2/1/19—The National Coalition of Girls’ Schools is partnering with eight member schools in the greater Boston area to host a Girls’ School Advantage advocacy outreach event. Prospective families and community-based organizations are invited to learn about the effectiveness and unique environment of all-girls schools. The program will featured remarks from Natalie Demers, Director of Research Initiatives & Programs at NCGS, and a Q&A panel of student representatives from each of the participating schools followed by a school fair.
Girls’ School Advantage: Boston
Sunday, March 31, 2019
1:00 – 3:00 PM
University Hall Amphitheater (2nd Floor)
1815 Massachusetts Avenue
Participating schools include Academy at Penguin Hall, Dana Hall School, Dexter Southfield, Montrose School, Nashoba Brooks School, Newton Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, Notre Dame Academy, and The Woodward School.
1/30/19—Ashley Hall, the only independent girls’ school in South Carolina, recently opened Warren Street House, a new Humanities center and a signature component of a $10 million investment in the redesign of the school’s historic urban campus. The renovation of six historic buildings to repurpose nearly 40,000 square feet of state-of-the-art classroom, laboratory, and collaborative environments delivers on the school’s commitment to deep learning, healthy development, high achievement, and community impact.
At the same time, Ashley Hall Head of School and NCGS Trustee Jill Muti also announced the school’s bold plan to expand its footprint globally with the launch of a new Italian campus in Charleston’s cultural sister city of Spoleto, Italy. The campus will provide Ashley Hall students, teachers, and alumnae with immersive education opportunities that connect languages, the arts, and sciences against the backdrop of a historic center of creativity. The Spoleto campus is part of a national initiative—spearheaded and led by Ashley Hall and two other independent schools, The Culver Academies and Rabun-Gap Nacoochee School, under the umbrella of Spoleto Study Abroad—to fully utilize the campus throughout the year by like-minded, independent schools.
“There has never been a more important time for young women’s voices to be heard, and Ashley Hall’s dynamic education in Charleston and abroad prepares our students to be self-reliant, independent thinkers in our complex global world,” Muti said.
1/24/19—St. Mary Academy-Bay View will become the first elementary/secondary school in Rhode Island to obtain a state-of-the-art Anatomage Table—a groundbreaking scientific device that will vividly enhance instruction and learning within Bay View’s STEM-focused courses and programs.
Spanning 81 inches in length and providing the hands-on functionality of a tablet, the Anatomage Table offers a captivatingly interactive experience of anatomy and physiology that will benefit Bay View students of all ages. “With the Anatomage virtual dissection table, our students will be able to visualize and understand anatomical structures and interrelated concepts in as lifelike a manner as possible,” said Dr. Janell Johnson, the school’s Science Department Co-Chair. “This is a privilege usually reserved for medical and graduate students as well as organizations such as the Mayo Clinic.”
Sr. Marybeth Beretta, President of St. Mary Academy-Bay View, noted, “Our responsibility as educators is to facilitate the learning of our students—to not only ensure that we are providing them with the tools and skills necessary for present and future success but to stretch the scope of their imagination and personal potential. Acquiring an Anatomage Table at Bay View is a significant step in on our ongoing efforts to enhance the student experience in every way possible.”
1/23/19—St. Margaret’s School (SMS) has announced the appointment of Sharon Klein as the next Head of School, effective August 2019.
Klein is a member of the Board of Directors for CAIS (Canadian Accredited Independent Schools). She has served on the CAIS Strategic Planning, Standards, and Evaluation committees, and is a certified Fierce Conversations Facilitator, and holds National Coaching Certifications in four sports.
For the last four years, Klein has been the highly successful Head of School at St. George’s School (STG) in Montreal, Quebec, a leading progressive, co-educational school. She led the school through a strategic planning process, enhanced STG’s reputation with the creation of a new branding and marketing campaign, and developed a campus master plan initiating a $10 million capital campaign.
The SMS Search Committee was most impressed by Klein’s leadership skills and her commitment to all-girls education. “What I have learned over my tenure as an educator is that the culture of the school is of the utmost importance,” said Klein. “All students learn best in an environment where they feel respected, encouraged, and supported—one where they cite their relationship with their teachers as what they love best about their school… I care deeply about creating confident and inspiring women who will lead in whatever way they choose.”
