Special Section

The Private School Primer

Finding the right independent school for your child takes careful planning.
By Rebecca Kirkman — October 2017

Carol Adams-Knight and her husband, Sydney Knight, took an approach to planning their children’s educational future that could only be described as methodical. And it paid off.

As her middle school-aged daughters neared the end of their educations at Trinity School in Ellicott City, which culminates at eighth grade, she and her husband began the process of choosing an independent secondary school nearly two years before their eldest, Sereena, graduated.

“We did start the process a little bit earlier than maybe most people—I’ve heard from other parents that I started too early,” says Adams-Knight. “But I wouldn’t change anything.”

“After all, this is one of the most important decisions you’re going to make as parents,” she says. “It’s going to affect your children for the rest of their lives.”

First, the couple created a matrix of criteria (single-sex versus coed, distance from home or work, class size, budget, etc.) and came up with a preliminary list of potential schools to see how they stacked up. “We also looked at the college matriculations, what types of clubs they had, and the travel-abroad programs,” adds Adams-Knight.

Starting early allowed them to narrow the list to a handful of the most serious prospects. “The earlier you start the process, the earlier you’re able to eliminate,” she explains. “So, by the second serious year, you’re focusing on three or four choices, not six or seven.” Ultimately, the family applied to five schools and enrolled Sereena and Caroline in The Bryn Mawr School, a nonsectarian school for K-12 girls in Baltimore, for the 2016-2017 school year.

While the family considered schools based on many criteria, one stood out from the rest.

“Fundamentally, we really wanted to see that the academic curriculum was challenging for the girls,” she says. “That was a very important criteria, and we knew that Bryn Mawr had a great reputation in terms of the challenging curriculum.”

Going Single-Sex

A closer look at education by gender.

“We bought into it,” says Carol Adams-Knight of her family’s decision to enroll their daughters, Sereena, 14, and Caroline, 13, in an all-girls environment at The Bryn Mawr School, a nonsectarian college-preparatory school for K-12 girls with a coed preschool located just north of Roland Park. Single-sex education wasn’t a “must” when it came to choosing a school, say the Knights, who live in Laurel and whose daughters previously attended Trinity School, a coed Catholic institution in Ellicott City. But Adams-Knight and her husband, Sydney Knight, were sold on the concept after attending seminars and reading studies that tout the benefits of an all-girls environment.

With so many options in the greater Baltimore area, it’s likely that an independent school search process will include the single-sex decision. But is it the right fit for your child?

Advocates for single-sex education point to the removal of gender barriers—specifically, that girls or boys are able to fill all roles. “Every opportunity here is filled by girls,” says Sue Sadler, head of school at Bryn Mawr. “The girls are the scientists, the girls are the leaders, the girls are the athletes, the girls are the captains.” In fact, 93 percent of grads from girls’ schools say they were offered greater leadership opportunities than peers at co-ed schools, and 80 percent have held leadership positions since graduating from high school, according to a survey of single-sex education graduates by the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools and the Goodman Research Group. 

Boys benefit, too. “With our students, you see that when they get here, they think about doing some things outside the box, in terms of what courses they take and what activities they’re involved in,” says Br. John Kane, FSC, president of Calvert Hall College High School, a private Catholic college-preparatory school for boys in Towson. “There’s no pressure to say, ‘Oh, you shouldn’t do that, that’s not what guys do.’ We have an extremely strong athletic program, but we also have extremely strong fine arts and theater programs that everybody is encouraged to become a part of.”

A common misconception about single-sex education is that students miss out on important social opportunities. But most schools today offer many chances to experience coed environments, both in and out of a classroom. While some prospective students worry that coming to Calvert Hall means four years without meeting girls, “That’s not the case,” Kane explains. “We have book clubs, we have social events, we have girls in our band program and theater program.” Come to a football or lacrosse game on a Saturday night and look out into the stands, he says. You’ll see plenty of young women in the crowd, too.

At Bryn Mawr, students in their junior and senior years take coed classes thanks to Tri-School Coordination, a partnership with Gilman School, a private K-12 school for boys, and Roland Park Country School, a private K-12 school for girls. Pedestrian bridges spanning Roland Avenue and Northern Parkway connect the three campuses. “First, with barriers to speaking up removed, they find their voice,” says Sadler. “Then, by the upper level, girls know their voice and they are getting some exposure to a coed environment.”

