Dawson is an exceptional place where students are recognized as individuals and valued for their distinct personalities and abilities. Students not only prepare for college here – they prepare for life. They gain invaluable skills and insights through authentic learning. They grow creatively, socially, in character, and in intellect. Dawson stokes their curiosity and shows them how to satisfy it. They discover ways to uncover answers, to cherish and support the world around them, and to find new ways to view it. They learn to live with integrity, passion, and genuine joy; to be themselves and to do their best.
Grades K-4, our Lower School, lays the foundation. Strong academics are brought to life with varied, engaging hands-on experiences. Whether they’re digging in our learning garden or spending the night on the prairie in a teepee, students become fully involved in their own education. It’s one thing to study Spanish in first grade; it’s another to use conversational Spanish to run your own mercado (market).
Our Middle School, grades 5-8, embraces the big changes and challenges that this stage of life brings. Yes, the academics are rigorous: We’re preparing students for upper school. But we also recognize the unique energy that characterizes this age group, and take advantage of it, helping students build lifelong traits of responsibility, self-awareness, and compassion in the process.
When our students reach Upper School, grades 9-12, they become heavily involved in clubs, community service, sports, and challenging academics. By the conclusion of their senior year, they are self-aware, self-directed, capable young adults, well equipped for higher education and beyond. Just before graduation, our annual Senior Honoring Ceremony features faculty, staff, and coaches reflecting on the talents, accomplishments, and contributions of every single student, demonstrating how powerful and positive the connections are between students and faculty at Dawson.