We know girls best!

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.

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.

Reasons Why Laurel:

List of 15 items.

  • 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 parents benefit from research-based advice about how they can help their daughter grow.
    • 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 the edge by offering unparalleled academic and athletic learning experiences.

    Our Lyman Campus in suburban Shaker Heights opened 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 150-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.
  • 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 on STEM and STEAM in each school division is available on the STEM and STEAM at Laurel page.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Capstone Experience

    Laurel School’s Capstone Experience, by design, cultivates purpose, relationships and leadership using one of four lenses—civic engagement, entrepreneurship, global studies and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics).

    Capstone Candidates 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 creates 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
  • Protege Internships

    Protégé is Laurel's 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 during Dream. Dare. Do. (D3) period time. 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, Peru and Australia.
  • One Schoolhouse (Online Courses)

    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. Through One Schoolhouse, Laurel girls have studied AP Psychology, AP Computer Science, AP Macroeconomics and AP Statistics among others.
  • Service Learning

    Intrinsic to Laurel’s fiber, service learning happens naturally and often.

    Primary School projects have included cleanup of Lake Erie beaches and creating holiday greetings and placemats for Meals on Wheels recipients.

    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.
  • 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 French and Spanish in the Pre-Primary and Primary schools.

    In Pre-Kindergarten, students have one semester of each French and Spanish.

    From Kindergarten through Second Grade, every girl is exposed to both French and Spanish.

    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.

    Additionally, as girls journey from the Primary School into the Middle and Upper Schools, she has the opportunity to explore additional languages such as Chinese, Latin and Hebrew.
  • Design Thinking

    For over 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, Laurel is 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®, laptops, and Chromebooks®.

    Please see our Technology page for even more information.
  • 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.

Upcoming Admissions Events

List of 3 events.

  • Oct

    Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE) Test Prep for Prospective Students, Grades 7-12

    Laurel School in conjunction with Rose-Marie Janesz, President of Test Preparation & Tutoring Services, will offer ISEE test preparation for students applying to grades 7-12. Hosted by Laurel, Rose-Marie Janesz will offer students the opportunity to learn how to prepare and score higher on the ISEE middle and upper-level exam. The test preparation class is $75 and is to be paid at the door.
  • Oct

    Grades K-12 Open House

    Connect with current students and parents, engaging faculty and dynamic staff as you tour Laurel School. Laurel’s K-12 Open House includes a presentation by Head of School Ann V. Klotz and opportunities to learn more about our curriculum, special programming, the admissions process and financial assistance. Our 150-acre Butler Campus, including the 16,000-square-foot Alice Lehmann Butler Center for Fitness and Wellness and yurt classrooms for grades 3-5, will also be open for prospective families to explore.
    Lyman & Butler Campuses
  • Oct

    Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE) Testing for Applicants, Grades 5-12

    The Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE), is a highly regarded and widely accepted test for entrance into top-performing independent schools around the world. Laurel requires the ISEE for all applicants to Grades 5-12. For most information, please visit https://www.erblearn.org/families/isee-by-erb.
    Lyman Campus

Contact Admissions:

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.
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