All-School Calendar
Ria Desai '19 was recently featured as an unsung hero in the Chagrin Valley Times for her local volunteer work and bone density research, which she presented at a recent American College of Rheumatology conference. In the article Ria explains that when a serious car accident sidelined her tennis season, she "Started working more with an organization called The Up Side of Downs that offers Buddy Up Tennis clinics to children with Down Syndrome in Northeast Ohio. She also increased her hours volunteering with Inner City Tennis Clinics, a summer camp for Cleveland children that incorporates tennis, literacy, wellness, poetry and fitness." 
In addition, Ria launched a STEM-based research project utilizing her Dream. Dare. Do. (D3) period time that looked at the relationship between physical exertion and bone density in girls. She states that, "It came from my mom always telling me to drink milk because of bone issues and a lack of calcium. And then, though I wasn’t playing at the time, I was still an athlete, so I combined those two ideas and developed the project." Ria is now working on turning the project into a manuscript and hopes that it gets accepted into a journal and paper. She also hopes to expand the study to include more ages as well as boys. Click here to read the full story.
On October 10, several members of the Laurel community, including 12 alumnae, spent the afternoon with students in Grades K-8 leading activities focused on financial literacy and entrepreneurship. The goal was to empower and spark entrepreneurial spirit in the students. Activities were designed by VentureLab and incorporated using the girls' resourcefulness, problem-solving skills and curiosity. Many of the activities focused on idea generation, creating a business model, design thinking and pitching. The Sun Press and Sun Messenger included a recap of this fun and engaging afternoon on their front pages.
Primary School teachers Shannon Lukz and Emily Felderman were both featured, along with several Grade Four students, in a recent Girls in STEM segment that aired on WKYC Channel 3. Shannon and Emily have been instrumental in designing and leading a month-long immersion learning unit at Laurel's Butler Campus called "Power & Purpose," which focuses heavily on science, math and the many components of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics) learning. Throughout the unit students surveyed the land and created topography maps, tested the water quality of Griswald Creek, and learned all about the mechanics of a bike, which they used as their main mode of transportation for the month. WKYC visited Butler on the final day of the unit to capture the work of the students, who designed and built the "Adventure Rivulet Bridge," which is now in use at Butler. Click here to watch the full story.

Maggie Hilkert '19 was featured in Currents Magazine highlighting her love for finance, which she discovered through her participation in Laurel's Capstone Experience. In her Sophomore year, Maggie traveled to San Francisco and after meeting a Laurel alumna who is a venture capitalist, stated that, "She had the coolest job I ever saw. I loved talking to her. I was fascinated with her job and that helped me narrow that aspect of my project." As Maggie progressed with her Capstone Experience, she "interviewed venture capitalists around the country, shadowed Cleveland-area business owners, interned at an equity research firm, and decided to start an Investment Committee at Laurel." The article goes on to say that, "Earlier this month, Maggie moderated a panel of women in finance as part of Laurel's Day of the Girl celebration which, this year, had a theme of financial literacy." 

Click here to read the full story.

The Cleveland Jewish News has named Jami Morris '21 as its Player of the Week. Jami earned the honors after finishing in a tie for first place at the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division II state girls golf tournament October 12-13 at The Ohio State University Golf Club’s Gray Course in Columbus. She shot a 73-74 for a total of 147, plus-7, tying for lowest score. In the article, Jami said she wasn’t surprised she performed so well in the tournament. "I think I worked extremely hard this past summer. I feel that all paid off and I hope to continue next year, and the year after, and hopefully in college. Except on the first day, I didn’t even think I was playing in the state tournament. Walking off the 18th green, I thought, 'I’m happy with how I played, I could have played better, but there’s always next year.'" 

Laurel golf coach Marti Hardy said she was impressed with Morris’s performance, but she wasn’t surprised. "I’ve watched her all along work hard to get where she has. I think the harder thing is, when you play at states, you’re not necessarily playing with the players that are scoring what you’ve been scoring the last day or so. It’s an unknown, they’re out there somewhere on the course playing. Maybe it’s a good thing that you don’t know, but I watched Jami just keep it all together really well and not doubt herself. I saw her hit two phenomenal shots that two golf pros who were near me said, 'she’s the real deal, she really knows how to play this game,' and it’s true."

Click here to read the full story.



Congratulations to these seven members of Laurel's class of 2019 who have received Letters of Commendation in recognition of their outstanding academic promise, based on their Preliminary Scholastic Achievement Test scores. More than 1.6 million juniors took the PSAT in 2017. Catherine Amaddio, Grace Cousens, Ria Desai, Meredith Hilkert, Cameron Kaye, Simran Surtani, and Daania Tahir all scored in the top 50,000 of those participants.