Educators at both boys’ and girls’ schools maintain that the environment can be the right fit for any child. “We would argue anybody is a good candidate for a single-sex education,” says Kane. “You’re not going to lose anything—in the process, you may find that there’s some great advantages to an all-boys school.” Sadler, at Bryn Mawr, agrees. “There’s just a freedom to find yourself in an all-girls school that I haven’t seen in a coed school. By removing the gender question, you never have to ask yourself, ‘Is this because I’m a girl?’”

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The Power of Independence

A personalized experience—for both children and their parents—is a hallmark of independent-school education. But what makes a school independent? According to the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), it’s the school’s philosophy (each is driven by a unique mission), as well as the way it is managed and financed (each is governed by an independent board of trustees rather than a public school board and supported by tuition and charitable contributions).

This independence allows schools to respond uniquely to each child’s needs. Other benefits include mission-driven education, high academic standards, small class sizes, excellent teachers, and diverse communities that value inclusiveness.

With dozens of these schools in the region—the Association of Independent Maryland and D.C. schools (AIMS) claims 123 member institutions, including a great many faith-based schools—there’s a perfect match for every child. But with so many options, finding the right fit for your family takes time.

To start, NAIS recommends creating a “wish list” to help guide your search. For instance, would your child thrive in a small or large community? Are you looking for day school or boarding school? Do you prefer a coeducational or single-sex environment? Would your child excel in any special programs, such as an emphasis in the arts or technology?

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Mount Washington parents Angela Lima and Sergio Lima Arroyo, for example, knew their active children would benefit from play-based learning, so, at each prospective school, they asked about how much time students typically spend being active or outdoors.

During the selection process, Angela Lima reflected on her own educational experience. “To me, elementary school was reciting poetry and doing plays,” recalls the mother of three. “We were looking for a school where every student gets art education integrated into every program.”

After looking into several options, including local public schools, Lima was won over by The Waldorf School of Baltimore (WSB), a coed independent day school enrolling students from nursery school through eighth grade in Baltimore’s Cold Spring-Newton neighborhood.

“We know adults in every walk of life who have gone through Waldorf schools that are productive and good human beings,” says Lima, three of whose four children, Giorgio, 8, Vincent, 6, and Lucia, 3, all attend WSB. Developed by Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner in 1919, the Waldorf educational method emphasizes holistic learning with a foundation in imagination and curiosity.

Lima found the active curriculum, which emphasizes introducing the right material at the right time for each child, to be a good fit for her “ants-in-their-pants” sons. “We love that kids can be kids—that they’re nurtured and honored and that instructors get to know each child through hands-on discovery,” says Lima. “They aren’t chided for not sitting still.”

But it was more than the school’s unique educational philosophy that made it a good fit. The Limas say they felt valued from their first interaction with admissions. “It wasn’t a turnstile,” says Lima. “We felt that we counted, and the relationship felt personal.”

Footing The Bill

How to afford an independent education.

There’s no getting around it, independent schooling is a financial commitment. In Baltimore, the median day school tuition clocked in at $27,601 for the 2016-2017 school year, according to the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS). And the costs are rising—in the past four years, median yearly tuition has increased by $3,755, from $23,846 in the 2013-2014 school year.

“Most middle-class families sending a kid to private school are going to have to make sacrifices,” says Baltimore-based financial advisor Gregory Gann of Gann Partnership. With this in mind, Gann, who sent his two children to private schools and is on the board of Monarch Academy, a Baltimore charter school, says it’s more important than ever for parents to do their due diligence before investing in private education. “Young families today should really be checking out that potential school,” he says. “If you can’t distinguish what your child is going to get at that private school significantly enough from what he or she would get at a public or charter school, I think today you really have to ask, ‘Is it worth it?’”

Still want to make the investment? Try these strategies to ease the financial burden.

Use a Payment Plan

Rather than paying a lump sum at the start of the school year, most private schools allow payment to be broken into 8, 10, or 12 monthly installments, usually with a small convenience fee.

