provides several useful resources for parents and their teens, and offers a variety of approaches to take when broaching the topic. Click here to read the column in its entirety.

Hope Murphy, Director of Studies for K-8 at Laurel, recently spoke with Cleveland Magazine for an article on the "four C's", critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity, and how each of these play a vital role in Laurel's curriculum and how students learn from a young age.

The story highlights how, using an interdisciplinary approach, Laurel School encourages the Four C’s by taking one theme and extending it across subjects. Hope is quoted saying "As early as age 5, students recognize the power of their own voice and of adults and older students to listen to them. They learn the importance of bigger questions and the broader community." In the article, she goes on to talk about how social emotional development is a key focus for early learners. Kindergarten teacher Nicole Franks and First Grade teacher Laura Marabito are also quoted in the story, highlighting examples of how the four C's play out in the classroom.

"Kindergartners at the Shaker Heights girls’ school learn about animals in the rainforest and think critically about the question: “How does where the animals live affect how they live?”  

They research the subject in a science lab and then go on a field trip to visit animals at the RainForest at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. In class, kindergartners use their artistic skills to build a habitat that represents the rainforest environment.  

“Both the art teacher and the science teacher help draw out the girls’ understanding of an animal they have researched,” says Laurel kindergarten teacher Nicole Franks. “They supplement what students are learning in their homeroom about regions of the world through reading literature or nonfiction about the region in language arts and social studies."

Click here to read the full article.

 

 

  • November 2017
    • FriNov24 Thanksgiving Holiday: NO CLASSES - BUILDING CLOSED
    • SatNov25 MS Homework-Free Weekend
    • WedNov29 Junior Chapel and Reception (US Formal Uniform) CHANGED: Time originally noted (8:00 a.m.) was an error. 10:20 AMLyman
    • ThuNov30 Primary Winter Celebration 1:30 PMLyman
  • December 2017
    • FriDec01 Primary Winter Celebration 9:00 AMLyman
    • MonDec04 Music Academy Recital (Pre-K-Gr. 2) 4:00 PMLyman
    • MonDec04 Music Academy Recital (Gr. 3-Gr. 5) 5:30 PMLyman
    • MonDec04 Music Academy Recital (Gr. 6-Gr. 12) 6:30 PMLyman
    • TueDec05 Protege Dinner 6:30 PMLyman
    • ThuDec07 MS Music Celebration 7:00 PMLyman
    • FriDec08 Grades 7 & 8 CCIS Social at Ratner 4:00 PM to 6:00 PMRatner

Why Laurel?

At Laurel, our expectations are high and our enthusiasm for highly motivated girls is boundless. As a nationally respected, academically renowned girls’ school (Kindergarten – Grade 12 with a coed Pre-Primary), we take a student from where she is to where she wants to go.

Our commitment to innovation and the best practices in girls’ education, informed by data-driven research, as well as to interdisciplinary, experiential and community-based learning, is what sets us apart. What do parents and students tell us over and over? That no one is invisible at Laurel School: we know our girls well – socially, emotionally and academically. Below is just a sample of the many reasons Laurel is the private school that knows girls best.

Laurel's Mission and Values

Mission:
To inspire each girl to fulfill her promise and to better the world.

Values Statement:
Committed to building a just and inclusive world, Laurel girls are courageous, creative, ethical and compassionate.

Laurel's Center for Research on Girls

Established in 2007, Laurel’s Center for Research on Girls (LCRG) influences every aspect of the Laurel community: the faculty’s professional development centers on research about how girls learn; Laurel’s parents benefit from research-based advice about how they can help girls grow; and Laurel students reap the academic rewards of curricula based on cutting-edge research.

In addition to putting the best research to work for teachers, parents and girls, LCRG sponsors original research studies on topics relevant to girls’ development and education. LCRG’s collaborations with researchers from around the country have resulted in numerous presentations at academic conferences and publications in respected research journals. Our most recent study, 21st-Century Athenas: Aligning Achievement and Well-Being — conducted in partnership with Dana Hall School (Wellesley, MA), Dr. Belle Liang of Boston College and Dr. Renee Spencer of Boston University — addresses a significant gap in research literature on stress, well-being and achievement in adolescent girls.

LCRG knows that in order to succeed, girls must be resilient. Laurel School’s curriculum supports LCRG’s five-part formula for building resilience in girls by cultivating creativity, growth mindset, purpose, self-care and relationships.