Early childhood education is just as rewarding for educators as it is for students. This was the theme in a recent Cleveland Jewish News article that featured interview excerpts from Laurel Prekindergarten teacher Kathryn Marshall. In the story Kathryn states that, "Children keep me in the moment and help me rediscover the joy of being in the moment. I get to have the same awe with children right there with them." She goes on to explain that she is "Always trying to find new, innovative ways to teach children. The sense of joy and wonder of living in the moment also translates into my life." Click here to read the full story, including the sage advice Kathryn would give her younger self.
Jami Morris '21, who competed in the Drive, Chip & Putt National Finals in Augusta earlier this year, recently conducted a Q&A with Cleveland Magazine where she talked golf, fashion, the perfect miniature golf hole design and her hobbies off the golf course. Her story was featured in the magazine's Private School Special Section. When asked what her favorite golf attire is she replied "I have these crazy bright pink shorts. If I had 20 pairs, I would wear them every day. They brighten my game and encourage me to be the best golfer I can be." She also touched on equality in her interview, stating that "Women should be able to play with the men, on the same courses and with the same yardages. That would be a big step up for women's golf, and we will rise to the challenge." 

Click here to read her full interview.  

Jackson to work together with Ann V. Klotz and Board members to maintain the Laurel School Mission

SHAKER HEIGHTS, OH – (August 22, 2018) Laurel School is pleased to announce Lynnette Jackson ’93 as the new Chair of the Board of Trustees. Jackson, a Relationship Manager and Vice President at Key Private Bank, has been on the Board since 2012, most recently serving as Vice Chair. Prior to joining the Board of Trustees, Jackson held the role of Laurel Alumnae Board President from 2009-2012.

“It is both an honor and a privilege to serve in this role as Board Chair,” said Lynnette Jackson. “It is an opportunity to give back to my alma mater who, through academic rigor, enriching experiences and leadership opportunities, has inspired me and my family to dream, dare and do. As Laurel embarks on its 125th Birthday, the work of this Board will certainly shape the next 25-50 years of the school.”

In her Relationship Manager role at Key Private Bank, Jackson delivers integrated strategies and forward-thinking, objective advice to her clients. These skills will continue to serve her well in her new role as Board Chair where Jackson will work closely with Laurel Headmistress Ann V. Klotz and other Board members to continue to set and maintain a vision and strategy for the school. Together, they will ensure sound financial management, appropriate stewardship of resources, and accountability towards goals.

“I am so pleased to be working hand-in-hand with Lynnette and the entire Board of Trustees to continue living Laurel’s mission and building on our long-term vision,” said Ann V. Klotz, Laurel Headmistress. “The Board has been instrumental in the development of our Strategic Roadmap and it is an exciting time for us as we embark on our next goal. I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together.”

Other updates to the Board include Kristine Swails Bryan ’80, who has been named Vice Chair. Bryan is an Equity Research Consultant with Private Harbour Investment Management, LLC, and has been a member of the Board since 2015, most recently serving as Chair of the Investment Committee. Megan Lum Mehalko ’83, Chaundra King Monday ’95, and Suzanne Schulze Taylor ’81, have all been newly elected to the Board with three-year terms commencing June 2018.


Founded in 1896, Laurel School is a nationally recognized school for girls in Kindergarten through Grade 12, with a coeducational Pre-Primary School. Its mission is “to inspire each girl to fulfill her promise and to better the world.”




Laurel's After School Coordinator, Tina Ohmart, was recently included in a Cleveland Jewish News article highlighting the importance of after-school programming and its benefits to kids. In the story she states that, "We have students who stay after school for supervised play and they hang out with their friends and develop emotional and social skills. And then there are structured activities where students can learn something specific as well. But across the board, there are social-emotional skills that can be learned. Everything else is a plus.”

She also highlights how after-school programming can be a great avenue for personal growth. Click here to read the full story.

  • December 2018
    • ThuDec13 Middle School Music Celebration 7:00 PMLyman
    • SatDec15 ISEE Testing for Prospective Students
    • MonDec17 Grade 1 Resilience Week Butler
    • TueDec18 Grade 1 Resilience Week Butler
    • TueDec18 Upper School Exams and Rehearsals Lyman
    • WedDec19 Grade 1 Resilience Week Butler
    • WedDec19 Upper School Exams and Rehearsals Lyman
    • ThuDec20 All-School Snowflake Assembly (Formal Uniform) 9:00 AMLyman, Tippit Gymnasium
    • ThuDec20 Upper School Winter Concert (Formal Uniform - Upper School Students Required) 7:00 PMLyman: Tippit Gymnasium
    • FriDec21 First Day of Winter
    • FriDec21 NO CLASSES for Pre-Primary, Primary and Grades 5-7

After School and Music Academy

Laurel School happily offers enriched, supervised after school care and classes for children in Early Learners through Eighth Grade from dismissal until 6:00 p.m., on days when school is in session. In order to provide the appropriate setting for each student, the programs are offered by grade level.

