Admissions > FAQ



Admissions FAQ
Q: What grades does Laurel School serve?
A: Laurel School is an independent day school for girls, Kindergarten through Grade 12, with a coeducational Pre-Primary program.
Q: Where is Laurel School located?
A: Laurel School has two campuses. The main suburban campus, located at 1 Lyman Circle, in Shaker Heights, OH is home to all four academic divisions and is set on 11 acres. The Butler Campus, which opened in 2002, is our “outdoor classroom” and is located at 7420 Fairmount Road, Russell Township, OH. The 140-acre Butler Campus of woodlands includes world-class athletic fields, a high and low ropes course, several hiking trails, an outdoor pavilion, our Magic Tree House, a yurt for Pre-Primary outdoor education and the 16,000 square foot Butler Center for Fitness and Wellness.
Q: Do the students wear a uniform?
A: All students in Kindergarten through Grade 12 wear a uniform. Laurel girls have worn uniforms since 1907. Wearing uniforms sends a powerful message to the girls that what our students think is more important than what our students wear. This strengthens the feeling of community. The style of uniform varies by division, and the students have a variety of options.
Q: What are the class sizes at Laurel?
A: In the Upper School, class size can range from five students in advanced level elective to twenty students in a foundational required course. In the Middle School, classes typically range from twelve to sixteen students. In the Primary, classes typically have ten to fifteen girls in each.
Q: How does Laurel School tailor curriculum specifically for girls?
A: At Laurel, we know girls: how they learn, what they think and feel, and what they need to thrive. Laurel School’s The Center for Research on Girls guides all that we do and allows us to educate our faculty on girls’ education and to train our teachers in methods that work best for girls. Our faculty members are experts on girls’ education.
Q: Where do Laurel School graduates attend college?
A: College placement is 100%. Our Class of 2014 was made up of 67 girls and included 6 National Merit Semifinalists and 6 National Merit Commended. When a young woman graduates from Laurel she has a solid academic background, support from the Laurel community and confidence to go to college and beyond. Our girls attend a wide variety of colleges throughout the country and internationally. Our experienced College Guidance Office has relationships with the college admissions officers and look to provide our students with the best fit for college, taking into consideration many factors.
Q: What options are available to students who are interested in more than just academics?
A: Laurel girls are not only smart, they have diverse extra- and co-curricular interests. Many are involved in athletics and the arts. Laurel offers eleven sports in the Upper School and nine sports in the Middle School. Over 70% of students participate in athletics. There are at least two theater productions each year in each of the Upper, Middle, and Primary Schools. In the Upper School, there are also over thirty student clubs and organizations, and each Laurel girl has a community service requirement she must complete before her senior year.
Q: What about educational opportunities outside the classroom?
A: Upper School students have opportunities for research and for internships through out Protégé Program. Laurel’s signature internship and research assistantship program - Protégé - enables each student to focus on her unique passionate areas of interest and build an internship or a research assistantship in that area of interest. While other schools fit students into pre-developed internships and research projects, Laurel stands alone in starting with the student - focusing on her - helping her follow the future that is calling her. These out-of-school learning experiences occur during the school year in semester or year-long formats, as well as during the summer, and are recognized on the Laurel transcript. Girls in Middle and Upper School travel on domestic and international trips throughout Passport Global Initiatives Program. The Passport Program is the opportunity to explore world curricula with trips, exchanges and community-based learning. Examples of past trips and partnerships include those in Botswana, China, Costa Rica, Honduras, Japan, Australia, Europe, Canada and Tanzania. Laurel has developed partnerships with schools and communities in other countries and Laurel’s curriculum actively cultivates students’ understanding of other cultures. The Passport Program is a way Laurel girls can truly act on our mission statement to “better the world.” In addition to travel, the Passport Program brings international girls to Laurel and partners with sister schools in other areas of the world.
Q: How committed is Laurel School to diversity?
A: Equity, inclusion and diversity are implicit in the mission of Laurel School. In order for each girl to fulfill her promise and to better the world, our curricula and learning opportunities inside and outside of the classroom are designed to inspire and engage while respecting multiple customs, traditions, values and perspectives. We understand that social identifiers such as gender, race, religion, socioeconomic status, family configuration, sexual orientation, ethnicity, ability and age impact our individual and collective experiences. We are, therefore, guided by Laurel’s values of courage, compassion and ethical action in embracing diversity.
Admissions Student to Student FAQ
Q: Why should a family consider sending their daughter to Laurel?
A: Families should consider sending their daughter to Laurel because by the time this is submitted, one of my teachers will have read over this, a peer will have edited it, a friend will have pointed out things that I should add into it, an administrator would have told me, "Way to go! I'm so excited for you," and a member of the kitchen staff will have given me a fist bump. They should know that the community at Laurel will care about them this much. They should send their daughter to Laurel because she can take two languages, crack jokes with her Chemistry teacher, have a teacher want to come in early so that the student fully understand a subject, or become Gandhi for a roundtable discussion. They should have their daughter attend Laurel because she will receive a high quality education where she doesn't just study to ace the test, but she studies for the joy of learning and is encouraged to do so. They should even send her to Laurel to take one of the great art classes like metals so she can learn to make her own jewelry. She should come to Laurel because she will not be judged for being "smarter than the boys", or struggling in class, or what she wears and how she looks, she will just be accepted. Laurel also offers a plethora of courses, so students can find themselves furthering their studies on specific fields they like with ease. Laurel has rich traditions that are humbling to be a part of, and Laurel is made up of people who are caring, outgoing, and supportive-student to staff. (Amy S. '16)
Q: Why did you choose Laurel?
A: Being a member of the Laurel community has been one of the best decisions I have made and has allowed me to grow into the person I am today. Laurel is a school unlike any other. It is a place where every single person is accepted for who she is. Having an environment where the faculty and staff are girls' biggest supporters is something that not many schools have to offer. To me, Laurel feels like a home away from home and I felt this the moment I stepped into the school. Many of the girls who didn't know me, reached out and started conversations. I felt so welcomed into this new community and I know that this is something extraordinarily special about Laurel. (Moira A. '16)
Q: What is your favorite Laurel tradition?
A: I think that our community is unique because of our traditions. Never do I feel so close to our peers and my school than when I am sitting at the Snowflake Assembly, when I am dancing with my class during Song Contest, or when the entire Upper School sings Silent Night together in a pitch dark room lit only by candles. Our traditions don't have the typically dusty, old feeling to them; each year, new girls read poems at the assembly, new grades show off their dance moves, and new voices join the song, but the one constant is that we are all together. (Hannah L.'16)