Two-Campus Advantage

Laurel’s two-campus advantage gives girls an edge by offering unparalleled academic and athletic learning experiences.

Our Lyman Campus in suburban Shaker Heights was built in 1928 and covers 11 acres. Our entire Pre-Primary through Grade 12 community shares one complex and our faculty and students delight in cross-divisional activities. Our younger students find role models not only in the adults who guide and encourage them, but also in the older girls. There is joy, energy and a sense of being a part of something larger than oneself that comes from being in an environment where curious three-year-olds look up to their Primary reading buddies, where an Upper School “cyber-safety” team works with Middle School girls on appropriate Internet behavior and where Kindergarteners sit in the laps of Seniors at assemblies.

Just seven miles east from our Lyman Campus, Laurel students immerse themselves in the natural world at our beautiful 140-acre Butler Campus in Geauga County. The interdisciplinary possibilities at Butler are limitless. In this vast outdoor classroom, students discover scientific and mathematical concepts, create nature-inspired art, poems, dance and music and practice stewardship of the environment. They challenge themselves on our superb Project Adventure Course, compete on our world-class athletics fields and work with Laurel’s strength and conditioning coach in our state-of-the-art fitness center.

While we benefit from being a two-campus school that provides flexible indoor and outdoor learning spaces, we are one school when it comes to our philosophical approach to our students.

Capstone Experience

Laurel School’s Capstone Experience, by design, will cultivate purpose, relationships and leadership using one of four lenses— Civic Engagement, Entrepreneurship, Global Studies, STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics). Capstone Candidates will explore issues through guided research, intellectual discussion, relevant internships and purposeful travel. Using expert guidance from mentors and support from cohort peers, each Capstone Candidate will create a Research Focus based on her individual interests and agency. This innovative program provides committed, interested students with opportunities to approach real-world issues with interdisciplinary, experiential and community-based strategies while building mentor and peer relationships. In developing a sense of purpose, meaningful mentor and peer relationships, and skills of leadership, Capstone prepares a Laurel girl “to fulfill her promise and to better the world.”

More information is available on the Capstone Experience page.

STEM and STEAM

One of the hallmarks of Laurel’s interdisciplinary learning program includes the highly interconnected STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) curriculum and research program. Our STEM Research class offers the opportunity for girls to learn and practice “the habits of the scientific mind” as they conduct their own scientific research project at Laurel or off-site. Students present their work at the Northeastern Ohio Science and Engineering Fair (NEOSEF), The Ohio Academy of Science District competition and other national competitions.

Our STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics) Initiative helps to further break down the walls between disciplines by explicitly integrating the arts and design into STEM learning.

More information is available on the STEM & STEAM at Laurel page.

Engineering

As a leader in STEM (Science Technology Engineering & Mathematics) education, Laurel is committed to exposing girls in all grade levels to engineering curriculum.

Primary School science includes the “Engineering is Elementary” curriculum designed by the Museum of Science, Boston and the National Center for Technological Literacy. Engineering challenges underpin many Middle School units of study, including designing better seed dispersal mechanisms in Fifth Grade science or assistive technologies in Seventh Grade science.

Laurel was one of the first girls’ schools in the country to offer an Upper School engineering program. The program offers four innovative courses, each of which allows girls to learn by doing. As a result of the program, more Laurel graduates have gone on to undergraduate and post-graduate engineering programs.

World Languages Program

Our World Languages Program reinforces our mission to empower girls to be global citizens. Laurel is the only school in Northeast Ohio to have the FLEX (Foreign Language Exploration) proficiency-based program offering Chinese, French and Spanish in the Pre-Primary and Primary schools. In Pre-Kindergarten, students have one trimester of each Chinese, French and Spanish. From Kindergarten through Second Grade, every girl is exposed to each language. Beginning in Third Grade, each girl chooses one modern language to study. If a girl starts a world language in Third Grade, she will be prepared for the equivalent third-year Upper School level class by the time she enters Ninth Grade, thereby allowing her the opportunity for more advanced language study in the Upper School.

One Schoolhouse

One Schoolhouse is a direct result of our expertise in how girls learn. In 2009, Laurel joined with three other girls’ schools to found One Schoolhouse (at the time, it was known as The Online School for Girls); today, over 100 schools have joined our consortium. Our position with One Schoolhouse offers our girls a wide array of course offerings and prepares them for online academia that they will likely encounter in their college careers and beyond. In the last six years, Laurel girls have studied AP Psychology, AP Computer Science, AP Macroeconomics and AP Statistics among others.