Download the After School at Laurel flyer.

Explore our 2018-2019 after school options.

M-F: Supervised Play [Early Learners-Grade 6]

Dates: August 22, 2018 – May 30, 2019
Day: Monday-Friday, 3:00-6:00 p.m.
Cost: Variable -- see registration link for details

Supervised Play meets in the Primary and Pre-Primary classrooms at Laurel which are conveniently located near our beautiful playgrounds and spacious Multipurpose Room. Classrooms are divided by grades to offer a quiet space for homework, a relaxing place to read a book, enjoy a snack or place to run and play. This option is open to students enrolled in Early Learners through Grade 6. Note: Supervised Play is only available on days when school is in session.

Students may drop into Supervised Play after other activities for an after-activity drop-in fee of $10.

Register for Supervised Play

M-F: Middle School Homework Room [Grades 5-8]

Dates: August 22, 2018 – May 30, 2019
Day: Monday-Friday, 3:30-6:00 p.m.
Cost: Variable -- see registration link for details

The Middle School Homework Room provides a supervised comfortable environment for students when they are not involved in an after-school activity to complete homework, enjoy a snack and a good book or play a relaxing game with a friend. This option is open to Laurel students enrolled in grades 5 through 8. Note: Middle School Homework Room is only available on days when school is in session.

Students may drop into the Homework Room after other activities for an after-activity drop-in fee of $10.

Register for Middle School Homework Room

M-F: Music Academy

The Music Academy is a year-long after-school program. Through the Music Academy, Laurel students and non-Laurel students may sign up for traditional private music instruction, Suzuki violin instruction and Rock Band classes.  Each Music Academy program consists of thirty lessons, two of which will be recital preparation classes, and two recitals. All lessons take place at Laurel’s Lyman Campus between the hours of 3:30 and 6:00. After School at Laurel offers child care coverage at a discounted rate to Music Academy students on the days of their lessons.

Traditional Private Lessons
Laurel School Music Academy offers private instruction in the following instruments: violin, viola, cello, guitar, piano, voice and flute. Our faculty members are accomplished performers and teachers with advanced degrees from highly reputable universities and conservatories. Many of our teachers are also on faculty at institutions such as The Cleveland Institute of Music, The Music Settlement, and Cleveland State University.
Cost: $1040 for weekly thirty-minute lessons (longer lessons are pro-rated).


Suzuki Program
More than fifty years ago, Japanese violinist Shinichi Suzuki realized the implications of the fact that children the world over learn to speak their native language with ease. He began to apply the basic principles of language acquisition to the learning of music, and called his method the mother-tongue approach. The ideas of parent responsibility, loving encouragement, and constant repetition are some of the special features of the Suzuki approach.

Laurel School Music Academy is pleased to offer Suzuki violin instruction. This after school program consists of weekly private lessons as well as a weekly group class. Suzuki lessons are offered to students ages four and older. Private lessons will be scheduled based on the availability of the teacher, student and parent. Group classes will be held between 3:30 and 4:15 on Friday afternoons. 
Cost: $1340 for weekly thirty-minute private lessons as well as weekly group classes.

For additional information, please email Cara Tweed.

Register for Music Academy

MONDAYS: Engineering Club [Girls, K-Grade 5]

Dates: Various four-week modules, September 17, 2018 - May 20, 2019
Day:  Mondays, 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Cost: $75 per module + one-time $10 fee

Join Classroom Antics Engineering Club! Through each module, kids explore a different type of engineering with a fun curriculum complete with hands-on, take-home projects. During the school year, each module will cover one of the following fields of engineering: mechanical, acoustic, meteorology, chemical, transportation and sports engineering. Designed for kids grades K-5, Engineering Club is the perfect way to introduce or further expose students to engineering concepts and a fun, new way of thinking!

