Browse F.A.Q. Topics
How do SGS families get involved?
SGS would not be the school it is without our families, and we encourage, welcome, and support as much involvement as families would like to have with SGS. Family members might do things like teach Wednesday Workshops, drive to and from events, or serve as event volunteers.
All families are required to be members of their daughter’s Learning Team and are automatically members of the Community Association of Parents (CAP).
What does it mean if a student is waitlisted?
Applicants are waitlisted when the Admission Committee deemed the student admissible, but was unable to extend a contract due to space limitations. When and if spots become available, the Admission Committee confers to decide which waitlisted student would be the best fit for the class. Several waitlisted applicants are generally granted admittance each year, though the exact number varies.
Is preference given to siblings or other connected candidates?
We do not give preference to any applicants. Siblings, children, or other immediate relatives and friends of current or former SGS students, as well as those of current, former, or prospective SGS employees, Board of Trustees and Advisory Board members, guest instructors or lecturers, community partners, volunteers, donors, and other SGS community members must apply for admission and financial aid through the same application process as all prospective families.
How do you make admission decisions?
Once all the applicants have been interviewed, each member of the Admission Committee makes his or her recommendations to admit, waitlist, or deny each applicant. Final decisions are then made by consensus. In all cases, the school retains the right to determine, at its sole discretion, whether or not to select a student for admission. Ultimate approval on admission decisions rests with the Head of School.
Can you support a student with learning differences?
Because we do not have a learning specialist on staff, we are unable to support moderate to severe learning differences at this time. We make admission decisions on a case-by-case basis and encourage you to contact the admission office if you have specific questions about your child.
What makes a successful applicant to SGS?
There is no “cookie cutter” SGS student. Each year, we seek to build classes of students that represent a richness of interests, personalities, perspectives, and educational, and cultural experiences.
We consider the best “matches” for SGS to be those students (and families) who can best contribute to and benefit from the school’s unique mission, curriculum, setting, and approach to learning. Common qualities in successful SGS candidates include maturity, open-mindedness, and leadership potential.
We also ask that applicants to SGS perform at or above grade level, as determined by the prospective student’s current school.
When should my family start the application process?
For which grade should my daughter apply?
Our major points of entry into the school are fifth and sixth grades. Spots beyond sixth grade are available when vacancies by current students occur. Our fifth grade averages 16 students per year, and provides a smaller setting than our sixth, seventh, or eighth grades. Families are encouraged to apply to SGS when they feel it is right for them.
How many applications do you receive each year and how many applicants do you accept?
We cannot accurately forecast the number of applications we will receive each year. Similarly, we do not have a formula for the number or percentage of applicants we will accept, deny, or waitlist. Admission figures each year depend on the total number of applications received and the number of places available.
Do students switch between classrooms?
Yes, students switch classrooms to go to Adventure and Wellness (A+W), Art, Guitar, and Spanish, as well as some of their other academic classes.
What is it like being at all-girls school? Do you miss having boys around?
Being at an all-girls school is a lot like being at a co-ed school…it’s still school! But, there are definitely some differences, and it takes some students time to adjust to the single-sex environment. SGS students tell us they often feel more comfortable being themselves, speaking out in class, and dressing how they want in the all-girls environment. SGS students still hang out with boys outside of school, and we think that’s important.
Do you have special projects or reports?
Students complete many different types of projects and reports throughout each term. At the end of every term, students participate in Culminating Events where they showcase what they have learned to their families and friends.
Do you have an art class?
Yes! Art is integrated into the curriculum, so the art projects students are creating directly relate to the topics they are learning about in other classes. Students have art twice a week for the entire school year.
Is there a music program?
Yes. We have a music program. Fifth grade students take beginning ukulele and sixth grade students take beginning guitar as part of the curriculum. Additionally, we offer Rock Band during Wednesday Workshops and after school.
In seventh and eighth grades, students have the option to further develop individual expression and creativity as well as their ability to work as a team, performing as an ensemble, through our Rock Band Program. Our music studio is fully equipped from a generous donation of instruments from Pearl Jam.
Do students study all subjects, or is there more emphasis on math and science? What subjects do you focus on most? How do you divide class time among the subjects?
Students study a variety of subjects at SGS, including Math, Science, and Humanities (a combination of Language Arts and Social Studies). We don’t focus on any one subject more than the other–we value each subject individually and think that when all the subjects are integrated together, learning is maximized. Students spend roughly equal amounts of time in their Math, Science, and Humanities classes.
Do students have to take state exams like the WASL?
We do not take any state exams at SGS. We prefer to let our teachers have the maximum amount of class time to teach our unique integrated curriculum.
What is the homework load like?
At SGS, we focus on the quality of homework rather than the quantity. Teachers assign homework when they feel it will complement what students are learning in class. Many students who stay for an hour after school for Scholar’s Club are able to complete most or all of their homework during that time.