We believe that school doesn’t have to be boring; that if we challenge, excite, nurture, and engage the whole child, we can inspire a love of learning that will last a lifetime.
A K-8 school for gifted and for academically talented students.
Here, what’s best for children drives the curriculum—not tests. It’s where passionate educators are empowered to teach, and intimate classrooms are places of joy, exploration, and respect for one another. It’s where bright students learn to tap into their curiosity and search for answers, rather than memorize them.
Emerson is a special environment where smart is cool, and classrooms are comprised of other gifted, unique peers who help and encourage each other to become their best. It’s where bright students thrive, and we encourage you to learn more about how our school might benefit your child.
Lower School: Kindergarten – 5th grade
Middle School: 6th grade – 8th grade
Faculty and staff: 68.5
Average teaching experience: 20 years
Average years at Emerson: 12 years
Faculty with advanced degrees: 66%
Diversity: 39% of students self-identify as a person of color
Learning support and academic enrichment staff: 5, including a full time counselor
Student to faculty ratio: 8 to 1
Financial aid recipients: 20% of student body
Average class size: 15
Campus: 20 acres with sports fields, 16,000 ft² Arts and Innovation Center, nature center, playgrounds, planetarium, and permaculture garden
Accreditation: Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS)
Library Media Center: More than 11,000 volumes and an online catalog
Physical education: 3 times each week for all grades, K-8
World languages: 4
Middle school electives and activities: 20+ each trimester
Varsity sports: 6
Performance on national ERB Testing: 94th percentile, averaged
Emerson placed higher than the average independent school and the average top-performing public schools in every subject area
Quantitative reasoning: 96th
Reading comprehension: 85th
Writing mechanics: 91st
Verbal reasoning: 94th
All data updated based on 2017-2018 school year.
The mission of Emerson School is to provide a whole child, multiple method approach to instruction for gifted and for academically talented students. Emerson School encourages creativity, problem solving, and the development of basic skills, while providing a warm, supportive environment that promotes responsibility for oneself and others.
The terms “gifted” and/or “academically talented” describe children who possess one or more unusually heightened innate or demonstrated abilities: excellent academic aptitude and/or achievement; sophisticated abstract, creative, or divergent thinking; advanced use of language; an acute sense of perception, strong powers of observation, and/or a keen sense of humor; distinct emotional sensitivity and/or intensity; extraordinary memory; persistence and resilience; motivation and intellectual curiosity; and outstanding talent in the performing and visual arts. The distinctive qualities which these students exhibit in some areas may exist in combination with average aptitude or relative weakness in others. Perhaps not surprisingly, since these students’ gifts place them so far ahead of the “norm” in significant ways, uneven (asynchronous) patterns of development tend to characterize this population, and gifted and/or academically talented children tend not to conform to any one stereotype or checklist of traits.
Emerson School strives to make all students, faculty, administrators, and parents feel safe, respected and valued in her/his identity as full members of the school community.
39% of Emerson Students self-identify as a person of color.
We are dedicated to an ever-increasingly diverse learning environment that will best prepare our students to intelligently engage in a complex, globally interconnected society. At Emerson, diversity is thought of in terms of ethnicity, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, learning styles, socio-economic status, and family structure.
Children learn best in a caring environment in which each child’s unique gifts and talents are celebrated. People learn with different styles and at different rates. Teachers work to accommodate individual needs, and to foster positive, realistic self-concepts. They work to promote self-reliance and self-discipline in students. In our school, cognitive and creative risk-taking become safe and valued. Our atmosphere encourages mutual respect. Children learn by doing, by being listened to, by participating, and by working together. In working with gifted and academically talented students, Emerson seeks to teach basic skills, encourage higher-level thinking, and to nurture creativity. We address the needs of the whole child, and recognize the need for children to develop intellectually, artistically, physically, socially, and emotionally. The school endeavors to instill important values, including respect, responsibility, compassion, and honesty. In doing so, we promote the importance of contributing to the Emerson School community and the larger communities in which we live.
Emerson’s academics and caliber of faculty are by far its strongest attributes, and I frequently tell people that I learned more from my Emerson teachers than I did my High School teachers and many of my college professors.
Helena Bentley, Class of 2005
Middle school students attend world language classes five days per week.