Ask About Discounts

Live nearby? Enrolling multiple children? Work in education? Ask school financial aid representatives what types of discounts they offer—the answer may surprise you. At The Waldorf School of Baltimore, for example, full-time residents of the Cold Spring-Newton neighborhood get 5-10 percent off tuition, while a 25 percent discount is applied to a family’s third child to be enrolled if the family is not already receiving financial aid.

Apply for Financial Aid

There’s no harm in applying for financial aid, even if you don’t think you’ll qualify. Some schools offer scholarships based on merit and need. Ask prospective schools’ admissions departments to put you in touch with the financial aid representative, who can answer your questions and share important deadlines.

Shift Priorities

Some families may be able to find the funds to finance private education by making changes to their lifestyle. That could mean taking more affordable vacations, or holding onto the family car a few years longer before upgrading.

Making the Most of the Open House

Unlike public schools, which take in new students year-round, most independent schools follow an admissions process much like a college or university. Since the timeline can begin almost a year before new students would attend the school, NAIS recommends parents seek out deadlines early—for both admissions and financial aid—by calling or visiting the websites of potential schools. Then, keep careful track of the dates, and allow plenty of time to meet them.

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Once you’ve defined your family’s ideal school and narrowed down a list of the best contenders, it’s time to see the schools in action. Open houses, held in the fall and winter, give parents an opportunity to experience an institution’s mission and environment for themselves. Individual school tours, planned in advance with the admissions department, offer parents and families a more personalized look at the school. 

“When you come to an open house or a visiting day, really dive into it,” suggests Pat Whitehead, executive director at The Waldorf School. Find out how the school will meet the needs of your child by asking questions—beyond what might be found on the brochure. “Your job is to dig deep, to ask as many questions as you want. Prepare your list of questions before you go into the school.”

While children should always be involved in the decision-making process, the degree obviously varies depending on age. “One of the hardest things for parents, particularly parents of kids going into middle school, is to be clear about who is making the decision,” says Whitehead. “You have to listen to your child’s experience and their feelings, but you should remember that you have their long-term needs in mind in a way that they don’t. The here and now is really important, and your child needs to feel heard. But so, too, is the long-term educational strategy, and the parents understand that.”

The Right Questions

What admissions officers want you to ask.

➼ What is the school’s mission or educational philosophy?

➼ Is the school accredited, and if so, by what accrediting agency?

➼ How many students does the school have?

➼ How diverse is the student body?

➼ What is the student-teacher ratio?

➼ Do the teachers have degrees in the subjects they teach?

➼ Is the atmosphere competitive or more nurturing?

➼ What kinds of students do best at the school?

➼ What types of learning experiences are available—in class, on the playing field, in extracurricular activities, in leadership programs and community service?

➼ How does the school get parents involved? What do parents typically do?

➼ How much is the tuition? Are there other charges, such as for books, lab fees, transportation, and so on?

➼ What financing options or financial aid does the school offer? What is the financial aid application process? When are the deadlines?

➼ What is the process for applying?

An integral way to involve children is through shadow days, where they are paired with a student ambassador and attend classes with them for all or part of a school day. Visit days offered Sereena and Caroline Knight the opportunity to get an inside look at schools and share their experiences with their parents. “We encouraged them to not just look at the person they’re shadowing with, but to look at the girls beyond that person. In some instances, we were surprised at the feedback,” says Knight. “But at Bryn Mawr, they definitely felt a connection that they told us about.”

In addition to the organized school tour and visit days, Angela Lima recommends parents get to know the school away from the glitz of admissions events. “Don’t just go through the steps the school wants, when they put their best foot forward,” she says. “Visit on random, non-open house days. Attend other events and interact with current students.” At Waldorf, she was won over by the sense of community evident in the everyday details—children there exuded warmth, holding doors open for one another and saying good morning.

“Don’t be frightened by the process,” advises Whitehead of WSB. Think of choosing the right school as establishing a partnership between parents and educators that begins from the first admissions inquiry and continues through graduation. “You’re going into a partnership that is going to last for quite some time,” she says. “The parents and school will hold that child between them. It’s not to be taken lightly.”

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Save The Dates

Below is a list of open houses at schools in the Greater Baltimore region.