1/5/19—A student at Girls Preparatory School (GPS) will travel to the 2019 #HouseofCode reception in Washington, D.C., as the winner of Tennessee’s Third District’s Congressional App Challenge. Seventh-grader Emerson C. won the competition with her game app, Litter Awareness, which features a polar bear that has to traverse a maze to reach her cub without getting caught in litter. If the polar bear entangles itself in litter, a message pops up regarding the dangers of environmental degradation.
Emerson designed the educational app through her Design & Discovery class taught by Karen Richards, GPS computer science teacher. “Emerson 100 percent deserves this win,” said Richards. “She had a vision of what she wanted to do from the very start. She started with a simple maze and gradually grew its difficulty over time. Emerson cares deeply for the environment. She worked diligently during class time, came to help classes, and even came to my room during a couple of her study halls to fix bugs along the way.”
Emerson’s success reflects GPS’s commitment to encouraging girls in STEM-related fields. Dr. Autumn Graves, Head of GPS, said, “We are so proud of Emerson—for her creativity and her passion for programming and the environment. Beginning in middle school, our students are given many opportunities to shine across the STEM fields, and Emerson approached the app challenge with much enthusiasm and support from her teacher.”
12/19/18—Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women unveiled plans for its new Cheryl Speranza Leadership Institute, a program launching in fall 2019, to recruit and mentor racially and socioeconomically diverse young women. The initiative is being funded thanks to a generous gift of more than $1.2 million from the Speranza family and the Cheryl and Paul Speranza Foundation. The late Cheryl Speranza was a 1965 Mercy graduate with a passion for serving others. Her husband Paul shared the couple’s commitment to Mercy, “One thing we saw over and over (in traveling across the country) was a lack of women of color in any high leadership positions in any segment of society…I’m stating the obvious, but it’s true. …We felt so strongly about Mercy and what Mercy can do for young women, and it all came together.”
The Institute will fund more than eleven “emerging leaders from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds, such as young women with limited financial and emotional support.” Scholars will gain access to mentors and tutors, will partake in a leadership development curriculum, and receive life and career assistance throughout college, graduate school, and beyond.
Christian Jensen, Mercy’s vice president of institutional advancement, said “[The Speranza’s giving] is a lot bigger than 11 scholarships. They’re going to touch lives and inspire generations of future leaders.”
12/11/18—Lincoln School recently announced the formation of its Strategic Advisory Board, a committee made up of nine national and international leaders, experts, and innovators. The board members range from former White House Chief of Staff, Kenneth Duberstein to the founder of Girls Who Code, Reshma Saujani. Together, they will offer advice and counsel to Lincoln’s Head of School, Suzanne Fogarty, on matters related to mission, curriculum, and strategic plan; identify and engage potential partnerships and opportunities for the school; and assist in cementing Lincoln School’s reputation as a top all-girls independent school founded on Quaker values.
Fogarty noted, “Lincoln School has long been an academic powerhouse where girls thrive, and the intellectual strength and professional accomplishments of the new Lincoln School Strategic Advisory Board takes our mission to the next level. This carefully assembled group of global thought leaders were appointed because of their expertise in their chosen fields, and their dedication to preparing Lincoln students for the world, and the world for Lincoln students.”
11/28/18—Stoneleigh-Burnham School (SBS) Debate and Public Speaking Society member Jacqueline “Jax” M. ’19 recently qualified for the 2019 World Individual Debating and Public Speaking Championship in Toronto, Canada, where she will represent the U.S.
SBS’s Debate and Public Speaking Society is one of the school’s signature programs, and Jax joins an elite group of former competitors. She is the 18th debater in the school’s history to qualify for the world competition.
Jax qualified for the championship during the International Independent Schools Public Speaking Competition held in Toronto earlier this fall, where she and SBS teammates Beatrice B. ’20and Joy L. ’20 competed with about 150 students from 47 schools from around the world.
Jax placed as a finalist in two categories, Impromptu Speaking, in which she finished 5th overall and 1st among U.S. schools, and Interpretive Reading, in which she finished 11th overall and 1st among U.S. schools. Her Interpretive Reading was so powerful that one of the judges reached out to SBS co-coach Karen Suchenski to say, “Congratulations on a spellbinding presentation…What an amazing performer you have on your hands … Her reading simply blew me away. I have never seen/heard anything like it.”
