Academics

The Changemaker School

Academics

The Ellis School, Pittsburgh’s #1 school for girls of all ages, is unmatched for producing bold, authentic, and intellectually vibrant young women who are ready to make a positive change in the world.

Our academic program encourages girls to take risks, work collaboratively, ask questions, and pursue their dreams. Armed with a delight for learning and boundless confidence, Ellis grads can shake the world.

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What that means

From Day 1, our curriculum builds to help your daughter:

Find Your Voice

Find Her Voice

She’ll have academic space to discover who she is as a person. She’ll learn to express ideas convincingly (and maybe even challenge the status quo) in person and in writing.

Discover Your Passions

Discover What She's Passionate About

That begins at Ellis—and lasts for life. Along the way, she’ll try many new things to uncover where her true talents and personal interests lie.

Be College-Ready

Graduate Ready to Shake the World

Our grads leave their mark at Yale, Penn State, Mt. Holyoke, Purdue, and other top colleges. But who they become next is more notable: epidemiologists, book editors, engineers, county supervisors, corporate attorneys, artists, and more.

How our program works

Our visionary course sequence known as Integrated Studies transforms girls into changemakers. Across all grades, planned learning experiences teach our students to:

Tussle
with
real-world
problems

Work
together
in diverse
teams

Think about
challenges
from different
angles

Step up
and speak up
when you
see a possible
solution

How it progresses

Two Lower School students working on a math project.

Lower School

Integrated learning begins in lower grades where subjects blur together naturally. It’s common for Ellis girls to learn about science, history, art and more—all in one multi-sensory learning project.
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A Middle School student in a classroom, wearing an Ellis sweatshirt.

Middle School

Learning across subjects builds in middle school with a focused capstone project for each grade.

For example, eighth graders combine science, arts and entrepreneurial thinking—plus healthy doses of leadership and creativity—to design a car.
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An Upper School student in a science lab.

Upper School

Integrated Studies builds with a different thematic focus (self, community, outside world, capstone) each year.

It culminates in a “passion project” that combines each student’s talents and interests in a project executed outside the school. Seniors create their own projects—like working with nonprofits.
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What passion projects look like

Senior projects are a chance for students to create their own paths: to look outside themselves and spark conversations that drive changes in the world.

Improving Pittsburgh

Improving Pittsburgh

Creating a guidebook for new immigrant families while interning at Welcoming Pittsburgh, a mayor’s office initiative for citywide inclusivity.

Tackling Health Issues

Tackling health issues

Creating a video documentary on the opioid epidemic to raise awareness of the dangers of drug abuse.

Helping the World Speak as One

Helping the world speak as one

Translating works from English to Japanese for the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Toy Lending Library.

Growing Future Scientists

Growing future scientists

Developing kids chemistry lessons for an after-school program through Assemble, a STEAM organization in Garfield.

About Ellis

100+

years of immersive education tailored to the empowerment of girls

100%

of graduates report that Ellis encourages high academic expectations

100%

of graduates attend four-year colleges or universities