Archbishop Curley High School Open house: 10/28 and 10/29, 10 a.m.-noon 3701 Sinclair Lane 410-485-5000 archbishopcurley.org Grades: 9-12, all male Enrollment: 560 Affiliation: Catholic/Franciscan

Archbishop Spalding High School 10/29, 12-2:00 p.m. 8080 New Cut Road, Severn 410-969-9105 archbishopspalding.org Grades: 9-12, coed Enrollment: 1,253 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

Baltimore Lab School Third Thursday breakfast tour each month 9:00-10:15 a.m. Open house: 12/14 9:00-11:00 a.m. 2220 St. Paul St. 410-261-5500 baltimorelabschool.org Grades: 1-12, coed Enrollment: 155 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Beth El Congregation schools, Pikesville Call for tour information 8101 Park Heights Ave. 410-602-2245 bethelbalto.com Grades: 6 weeks-5 years of age, coed Enrollment: n/a  Affiliation: Jewish

Beth El @ Federal Hill Call for tour information 1530 Battery Ave. 410-602-2245 bethelbalto.com Grades: 2-5 years of age, coed Enrollment: 32 Affiliation: Jewish

Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School 12/4, 7:00 p.m., high school; 11/15, 7:00 p.m., middle school; 11/2 and 12/6, 8:45 a.m. lower school 3300 Old Court Road, Pikesville 410-486-1905 bethtfiloh.com Grades: 14 months-grade 12, coed Enrollment: 950 Affiliation: Jewish

The Boys’ Latin School of Maryland 10/22, 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 822 W. Lake Ave. 410-377-5192 boyslatinmd.com Grades: K-12, all-male Enrollment: 630 Affiliation: Non-sectarian  The Bryn Mawr School 11/5, 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 109 W. Melrose Ave. 410-323-8800 brynmawrschool.org Grades: k-12, all-female except coed preschool Enrollment: 678 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Calvert Hall College High School 11/12, 12:00-4:00 p.m. 8102 La Salle Road 410-825-4266 calverthall.com Grades: 9-12, all-male Enrollment: 1,175 Affiliation: Roman Catholic and Lasallian

Calvert School  10/26, 11/14, 9:00-11:00 a.m. 105 Tuscany Road 410-243-6054 calvertschoolmd.org Grades: K-8, coed Enrollment: 592 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Cambridge School 10/17, 6:30-8 p.m.; 10/18, 9-11 a.m.; 3/7, 9-11 a.m. 110 Sudbrook Lane, Pikesville 410-486-3686 cambridgeschool.org Grades: k-8, coed Enrollment: 110 Affiliation: Christian

The Catholic High School of Baltimore 10/21, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 2800 Edison Hwy. 410-732-6200 thecatholichighschool.org Grades: 9-12, all-female Enrollment: 320 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

Columbia Academy Call for times 10350 Old Columbia Road, Columbia  410-312-7413  columbiaacademy.com Grades: Junior k-8, coed Enrollment: 200 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Concordia Preparatory School 10/7, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. 1145 Concordia Dr., Towson 410-825-2323 Grades: 6-12, Coed Enrollment: 310 Affiliation: Christian (Lutheran)

Eastern Technical High School 10/24, 6-8 p.m. 1100 Mace Ave., Essex 410-887-0190 easterntechhs.bcps.org Grades: 9-12, coed Enrollment: approx. 1,200 Affiliation: nonsectarian, public

Friends School of Baltimore 10/3, 9-11 a.m.; 10/25, 9-11 a.m. 5114 N. Charles St. 410-649-3200 friendsbalt.org Grades: pre-K-12, coed Enrollment: 803 Affiliation: Quaker

Fork Union Military Academy  10/9, 9:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 4744 James Madison Hwy. Fork Union, Virginia 1-800-GO-2-FUMA (1-800-462-3862) forkunion.com Grades: 7-12, and post-grad program, boarding, all-male Enrollment: approx. 400 Affiliation: Christian