Design Thinking

For almost a decade, Stanford University has been teaching graduate school courses in Design Thinking; Laurel faculty began an exploration of the methodology in 2010, and as an institution, we’re committed to Design Thinking pedagogy. Students unleash their creativity as they solve problems using empathy, critical thinking and collaboration. Design challenges are geared to the specific abilities, areas of study and student interests found at each grade level. Our Collaboratory provides an exciting space for students to become engaged in Design Thinking, as well as to tinker and innovate.

Technology and One-to-One Program

Students in grades Five through Twelve participate in Laurel's One-to-One Program. This program provides students with their own computer, a learning tool enabling them to acquire and employ 21st century skills of creativity, collaboration, research and information literacy, design thinking, and self­ direction. These skills and more combine to prepare Laurel girls for the complex world of the future.

Fifth and Sixth Graders are issued Chromebooks®, while students in grades Seven through Twelve are issued MacBook Air® laptops. Primary Students use iPads®, and laptops, and Chromebooks®.

College Guidance

Our curriculum and commitment to academic excellence prepares Laurel girls for the top colleges and universities in the nation. The Ninth through Twelfth Grade college guidance curriculum guides students through applications, interviews and essays; we also address social and emotional readiness for college, money management and adjusting to life changes. The program emphasizes personal discovery and finding the best fit. Students learn that the college process should not be a means to an end, but rather part of a larger personal growth process.

Protege Internships

Protégé is our signature Upper School internship program. Students build an internship or a research assistantship in an area of strong, personal interest. These out-of-school learning experiences occur in semester or year-long formats, as well as during the summer or over MayTerm. They are recognized on the Laurel transcript. Examples include internships in architecture, research at the Cleveland Clinic or Case Western Reserve University and analysis at financial firms.

Passport Global Initiatives

Laurel’s Global Education Program supports cultural competence through trips, exchanges and curriculum. Educated global citizens bring a broader perspective to their studies and learn to interact with their peers in a global arena. Recent Passport trips have included destinations like France, Spain, Italy, New Orleans, China and Australia.

Service Learning

Intrinsic to Laurel’s fiber, service learning happens naturally and often. Primary School projects have included cleanup of a Lake Erie beach. The Middle School Service Learning Initiative allows girls to find like-minded peers and mentors: affinity groups have worked on projects in support of cancer research, facilities for disabled Americans, children’s issues, animal welfare and more. Upper School girls complete their community service requirement at a variety of local, national and international organizations.

Collaboration with Facing History and Ourselves

Facing History and Ourselves is an international organization whose mission is to engage students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of identity and history in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry. In 2014, Laurel became one of over 40 institutions, and the only Cleveland Counsel of Independent Schools (CCIS) school, that make up the Facing History Innovative Schools Network.

 

To speak with a member of our admissions team, contact us today.

An All-Girls’ Independent College Preparatory School for Grades K-12 and Coed Pre-Primary
Lyman Campus Butler Campus
216.464.1441


Laurel's Mission Statement:


To inspire each girl to
fulfill her promise and
to better the world. 

 

Pre-Primary and Primary
Open House

Saturday, January 6, 2018
9:00-11:00 a.m.
Lyman and Butler Campuses

More information and RSVP here

 


"Laurel transforms students into strong women through an exemplary education and an atmosphere built on growth." Caitlin Cronin '16


"During my time at Laurel, I developed the mental aspect of my tennis game -- staying focused and staying in every match. The support that I've gotten from my team and my coaches has really helped me to do that." Danielle Buchinsky '15


"Laurel encourages its girls to try things they think they can do, things they don't think they can do, and even things they never thought about doing." Jazlynn Baker '16


"Laurel is a place where almost every girl can find a home. The community here is extremely accepting and diverse, and every student has her own ideas and opinions that are valued by everyone."Rebecca Brichacek '16


"Confident, independent, open-minded, fearless. That's what comes to mind when I think of what Laurel has given to my daughters." Laurel Parent

 

“The greatest gift Laurel gave me was the gift of lifelong friendships with classmates, teachers and parents of classmates. We have a special bond based on our shared experiences.” 
Betsy Sweeney Backes ‘78

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