All-School Calendar
  • May 2017
    • MonMay22 Dare Week
    • MonMay22 Gator Golf - Laurel Athletic Booster Golf Outing Mayfield Country Club
    • MonMay22 Grade 7 Archaeology Dig Butler
    • MonMay22 US May Term

The Cleveland Jewish News recently spoke with Leighann DeLorenzo Laurel's Upper School theater director, who began teaching a Testimony Theater course this semester after visiting Israel in January 2016. In Testimony Theater, survivors of the Holocaust are paired with young people, and the survivors tell their stories. The students then write the stories in a theatrical framework and perform an original theater piece based off the story. On May 4 the 12 students enrolled in Testimony Theater performed the stories of three survivors for a full house. Leighann was quoted in the story saying, “As we move forward as a community, it’s also about extending that lens forward into the now, into the present, whether that has to do with the current refugee crisis, civil rights, equal rights, any other movement where we’re really talking about people that are marginalized." She said having her students learn the stories of these survivors was an important part of their education. “We can really use these painful stories of yesterday that are also incredibly inspiring and really they can be transformative for our students today and turn them into the upstanders they should be and inspire them in their education at Laurel." Click here to read the full article. 

Playhouse Square announced its Dazzle Awards nominees on April 28 and we are excited to share that Nora Hyman '17 received a John and Patricia Chapman Best Actress nomination for her role as 'Audrey' in Laurel's production of Little Shop of Horrors! The Playhouse Square website states that "The Dazzle Awards aim to inspire and honor excellence in high school musical theater, and to recognize the importance of musical theater and arts education within the Northeast Ohio community. A panel of adjudicators attend one production at each participating school, provide educational feedback on the official evaluation form and determine nominees and awards for participating schools. This regional program culminates at the Connor Palace with the Dazzle Awards, modeled after the Tony Awards®, to recognize outstanding musical theater productions and students. The winners in the Best Actor and Best Actress category will have the opportunity to participate in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City." The Dazzle Award winners will be announced on May 20, 2017. The grand prize winners in The John and Patricia Chapman Best Actor and Best Actress categories will go on to represent Northeast Ohio at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, also known as “The Jimmys,” in New York City, presented by The Broadway League.   

Laurel School's Annella Fernandez '17 is being recognized by the National Alliance on Mental Illness Greater Cleveland (NAMI GC) for her efforts to raise awareness of mental illness among her peer group. Annella will receive the Mental Health Teen Award on May 5 during the NAMI GC Annual Meeting & Awards Ceremony. The Awards Ceremony will honor outstanding achievement in promoting and providing mental health services for individuals, families and organizations in the year 2016. Naturally drawn to the study of psychology, Annella has spent time shadowing a pediatric psychologist. In 2016 she wrote What I Learned and What You Need to Know: A Brief Introduction to Behavioral Disorders in Adolescents, a collection of vignettes about the patient cases she shadowed along with factual information about the mental health diagnoses. Congratulations to Annella!

Laurel Headmistress Ann V. Klotz recently lent her voice for NAIS (National Association of Independent Schools) Member Voices, a new podcast series about the individuals who make up the independent school community. Each Podcast features a discussion with a different staff member at an NAIS-member school about his or her role, challenges, successes, inspiration sources and more. Ms. Klotz was one of the first to launch in the series, which has been very well received within the independent school community. Click here to listen to Ann’s podcast on leadership, empowering girls and the ways in which the Center for Research on Girls fuels our practice at Laurel. 

Laurel School alum Marne Levine '88 was recently featured in a Wall Street Journal article highlighting her role as chief operating officer for Instagram. Ms. Levine, a former White House official, arrived in the Silicon Valley in 2015 and "has been helping Instagram mature into a full-fledged business." The article quotes Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s co-founder and chief executive, who calls Ms. Levine "'an efficiency guru' who has helped the app avoid some of the pitfalls of rapid growth."

Prior to joining Instagram, Ms. Levine served as vice president of global public policy for Facebook, where she "grew the policy team, which manages Facebook’s relationship with governments and responds to privacy laws and regulation, from fewer than a dozen people to more than a hundred." The article goes on to state that "once Ms. Levine moved over to Instagram at the beginning of 2015, she dove in with the creation of a formal budget, giving the company a comprehensive view of its spending for the first time. She also pushed to expand the Instagram partnerships team, which manages the app’s relationship with public figures, publishers and others to ensure that they continued to flock to Instagram. She helped hire influential figures such as Eva Chen, former editor of Lucky magazine, to oversee its fashion ties, and Lauren Wirtzer-Seawood, who led Beyonce’s digital strategy, to run music partnerships."