Garrison Forest School Lower school parent visit days 10/13, 8 a.m.-10:00 a.m.; middle school 10/11, 7:45-9:30 a.m.; upper school 10/18, 9-10:30 a.m.; 11/12, 2-4 p.m., all school. 300 Garrison Forest Rd., Owings Mills 410-363-1500 gfs.org Grades: pre-K-12, all-female except coed pre-k Enrollment: 600 Affiliation: nonsectarian

Gerstell Academy 10/22, 2 p.m.; 11/12, 2 p.m.; 12/1, 11 a.m. 2500 Old Westminster Pike, Finksburg 410-861-3000 gerstell.org Grades: pre-k-12, coed Enrollment: 400 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Gilman School 10/28, 12:30-2:00 p.m. 5407 Roland Ave.  410-323-3800 gilman.edu Grades: K-12, all-male Enrollment: 1,010 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Glenelg Country School 10/20, 11/7, 12/6, 9 a.m-10:30 a.m. 12793 Folly Quarter Road, Ellicott City 410-531-8600 glenelg.org Grades: age 2-grade 12, coed Enrollment: 756 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Greenspring Montessori School 10/3, 9:00-10:30 a.m.; 11/18, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.; 12/5, 9:00 a.m.-10:30 a.m. 10807 Tony Dr., Lutherville-Timonium 410-321-8555 Grades: 18 months-grade 9, coed Enrollment: 252 Affiliation: non-sectarian

Harford Day School Lower school: 10/19, 9:00 a.m. Middle school: 11/10, 9:00 a.m. 715 Moores Mill Road, Bel Air 410-838-4848 Harfordday.org Grades: pre-k (age 3)-grade 8, coed Enrollment: 275 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

The Highlands School Call to schedule tour. 2409 Creswell Road, Bel Air 410-836-1415 highlandsschool.net Grades: K-12 (new upper school), coed, for learning differences Enrollment: up to 75/rolling admissions. Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Immaculate Conception School Middle School Open House 10/11, 6:30-8:30 p.m. General Fall Open House 11/9, 9:30-11:30 a.m. 112 Ware Ave., Towson 410-427-4801 theimmaculate.org Grades: pre-K (age 3) thru grade 8, coed Enrollment: 575 Affiliation: Catholic

Institute of Notre Dame 11/4, 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. 901 Aisquith St. 410-522-7800 indofmd.org Grades: 9-12, all-female Enrollment: 354 Affilation: Roman Catholic

Jemicy School Call to schedule tour. 11202 Garrison Forest Road, Owings Mills (upper school) 11 Celadon Road, Owings Mills (lower and middle schools) 410-653-2700 jemicyschool.org Grades: 1-12, coed Enrollment: 380 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Krieger Schechter Day School  11/29, 7:00 p.m. 8100 Stevenson Road 410-486-8640 ksds.edu Grades: k-8, coed Enrollment: 293 Affiliation: Jewish

Loyola Blakefield 10/22, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. 500 Chestnut Ave., Towson 410-823-0601 loyolablakefield.org Grades: 6-12, all-male Enrollment: 970 Affiliation: Jesuit Catholic

Maryvale Preparatory School 10/21, 1-4 p.m. 11300 Falls Road, Lutherville 410-252-3366 maryvale.com Grades: 6-12, all-female Enrollment: 417 Affiliation: Catholic

McDonogh School 10/11, 10/26, 11/7, 9 a.m. (lower) 10/29, 12:30-2:30 p.m. (middle) 10/29, 3-5 p.m. (upper) 8600 McDonogh Road, Owings Mills 410-363-0600 mcdonogh.org Grades: pre-K-12, coed Enrollment: 1,384  Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Mercersburg Academy  10/9, 12/11, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 300 E. Seminary St. Mercersburg, Pennsylvania 717-328-6173 info.mercersburg.edu/openhouse Grades: 9-12, plus post-grad year, boarding and day, coed Enrollment: 441 Affiliation: nonsectarian

Mercy High School 10/28, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 1300 E. Northern Pkwy. 410-433-8880 mercyhighschool.com Grades: 9-12, all-female Enrollment: 327 Affiliation: Catholic

Mother Seton Academy 1/21, 12:00 p.m. 2215 Greenmount Ave. 410-563-2833 mothersetonacademy.org Grades: 6-8, coed Enrollment: 75 Affiliation: Catholic

