Founded in 1884 to provide girls with an excellent liberal arts education previously available only to boys, Brearley challenges girls of adventurous intellect and diverse backgrounds to think critically and creatively, and prepares them for principled engagement in the world. The School takes seriously its role as a leader in K-XII education and embraces that position in all its deliberations and programming.
We recognize that the changing gender landscape poses questions faced by all girls’ schools. Brearley reaffirms its mission as a leader in girls’ education, and going forward will consider all applicants who identify as girls. In the instance that a current Brearley student no longer identifies as a girl, the School is committed to supporting the child and the family as appropriate to navigate the challenges inherent in being a transgender student in a girls’ school. We expect all students who choose Brearley and continue their education at the School will be supportive of the School’s history, mission and advocacy for girls’ education and women’s advancement. While the institutional language of the School is necessarily gendered as we refer to our students as “girls” or “young women,” we will make every effort to honor the student’s choice of name and pronoun in our personal communications to, with and about the individual student. When a student shares a questioning of gender or a shift in gender identity, the School will gather the appropriate support team to work in concert with the student and family. Recognizing that the developmental and educational needs of each individual may change over time, the School will continue to partner with the child and family throughout the student’s education at Brearley, and especially as the student nears a change in division, to determine if a girls’ school environment will continue to provide the best educational experience.
This statement was developed after several years of conversations and deliberation by the Trustees, administration, Student Life Committee and faculty and staff, in consultation with experts and organizations in the field. We will continue to stay current on the national conversation on gender diversity and best school practices and continue to seek expert guidance. Brearley will monitor the implementation of this statement to ensure it best serves the School and individual students and families. (Adopted 6/18/2018)