The article details Ms. Levine's path to success at Instagram. Click here to read the full story. 

Northeast Ohio Parent published an article in April highlighting "Ways Kids in Northeast Ohio are Learning to Help the Environment." The story highlights various local organizations that are working to preserve our environment with the support of kids. Laurel's Outdoor Pre-Primary School, which educates students age 3-5 outside year-round regardless of the weather, is detailed in the article. The piece focuses on how students develop an immense respect for living things, learn about habitats and ecosystems, and develop a stewardship and understanding of environmental responsibility through composting and recycling.

Audrey Elszasz, Outdoor Pre-Primary teacher and Outdoor Education Specialist at Laurel, is quoted in the story saying “above all, they learn to understand the human impact on the Earth and discover how we can interact with nature and do no harm. These students develop such a love for the planet and learn to think about how to always do right by it.”

Laurel parent Rebecca Coley says her daughter’s experiences with the program include “hiking to base camp and traversing down challenging terrain, being independent and excited to put on her gear and get muddy, catching salamanders with her bare hands, and investigating animal tracks.”

 

Laurel School was pleased to host Frank Bruni, New York Times Op-Ed columnist and author, on April 6. Mr. Bruni spoke to Laurel parents, faculty, staff, trustees and local alumnae on the college admissions mania and how where you go to college does not define you. The talk, based on his best-selling book, Where You Go Is Not Who You'll Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania, was a lively one attended by more than 250 people. 

Your Teen Magazine had a chance to speak with Mr. Bruni prior to his talk at Laurel and the resulting Q&A, titled How to Pick a College And Other Great Advice from Author Frank Bruni, which highlights the bias of early decision, recent changes in financial aid, open-mindedness and more. In this Q&A, Mr. Bruni states that "Education is about so very much more than the onramp to college or than college itself. It’s an ongoing, all-encompassing, lifelong thing."  

Laurel Eighth Grader Isabella (Izzy) A. '21 competed in the 2017 Ohio K-12 Chinese Speech and Essay Contest on April 8, 2017 at Cleveland State University. This annual competition is held for elementary, middle and high school students from Ohio. During the competition, students compete by either composing an essay or giving a speech in Chinese on a selected topic. The contestants are judged by experienced Chinese language teachers, and prizes are awarded during a ceremony at the end of the contests. Izzy competed among 22 students in the intermediate level for Grades 6-8 and placed second in her category! Congratulations to Izzy on this well-earned honor.  

 

A recent EdSurge article titled "What Would Happen if Learning in School Became More Like Working at a Startup?" highlights the abundance of startup and entrepreneurial programs springing up in and around K-12 schools across the country. The article states that "Successful students, like startups, are those who are resilient, constantly absorbing new information and challenging their assumptions. What’s more, an entrepreneurial culture, carefully scaffolded, can help schools transform and unlock learning in ways that more traditional coursework cannot."

Laurel physics teacher Taylor Kaar, who also serves as Director of Entrepreneurship, is included in the story, which highlights both the Capstone Experience and the Veale Venture Challenge, two entrepreneurship programs offered to Laurel Upper School students. Taylor is quoted saying, “At Laurel School, we know that being an entrepreneur is a mindset, one that requires resiliency, problem solving, and passion. These are skills and traits that we feel are universally desirable today, and we know that the skills a girl learns at Laurel School’s entrepreneurship offerings will be transferable to any field.”

Covering four years, the entrepreneurship category of the Capstone Program asks high school students to lead and drive their own learning. The Veale Venture Challenge, through a series of steps—including the development of a business plan and a presentation to investors—aims to help students start a business while they are still in the school.

Laurel students Grace Murphy '17 and Henley Schulz '18 recently earned National Silver Medals in the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Grace and Henley have been identified by panels of creative professionals as the most talented young artists and writers in the nation. This year's contest attracted more than 330,000 works of art and writing. Of these, only the top one percent were recognized at the national level.

Grace received a National Silver Medal for her earrings, titled Squiral. Henley was awarded a National Silver Medal in the Photography category for her color photograph titled Surrounded. Congratulations to Grace and Henley for their incredible achievements! 