Mount de Sales Academy 11/5, 12:00-3:00 pm 700 Academy Road, Catonsville 410-744-8498 mountdesalesacademy.org Grades: 9-12, all-female Enrollment: 491 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

Mount Saint Joseph High School 10/29, 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. 4403 Frederick Ave. 410-644-3300 msjnet.edu Grades: 9-12, all-male Enrollment: 924 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

Notre Dame Preparatory School 10/14, 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. 815 Hampton Lane, Towson 410-825-6202 notredameprep.com Grades: 6-12, all-female Enrollment: 835 Affiliation: Catholic

The Odyssey School 1/25, 6:45-9:00 p.m. 3257 Bridle Ridge Lane, Stevenson 410-580-5551  theodysseyschool.org  Grades: K-8, coed Enrollment: 162  Affiliation: Non-sectarian Oldfields School 10/22, 1:00-3:00 p.m. 1500 Glencoe Road, Sparks Glencoe 410-472-4800 oldfieldsschool.org Grades: 8-12, All-female Enrollment: 180 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

Our Lady of Perpetual Help School 10/17, 11/8, 10:00 a.m., 12/6, 7:00 p.m., 1/28, 10:00 a.m. 4801 Ilchester Road, Ellicott City OLPHschool.org  410-744-4251 Grades: Pre-K to grade 8, Co-ed Enrollment: 220 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

Our Lady of Grace School Call for times 18310 Middletown Road, Parkton 410-329-6956 olgs.org Grades: Preschool, coed Enrollment: 169 Affiliation: Catholic

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Pre K – 8: 1/29. 1:00-3:00 p.m. 9-12: 10/19, 6:30-8:30 p.m. 1704 Old Eastern Ave. 410-686-4972 olmcmd.org Grades: preschool-12, coed Enrollment: 550 Affiliation: Catholic

Our Lady of Victory Catholic School 11/10, 8:45-11 a.m. 4416 Wilkens Ave. 410-242-3688 olvmd.org Grades: Pre-K-8, Coed Enrollment: 200 Affiliation: Catholic

The Park School of Baltimore Lower School: 10/7, 10:00-11:30 a.m. Middle/Upper School: 10/29 1:00-3:00 p.m. 2425 Old Court Road 410-339-7070 parkschool.net Grades: pre-K-12, coed Enrollment: 841 Affiliation: non-sectarian

Peabody Preparatory Preparatory Institute of The Johns Hopkins University Call for times 21 E. Mount Vernon Place 667-208-6640 peabody.jhu.edu Grades: Music and dance instruction for all ages and abilities, co-ed Enrollment: Approx. 2,000 per week at four locations. Affiliation: nonsectarian

Redeemer Classical Christian School 11/16, 6:30 p.m. 6415 Mount Vista Road, Kingsville 410-592-9625 rccs.org Grades: pre-k-12, coed Enrollment: 250 Affiliation: Christian

Roland Park Country School 10/22. 1:00 p.m. 5204 Roland Ave.  410-323-5500 rpcs.org Grades: pre-school-12, all-female except coed preschool  Enrollment: 610  Affiliation: nonsectarian 

St. James Academy 11/11, 9:00-11:30 a.m. 3100 Monkton Road, Monkton 410-771-4816 stjamesacademy.org Grades: k-8, coed Enrollment: 300 Affiliation: Episcopalian  

Saint James School 10/21, 8:00 a.m. & 12:15 p.m., 1/15, 7:45 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 17641 College Road, Hagerstown 301-733-9330 stjames.edu Grades: 8-12, coed Enrollment: 238 Affiliation: Episcopalian  

St. John’s Parish Day School 10/9, 10/25, 11/10, 1/17, 1/30, 5/3, 10:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m. 9130 Frederick Road, Ellicott City 410-465-7644  stjohnspds.org Grades: age 3-grade 5, coed Enrollment: 350 Affiliation: Episcopalian

Sandy Spring Friends School 10/15, 1:00-3:30 p.m. 16923 Norwood Road, Sandy Spring 301-774-7455 ssfs.org Grades: preschool-12, coed Enrollment: 603 Affiliation: Quaker

