Center for Academic Potential
Excellence by Design
Historically, Hathaway Brown School has been known for its appreciation of different learning styles and its commitment to the development of each girl’s academic potential and passion. The School has had learning specialists working with its students and faculty for more than 20 years; however, the Center for Academic Potential began in 1999 when a Director was hired to direct this new Center. Hathaway Brown had grown to the point that Mr. Christ felt it was important that services between the three divisions be coordinated. The Director and the three Learning Specialists, one in Prime, one in Middle School, and one in the Upper School, work as a cross-divisional team to support the students, parents, staff and faculty at Hathaway Brown School.
The Prime Learning Specialist provides reading and writing support in grades K through 4. In kindergarten, the Prime Learning Specialist and the Director of the Center for Academic Potential work within the kindergarten classrooms to provide emerging individualized literacy support 3 or 4 days a week that has contributed to the amazing success of this exciting program. In addition, she provides professional development for teachers in such areas as the teaching of handwriting, spelling and written expression.
The Middle School Learning Specialist supports the girls who qualify for accommodations through Hathaway Brown School Educational Plans. She also helps faculty, students and parents interpret CTP results and is a very knowledgeable resource for the HB community regarding various aspects of learning.
The Upper School Learning Specialist is a licensed psychologist and is well known in the Cleveland community for his expertise in evaluation, educational accommodations, and conflict resolution. He has become an indispensable resource in our Upper School regarding standardized testing accommodations including College Board and ACT, study and organizational skill development, and interventions to reduce anxiety and to support students with learning and attentional disorders.
In the late 1990s, Head of School Bill Christ coined the term Excellence by Design to articulate the active, systematic management of each Hathaway Brown student so that she fully meets her academic potential. Excellence by Design is the commitment by faculty and administration to helping each Hathaway Brown student heighten performance, discover her passion, and cultivate within herself a sense of high purpose. This process is far more than shaping a compelling transcript; its real purpose is to shape a great person. At each division, there is a conscious effort to gain a keener understanding of the unique contours of each student’s learning landscape so that each student’s teachers can build on her strengths, support and strengthen areas of relative weakness, and foster heightened achievement in various domains. As students journey through Hathaway Brown School, teacher insight, standardized testing, parental observations, and her own self assessment, accumulate into a rich reservoir of knowledge. Consulting with faculty and parents about how to interpret and use this knowledge has been the focus of the Center for Academic Potential whose team members are available to investigate, analyze, confer and strategize. Whether it is in Prime, Middle School or Upper School, the Center for Academic Potential helps girls to succeed in their basic skills and core subjects, as well as, to facilitate having the girls discover and pursue their passions, wherever they may lead them.
Contact the Director of the Center for Academic Potential.