Humble Excellence: The Hallmark of Woodlawn

The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is designed to assess high school students’ academic readiness for college. Since its inception in 1926, the SAT has gone through many adaptations in presentation and theories of use. For a long time it was heavily relied-upon by major academic institutions in the admission process and, though many college and universities now are equally relying on other academic factors, SAT scores remain influential and therefore deserving of our attention.

Recently, the Council of American Private Education (CAPE), a group comprised of independent and religious schools in the United States, published some interesting data with regard to SAT scores. The first three columns of this graph show how independent, religious, and public schools compare with regard to mean SAT scores. We have added the fourth column — Woodlawn students’ SAT performance — to the graph, and we believe the results are impressive.

The SAT performance of Woodlawn students reflects a very clear excellence in their education, and we are humbled by the way students pursue that excellence: as an important result of their commitment to lifelong learning.

That passion for learning continues when Woodlawn students get to college, where the typical Woodlawn graduate avoids getting burned out by “blear-eyed wisdom out of midnight oil” as William Butler Yeats says in his poem “Among School Children.” Indeed, taking a look at the college majors chosen by our alumni (see the chart below), we believe that Woodlawn’s liberal arts-style approach inspires a thirst for continuous learning. Now in my 15th month at Woodlawn School, I am still in awe of the academic and co-curricular programs deliberately constructed and applied by the founders, faculty, and a carefully chosen staff, all of whom demand a quiet excellence while allowing a lot of good fun and sport around the edges of our school days.

Woodlawn alumni who have graduated from college are very desirable employees, with interesting and important career paths — and they are proof that our program works. Without a doubt, the Woodlawn School community has significant reasons to celebrate our humble excellence, wholesome fun, hard work ethic, and great accomplishments.

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