11/16/18—Girls Preparatory School (GPS) will host an entrepreneurial event for girls, MBD: Girl Edition. Mighty, Brilliant, and Determined girls, ages 7-17, are invited to sell their products and services at the Holiday Marketplace in early December.
Presented by GPS, Public Education Foundation, and The Company Lab, the girls’ Holiday Marketplace will provide mentors to help the girls prepare their booths for the event. The Chattanooga Public Library will also offer three free workshops prior to the marketplace for participants to learn about “Branding Basics & Targeting Your Audience,” “Booth Display & Seller Psychology,” and “Finishing Details.”Thanks to the support of sponsors and donors, girls can focus on creating and selling their merchandise without having to worry about booth fees.
The Holiday Marketplace is only one component of MBD: Girl Edition, a program designed to empower girls to learn what it takes to start, manage, and grow a business while developing critical-thinking and relationship-building skills. Through the multi-faceted curriculum, which includes the Holiday Marketplace, a 24-hour business hack-a-thon, and an interdisciplinary summer course, girls can develop their resilience, creativity, and teamwork.
“We believe in fostering the entrepreneurial spirit in every girl and offer MBD: Girl Edition events to encourage girls across our community to get creative and learn what it takes to run their own business,” said Lauren Hayes, event coordinator.
11/9/18—The Harpeth Hall School Board of Trustees announced the appointment of Jess Hill as the next Head of School, effective immediately.
Jess is an experienced leader in girls’ education and is a frequent speaker and panelist at national independent school conferences. Her expertise and commitment to the Harpeth Hall community has been evident for over two decades. She currently serves as the interim Head of School and previously served as Director of the Upper School from 2005-2017 after teaching Upper School math for a decade.
Harpeth Hall Board of Trustees Chair Jane Berry Jacques noted, “Mrs. Hill’s commitment to girls’ education along with her collaborative leadership style, strategic focus, and passion for lifelong learning will enable her to lead Harpeth Hall and to continue Harpeth Hall’s forward momentum into the future.”
11/8/18—St. Paul’s School for Girls (SPSG) recently announced the appointment of Ereni Gleason Malfa ’89 as the next Head of School effective July 1, 2019.
Ereni is a lifelong educator and school administrator with 24 years of distinguished service at Roland Park Country School where she served in a number of roles, most recently as Head of the Upper School. With the recent unification of the Boards of The St. Paul’s Schools, Ereni arrives at an important moment for SPSG, and she looks forward to capitalizing on coeducational opportunities while still preserving the distinctive culture and traditions of the all-girls school.
As an SPSG alumna, Ereni already feels a deep affinity for the school, stating, “My years as a student at St. Paul’s School for Girls helped shape who I am today. SPSG fostered in me the confidence to take risks. It was in those very classrooms, hallways, and playing fields that I learned the true meaning of respect and integrity. I was challenged to think deeply and act with compassion and empathy. In today’s complex world, the school’s continued commitment to fostering the intellectual curiosity, creativity, and spiritual growth of girls and young women sets its graduates on a path of purpose and meaning… I am truly overjoyed to be returning home to SPSG.”
11/5/18—The Hockaday School in Dallas, Texas, recently launched the Institute for Social Impact, an expansion of the school’s service learning program designed to empower students with the essential tools and life experiences necessary to lead lives of purpose and positive influence.
The Institute will allow students to engage with diverse partners, learn from civic leaders, and tackle projects to make a direct impact on the organizations and the people in the surrounding community. Based on the four pillars of Service Learning, Community Service, Community Engagement, and Social Entrepreneurship, the multi-faceted Institute will expand the experiential and real-world learning opportunities for students through new and existing partnerships with fellow schools, non-profit organizations, local businesses, and other community groups.
Students will be able to explore the intersection of community engagement and problem solving through projects ranging from “Developing Solutions to Water Issues Impacting Dallas” at a local farm to “Increasing STARR Results through Fine Arts Partnering ” at neighboring schools to “Solving Environmental Issues through Strategy” at the Dallas Zoo. These carefully designed projects and experiences will provide Hockaday students opportunities to test what they are learning in the classroom, tackle tough problems, learn to work in teams, cultivate empathy and respect for others with different backgrounds and expertise, build character and confidence, and explore their purpose in the world.
A recent alumna reflected the institute, “Prepared me to lead a life of purpose and impact. It’s more than just making the grade. …I want to help share my knowledge with others and make the world a better place. Girls are really going out there and doing amazing things with what they know.”