The School of the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen 10/10, 11/7, 4/10, 8:30-11:30 am 111 Amberly Way 410-464-4100 schoolofthecathedral.org Grades: K-8, coed Enrollment: 377 Affiliation: Catholic 

St. Paul’s School Lower school: 10/27, 9:00 a.m. Middle school: 10/3, 10/24, 11/14, 12/5, 8:45-10:30 a.m.  Upper school: 10/5, 11/9, 12/7, 8:45-10:30 a.m  11152 Falls Road, Brooklandville 410-825-4400 stpaulsschool.org Grades K-4, lower school is coed Grades: 5-12, middle/upper school is all-male Enrollment: 766 Affiliation: Episcopalian 

St. Paul’s School for Girls Middle school: 10/24, 8:30-10:00 a.m., 11/14, 6:30-7:30 p.m., 12/7, 8:30-10:00 a.m., 1/4, 8:00-10:00 a.m. Upper school: 10/17, 8:30-10:00 a.m., 11/9, 8:30-10:00 a.m., 11/14, 6:30-7:30 p.m., 1/5, 8:30-10:00 a.m. 11232 Falls Road, Brooklandville 410-823-6323 spsfg.org Grades: 5-12, all-female Enrollment: 437 Affiliation: Episcopalian

St. Mark School 10/9, 11/10, 2/1, 3/21, 4/24, 9-11 a.m.  26 Melvin Ave., Catonsville 410-744-6560 stmark-school.org Grades: pre-k-8, coed Enrollment: 372 Affiliation: Catholic St. Timothy’s School 10/21, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 8400 Greenspring Ave., Stevenson 410-486-7401 stt.org Grades: boarding and day, 9-12, all-female Enrollment: 200 Affiliation: Episcopalian

St. Ursula School 11/10, 8:30-11 a.m., 1/28, 1-3 p.m. 8900 Harford Road 410-665-3533 stursula.org Grades: pre-K-8, coed Enrollment: 639 Affiliation: Roman Catholic

St. Pius X School 11/9, 8:30-10:00 a.m. & 6:00-7:30 p.m. 6432 York Road 410-427-7400 stpius10school.org Grades: pre-K-8, coed Enrollment: 155 Affiliation: Catholic

Severn School (now merged with Chesapeake Academy) Lower school: 10/6, 11:00 a.m. Middle school: 10/26, 7:00-9:00 p.m. Upper school: 11/2, 7:00-10:00 p.m. 1185 Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd., Arnold (lower school) and 201 Water St., Severna Park (middle/upper school) 410-647-7700 severnschool.com Grades: pre-K-12, coed Enrollment: 810 Affiliation: non-sectarian

Shady Side Academy Senior School 10/21, 11:00 a.m.; 12/5, 6:30 p.m. 423 Fox Chapel Road, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania  412-968-3000 shadysideacademy.org Grades: 9-12, coed, day and boarding Enrollment: 480 Affiliation: non-sectarian

Springdale Preparatory School Call for Times 500 Main St., New Windsor 855-405-8600 springdaleps.org  Grades: new school, 5-12, day and boarding, coed Enrollment: n/a Affiliation: non-sectarian

Trinity School 10/13, 9:00 a.m.; 11/9, 9:30 a.m.; 11/12, 11:00 a.m.; 12/7, 9:00 a.m.; 1/12, 9:00 a.m.; 1/15, 9:00 a.m.; 2/11, 11:00 a.m. 4985 Ilchester Road, Ellicott City 410-744-1524 trinityschoolmd.org Grades: pre-k3-grade 8, coed Enrollment: 380 Affiliation: Catholic 

Waldorf School of Baltimore 10/10, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; 11/8, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; 11/14, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; 12/14, 8:30-9:30 a.m.; 1/10, 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.; 2/6, 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.; 2/23, 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. 4801 Tamarind Road 410-367-6808 waldorfschoolofbaltimore.org Grades: nursery-8, coed Enrollment: 133 Affiliation: Non-sectarian

West Nottingham Academy 10/9, 11/10, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.; 1/21, 1:00-3:00 p.m. 1079 Firetower Road, Colora 410-658-5556 wna.org Grades: boarding/day, 9-12, coed Enrollment: 130 Affiliation: non-sectarian

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