Mission & History
Hathaway Brown is a dynamic and compassionate community dedicated to excellence in the education of girls. For us, educational excellence includes, but reaches well beyond, superb preparation for college. The true mission of the school, as reflected in our motto, “Non Scholae Sed Vitae Discimus,” is preparation for life. We strive to foster in the minds of our students an abiding passion for learning and in their hearts a constant devotion to strong character and public service.
At this moment in history, there is a great need for women of vision and courage who are empowered for leadership in a multicultural and globalized society. We seek to answer that need by inspiring our students to achieve their utmost potential and to rise boldly to the challenges of our times.
While transforming the lives of girls in our care is our primary calling, Hathaway Brown embraces broader aspirations as well: to help shape a future of unbounded possibility for women; to stand among the country’s leading schools in educational innovation; and to be such a force for the common good beyond our campus that we are respected as a civic treasure.
Five determined girls founded Hathaway Brown when they marched up the steps of the all-boys Brooks Military Academy to petition the headmaster to enroll them as well.
What began as “afternoon classes for young ladies” grew into one of the nation’s premier independent schools dedicated to educating and empowering women. While the Brooks Military Academy closed its doors in 1891, HB still proudly stands, welcoming girls of strong character and academic promise from all over Northeast Ohio.
The school was named for beloved headmistress Anne Hathaway Brown, who adopted the motto: Non Scholae Sed Vitae Discimus—We Learn Not for School, But for Life.
She also chose the school colors of brown and gold to signify that HB is an institution rooted in the earth, but reaching for the sun.
HB moved to a picturesque 16-acre plot of land in Shaker Heights, the city it continues to call home.