Module 4: Crazy Chemicals (Chemical Engineering)
January 14-February 10 (Make-up session February 25 if needed)

Module 5: Planes, Trains, and Auto Engineers (Transportation Engineering)
March 4-April 15 (Make-up session April 22 if needed)

Module 6: Gold Medal Engineers (Sports Engineering)
April 29-May 20

Register for Engineering Club

MONDAYS: Stock Market Game [Girls, Grades 6-8]

Day: Mondays, 3:30-4:30pm
Dates: January 13-March 11
Cost: FREE
Instructors: Deborah Kidd and Kristine Bryan
What would you do if you were given $100,000? Would you spend it all at once? Would you think about putting some of it in the bank? We’d like to teach you how to invest it, so you might grow it. Through The Stock Market Game (SMG), you’ll gain an understanding of investing and how you might get your money to work for you. The Stock Market Game is offered by the SIFMA Foundation, an education organization dedicated to promoting knowledge and understanding of the financial markets for all individuals. Nearly 600,000 students play the game each year in the U.S. and around the world.
What’s investing? What’s a stock? How can you make money investing? Play the Stock Market Game and find out!
  • Week 1: What is a company? Which company’s products do you like better: Hershey Company or Tootsie Roll? Which would you choose to invest in?
  • Week 2:  What is a stock? Learn how you can become a part owner in companies like Hershey, Tootsie Roll, or Apple by investing in their stocks.
  • Week 3:  What is a stock quote and how can stock quotes help you find companies to invest in?
  • Week 4:  Learn how to choose and compare companies to invest in.
  • Week 5:  Your first trade! Learn how to actually buy a company’s stock.
  • Week 6:  Learn how to keep records of your investments and explain why you chose your stocks.
  • Week 7:  What is diversification? Here’s a clue: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket! And don’t put all your money in one stock.
  • Week 8:  Understanding stock market risks and returns. How can you lose money by investing in stocks? How do you know how much risk you are taking? How well did your stocks do?
Minimum enrollment 4 students / Maximum enrollment 15 students

TUESDAYS: Little Racquets Tennis [Girls and Boys, Pre-K-Grade 3]

Day: Tuesdays, 3:30-4:15 p.m.

Dates (winter): 9 Sessions, January 15-March 12
Cost (winter): $180

Dates (spring): 7 Sessions, April 9-May 21
Cost (spring): $140

This nationally-renowned program helps students progress through the beginning stages of tennis. Students are engaged in stimulating, playful activities that enhance their physical and emotional abilities.

A minimum of 8 registrants is needed to run the program. Maximum enrollment is 16 students.

Classes in May will be held on the outdoor tennis court at Lyman Circle. Please dress for the weather and bring a water bottle!

Register for Little Racquets

TUESDAYS: Adventure Girls [Girls, Grades 3-7]

Day: Tuesdays, 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Dates: 12 sessions, January 15-April 23 + Campout Friday, April 26-Saturday, April 27
Cost: $400

Instructors: Chuck Allen, Pre-Primary Physical Education & Experiential Learning / Shannon Lukz, Primary Faculty and Director of the NorthStar Collaborative

Experience the adventure that all of the girls are raving about! Students love their time in Adventure Girls as they cultivate their resilience through challenging games, indoor and outdoor activities, as well as adventure-packed field trips and an overnight camping trip at Butler Campus.

Research shows many benefits to being exposed to “stress episodes” in building resilience. Adventure Girls not only fills that role but also provides many opportunities for providing humor, which has also been proven to “convey intelligence…and confidence”.

The leadership and adventure skills developed in primary and middle school can be applied in our multiage Adventure Girls setting. This is a great way for adventurous 6th and 7th graders to sharpen both adventure, survival and leadership skills. The books The Gutsy Girl by Caroline Paul and Strong is the New Pretty by Kate T. Parker are two of the resources used during this semester experience. If you like being strong, courageous, spirited and brave, this is the group for you!

  • Please note that registration is first come, first served. Spots go fast!
  • Minimum enrollment 8 students / Maximum enrollment 50 students
  • Meets Tuesday 3:30-5:00 pm. Pick up on Field Trip days 6:30 or 7:00 pm / no additional cost for field trips

Register for Adventure Girls

WEDNESDAYS: The Business of Babysitting [Girls, Grades 5-8]

Day: Wednesdays, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Dates: 4 Sessions, February 2 - February 27
Cost: $100
Instructor: Jessica Zuik

The Business of Babysitting is a locally developed, comprehensive course in character development, professionalism, and safety/CPR training for tweens and teens created and taught through CLE Mommy, RN llc. The middle school age is when most parents start leaving their children home alone or even in charge of their younger siblings. As a Certified Pediatric Nurse, Shaker Heights School Nurse substitute, and American Heart Association CPR Instructor the facilitator personally developed the curriculum and workbook for this program to prepare young people for this task. This year it has been adapted into an after-school program in order to reach more children. The after-school program runs four weeks long, one hour each week. Below is a breakdown of the classes.

