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Am I missing any schools that should be on our list?

soxmomsoxmom Registered User Posts: 738 Member
We've got the list narrowed down to 5 schools for my daughter to look at, and we're in the process of making interview appointments. But I just want to make sure that there aren't any other schools that might be a good fit that we're missing. The list right now is Hotchkiss, Loomis Chaffee, St. George's, Brooks, and Concord.
Here's how I would describe what she's looking for (in no particular order):
(1) coed (she refuses to even consider an all girls school, I've tried)
(2) not overwhelmingly large
(3) a strong community/family feel to the school (perhaps, though not necessarily, evidenced by a fairly compact campus)
(4) not a jock-dominated culture, and not cliquey
(5) some flexibility in the athletic requirements (i.e., allowing at least some of the requirements to be met by dance, drama, community service, yoga/fitness, or fairly laidback intramurals -- her main sport is gymnastics, which she'll give up when she gets to high school anyway, but she's not very interested in competitive team sports like soccer)
(6) a strong commitment to global/multicultural studies (ie, student travel opportunities, interdisciplinary studies)
(7) a strong humanities program (much more her interest than math/science)

Replies to: Am I missing any schools that should be on our list?

  • SevenDadSevenDad Registered User Posts: 4,267 Senior Member
    At the risk of being accurately labelled as a SAS fanboi, may I humbly and enthusiastically suggest St. Andrew's (DE)?
  • PelicanDadPelicanDad Registered User Posts: 536 Member
    My suggestions would be: NMH, Choate, & Middlesex.
  • soxmomsoxmom Registered User Posts: 738 Member
    @PelicanDad, can I ask why those schools? I don't know much about NMH, so I'll look into that. But my impression of both Choate and Middlesex is that they have a pretty strong sports-dominated culture. Yes, I know that M'sex has been trying recently to improve its reputation in the arts (just as Concord has been trying to improve its in athletics), but at least around the Boston area, the word on M'sex is that the arts-focus is perhaps a bit of lip service and it really is still a school best suited for jocks.
  • london203london203 Registered User Posts: 1,376 Senior Member
    As long as you are going to St. George's, maybe have a look at Portsmouth Abbey as well?
  • i70sbandi70sband Registered User Posts: 155 Junior Member
    Episcopal High School in Alexandria, VA. Like SAS it is one of three 100% co-ed boarding schools in the U.S. which intensifies the school's sense of community.
  • CroissantMiserCroissantMiser Registered User Posts: 165 Junior Member
    As a parent of a freshman at NMH, I back up Pelican Dad's recommendation. NMH certainly checks all of your boxes and our child's first 2 weeks have been great. I'm sure there will be bumps; however, the entire selection process was made easier for us because our dealings with NMH staff.
  • neatoburritoneatoburrito Registered User Posts: 3,449 Senior Member
    If you're willing to look beyond New England, do consider Mercersburg. It is easily possible to go four years without touching a sportball of any kind. Afterschool options include theatre, dance, jazz band, community service, outdoor education, etc. Between 4 and 0 workouts per week are required depending on the activity to satisfy phys ed requirements. Though they don't have gymnastics, the dance program does have an aerial program and there's always diving.

    Student travel is highly encouraged and well supported by the school. http://www.mercersburg.edu/Page/Academics/Break-Travel

    MAPS is a special two year program (Mercersburg Advanced Program for Global Studies) http://www.mercersburg.edu/Page/Academics/MAPS--SpringBoard

  • BlairParentBlairParent Registered User Posts: 58 Junior Member
    Blair, too, meets many of those needs. I am a huge Blair booster, and my child goes there. It is much less jock focused than some of the schools, but does have a strong athletic program that ranges from traditional team sports all the way to yoga and the like. Athletics and sports are required, although not every term and it can be recreational clubs for at least some of it, and 3rds for the rest. It is very, very community oriented and has that community/family feel. It may not have the marquee humanities program that Hotchkiss does (the whole integrated curriculum thing), but the academics are incredibly strong in the arts and humanities. Very strong theater program. Great public speaking and guest speaker emphasis. Good travel and service opportunities. It hits most of the points on your child's list. My son ended up at Blair after looking at all the schools on your list (along with may others) and visiting many. Blair was the first choice for us from the day we visited. I find it has a lot in common with Loomis and Hotchkiss, and to a lesser extent NMH and Concord (different things with each of those 4 schools). Academically Blair seemed to us to feel a lot like Loomis. In other ways it felt a lot like Hotchikss, but a bit less intense. St George's and Brooks never got a lot of traction with us - he didn't like them very much.

    My child sounds very much like yours, although mine was looking for strong sciences as well as strong humanities. Depending on your geographic focus it may or may not be of interest, but it is not that far from the Connecticut/NYC area. It has about 450 students. About 90 in the freshman class.
  • MoreACubMomMoreACubMom Registered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
    @SevenDad nothing wrong with fanboying. We are so fangirling with our new BS.

    If you're willing to consider the other Coast, our daughter's Cate (Carpinteria, CA) experience thus far seems to have met or exceeded all 7 of your criteria plus much more. The sense of community has been the biggest perk seeing how our child has been embraced (literally, a very "huggy" school) by students and faculty alike and how happy she is. In addition to the Outings program (1 mandatory trip per year and many optional ones on weekends throughout the year), there are a multitude of international service and travel programs offered by teachers, staff, etc. Humanities are very strong-one of the freshman English teachers is a published author with several NYT-critically acclaimed novels. Shockingly, so far my humanities-loving daughter thinks her Geometry teacher might be her favorite, and we've heard their math/science offerings are also strong. Isn't that what BS is all about--pushing them outside their comfort zone and seeing that there's such capacity to enjoy so much more than they expected?!? And the panoramic ocean view from the large campus is not too shabby either.
  • jdeweyjdewey Registered User Posts: 333 Member
    The Putney school is definitely all those things. You will see that immediately with a visit!
  • psparentpsparent Registered User Posts: 50 Junior Member
    Just wanted to add, my son is at Loomis and I find it very warm, caring, and family like. Kids are very supportive of each other and the adults are very supportive of the kids. We have been told (and some will disagree) that Choate is more sink or swim, more competitive internally, which we did not want. My son is pretty athletic but at Loomis you can do dance, yoga, etc. or arts/community service in lieu of athletics and you absolutely don't need to be on a team. I absolutely love the school.
  • theHYPtypetheHYPtype Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    I would second Mercersburg Academy. I am currently an 11th grader at the Academy and it is absolutely amazing. It fits all the requirements you have provided. It has the strongest sense of community I have ever felt; it is of so much importance that it is a strong admissions requirement to be able to provide something to the community. We have a 65,500 square foot center for the arts that is completely dedicated to every art imaginable, dance and drama being especially popular; our productions win awards every year. Also the Academy provides unique opportunities, next week we are hosting a Tai Chi master from China to teach anyone that is interested. Mercersburg also has a program called MAPS (Mercersburg Advanced Program for global Studies) which culminates in a month abroad. And break travel is especially popular. One of the many trips this year is a service trip to Malawi. Also, interdisciplinary classes are very common. They include religion classes, a class on the meaning of the universe, etc. Come for an interview/tour! I may be your tour guide!
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