  • May 2017
    • MonMay22 Dare Week
    • MonMay22 Gator Golf - Laurel Athletic Booster Golf Outing Mayfield Country Club
    • MonMay22 Grade 7 Archaeology Dig Butler
    • MonMay22 US May Term
    • TueMay23 Grade 7 Archaeology Dig Butler
    • TueMay23 US May Term
    • WedMay24 Grade 7 Archaeology Dig Butler
    • WedMay24 US May Term
    • WedMay24 Grade 9 Picnic for Class of 2021 and Families 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
    • ThuMay25 Grade 7 Archaeology Dig Butler
    • ThuMay25 US May Term
    • ThuMay25 Renaissance Faire Reception 5:30 PMLyman
    • ThuMay25 Grade 6 Shakespeare Play: "A Midsummer Night's Dream" 7:00 PMLyman
    • FriMay26 After School at Laurel Classes End

Learning Enhancement

Laurel School Learning Enhancement

Laurel students are active learners with a high level of commitment to their studies and the ability to apply their best efforts within the classroom and beyond. The school is committed to supporting each student’s academic growth and healthy social development.

We recognize that a wide range of learning styles exists among our student population, and that different learning styles benefit from different kinds of instruction and support. In order to support each of our students as vigorously as we challenge them, the school maintains a variety of resources to aid students with diverse learning styles.

Learning & Study Support

Learning Specialists are available to support student learning in Primary, Middle and Upper School. They help students obtain or strengthen the fundamental skills of learning and studying (organization, review, outlining). Typically the specialists work with the students individually or in small group settings during the school day. Support may be needed for an extended period of time or for just a few weeks. Our group of specialists are certified in all areas of education and truly care about the individual needs of all students and do support all types of learners (support and/or enrichment).

If a teacher or family raises concerns about a child’s academic progress, the individual student’s needs will be assessed by a team of learning specialists, the school psychologist and classroom teachers. The team will determine an initial plan of action after classroom observations have taken place in a variety of academic of settings. The plan may include any of the following:

  • Sharing detailed teacher or parent referral with the team
  • Progress monitoring (mini assessments over a designated period of time)
  • Short-term interventions by classroom teacher and/or learning specialists
  • If needed, further testing will be recommended

Psychological Support

The psychologists offer the following services to support the academic and personal growth of Laurel students:

  • Brief individual counseling, with the written consent of the parent or guardian, to assist with school adjustment or to support the efforts of an outside therapist
  • Emergency intervention with an individual or group of students as the need arises
  • Small group or classroom work to support healthy personal growth and development
  • Interpretation of outside evaluations for implementation within the school
  • Observation in classrooms
  • Maintenance of confidential individual testing records
  • Acting as a liaison with outside professionals to support the progress of students within the school
  • Consultation and resource sharing with faculty, staff and parents to support the growth and development of the students

Standardized Testing

The AIMSweb progress monitoring assessment is administered three times per year to students in grades K – 7 (K – 8 in school year 2012/2013). This assessment is used to monitor growth on a more regular basis which allows the learning enhancement team to closely watch all students’ progress and recommend further assessments when necessary.

In grades 4 – 8, all students take the appropriate grade level ERB (Educational Records Bureau) test. This test is administered annually and results are shared with each student’s family. Class results are used by faculty and administrators to evaluate the school’s program.

The tests that students take in grades 9 – 12 are ones required for college admission and Advanced Placement credit; they are the PSAT, SAT, SAT subject tests, ACT and AP tests. Each of these tests (with the exception of the PSAT) requires individual registration. If a student has a documented disability, she may be tested utilizing non-standard administration. The testing agencies that administer the tests mentioned above provide special testing arrangements for students with current (documentation must be less than three years old), documented physical, psychological and learning disabilities. Documented disabilities must be professionally diagnosed. Further, a student requesting non-standard administration should currently be receiving accommodations for in-school testing.

Individual Testing

The psychologists administer limited, individual testing in the Primary School, with the written consent of the parent or guardian, when specific information will assist with academic planning. Tests are selected in accordance with the needs of the individual student.

An outside referral will be recommended if a more extensive assessment is warranted. Individual psychological/educational assessments can be arranged through the student's public school district or through a psychologist in private practice. Laurel School psychologists do not diagnose learning disabilities and, therefore, testing must take place with an outside specialist.

Tutoring

When a student requires academic support beyond that which Laurel may provide using school resources, the Division Director or Director of Learning Enhancement may recommend a program of academic support to include work with an outside tutor, at the family's expense. Non-faculty tutors who work with students at the school are required to complete a formal personnel process.

Other tutorial arrangements that families develop for their daughters without consultation with the Division Director or Director of Learning Enhancement are viewed as separate from Laurel School. Faculty guidelines state that Laurel classroom teachers are not permitted to tutor for financial compensation any student currently in their classes or, during the summer, any student in the class she/he has just finished teaching.

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. 

 

All-School Open House

October 2017
exact date and time coming soon
Lyman Campus


"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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