Day 1: Character building, how does this relate to babysitting?

Day 2: Resume building, safe advertising, interviewing tips and techniques

Day 3: Child development as it relates to safely caring for children of all ages

Day 4: First aid, AHA Friends and Family CPR instruction

Minimum enrollment 4 students / Maximum enrollment 20 students

Register for Business of Babysitting

THURSDAYS: Junior Adventure Girls [Girls, Grades 1-2]

Day: Thursdays, 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Dates: 9 Sessions, January 17-April 4 + Mini Campout on Friday, April 12 (no Jr. AG on February 14)
Cost: $300

Instructors: Chuck Allen, Pre-Primary Physical Education & Experiential Learning / Shannon Lukz, Primary Faculty and Director of the NorthStar Collaborative

After a wildly successful trial of Junior Adventure Girls in the spring, Jr. AG is back with a full session this fall! Junior Adventure Girls will be a modified version of Adventure Girls, continuing the tradition of challenging young girls to be strong independent thinkers and good friends. Most of all, we will have an amazing amount of fun and laugh a lot! Research shows many benefits to being exposed to “stress episodes” in building resilience. Junior Adventure Girls not only fills that role but also provides many opportunities for providing humor, which has also been proven to “convey intelligence…and confidence”.

We will meet in Mrs. Lukz’ room at 3:30 p.m. with pick up at the Pre-Primary entrance at 5:00 p.m.

Minimum enrollment 8 students / Maximum enrollment 20 students

Pick up on field trip days at 6:30 or 7:00 p.m. / No additional cost for field trip.

Register for Junior Adventure Girls

THURSDAYS: Google Coding [Girls, Grades 4-6]

Day: Thursdays, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Dates: 16 sessions, January 17-May 16
Cost: FREE

Instructor: Deva Walker, Pre-Primary and Primary Librarian

Join us each Thursday in Lake Library as students learn computer programming using Scratch. Students practice problem-solving, build their growth mindset, and learn to create, rather than simply consume technology. Students will create projects based on a theme of their choice, and showcase them for friends and family at the end of the semester.

Minimum enrollment 4 students / Maximum enrollment 20 students

Register for Google Coding

THURSDAYS: Laurel Chorale [Girls, Grades 5-8]

Day: Thursdays, 3:30-4:15 p.m.
Dates: 10 sessions, January 10-March 14
Cost: $200

Instructor: Dr. Eve McPherson

Join the Laurel Chorale! Middle School students will have the opportunity to delve deeper into the techniques required for healthy and beautiful singing.
Girls will learn a solo and collaborate with classmates on works for a small choral ensemble. They will present an informal recital during their last class. Dr. Eve McPherson, the Music Academy’s private voice instructor, will lead this weekly class.

Minimum enrollment 3 students / Maximum enrollment 20 students

For additional information, please email Cara Tweed at

Register for Laurel Chorale

FRIDAYS: Choral Explorations [Girls, Grades 3-4]

Day: Fridays, 3:30-4:15 p.m.
Dates: 6 Sessions, January 11-March 1 (no class on February 1 and 15)
Cost: $120

Instructor: Dr. Eve McPherson

Join Choral Explorations! Third and Fourth Graders will have the opportunity to delve deeper into the techniques required for healthy and beautiful singing. Girls will learn a solo and collaborate with classmates on works for a small choral ensemble. Students will present an informal recital during their last class. Dr. Eve McPherson, the Music Academy’s private voice instructor, will lead this weekly class.

Minimum enrollment 3 students / Maximum enrollment 20 students

For additional information, please email Cara Tweed at

Register for Choral Explorations

After School at Laurel Terms and Conditions

Days/Times: After School at Laurel follows the standard school calendar. When Laurel School is in session for only half a day or is not in session at all, After School does NOT meet. After School at Laurel does NOT meet on the last day of school.

Pick-Up: Pick-up from all Classes, Supervised Play, and the Middle School Homework Room is in Laurel’s Pre-Primary Circle. Please call 216-455-0153 to have your child escorted to the Pre-Primary door. Late pick-up fees will be levied. Late pick-up = $25 in 15- minute increments past 6:00 p.m. All payment is handled online.

Questions? Contact Tina Ohmart at

Laurel School reserves the right to cancel any class due to insufficient enrollment, at which time refunds will be given. No refunds or adjustments will be made after classes begin. There are no adjustments, refunds or discounts for absences in Supervised Play, Middle School Homework Room or any classes.

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

Laurel's Mission Statement:

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


Pre-Primary & Primary School
Open House

Saturday, January 12, 2019
9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Lyman Campus

More information


"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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