We’re not about top-down experiences here. Rather, we start at the center: our students—their interests, creativity, academic needs, and well-being.
Bay is designed around and for its students, and they never fail to impress us with their capacity to learn, lead, express themselves, and build deep connections with their peers and mentors.
Bay aims to give students the tools to know themselves and their values, to make decisions based on what’s important to them, and to create strong personal relationships.
In practice, we focus on developing life skills in ways that align with our precepts and mission, centering difference and diversity, kindness, and mindfulness, as we continually build and strengthen our community.
Advisories and Co-Curricular Classes
All students attend advisory once a week. These grade-level cohorts of 7 to 8 students remain together with their advisor during their years at Bay. In the 9th and 10th grades, advisory time is focused on getting to know each other, team-building, and developing a supportive group dynamic. In 11th and 12th grades, these spaces for forming connections become even more important as students come into their own as young adults, learning to handle stress and understanding their identities.
Advisors play an important role at Bay. Master listeners, they want to know who their advisees are as people and get to know them through time spent as a group discussing interests and playing games; they are available to talk one-on-one about any challenges that arise and serve as a communication link between the school, the student, and families. They also prepare all 9th graders and new transfers for a Bay tradition: first-quarter student-led conferences with all their teachers, during which they receive their grades and have time to discuss their learning and progress. Learn more about advisory at Bay.
Students in 9th and 10th grades take co-curricular, non-academic classes that aim to set them up for success at Bay and beyond. 9th Grade Seminar is a yearlong class that explores individual identity in a community context, how to approach the new challenges and situations of high school effectively, and the skills of being present and engaged with their peers, teachers, and families.
Choices is a one-semester course for all 10th graders, taught by Bay School counselors, that provides a framework of current information and research to help students consider issues related to sexuality, substance use, social relationships, and decision-making.
Student Engagement and Leadership
A notable feature of student life at Bay is how effectively it builds cross-grade relationships and a strong overall community in which each student can find their place and their voice. Opportunities to participate and to start your own initiative abound, whether the purpose is serious or to simply bring joy and fun.