Teaching self-advocacy to young women is a crucial aspect of preparing them for high school, college, and beyond. The Resolve program teaches verbal and physical self-defense skills and is based on self-empowerment, rather than fear. Each grade receives an age-appropriate course. Students practice trusting their intuition in assessing strangers and resisting boundary-crossing and manipulation by authority figures. They learn to de-escalate and to set strong boundaries with their body language and tone of voice, as well as effective self-defense to back up their words. By eighth grade, the course addresses the broader context of violence against women, consent, and the anatomy of acquaintance rape. In response, they develop high expectations for interpersonal relationships, a sense of their personal power and how strong women are.
We are fortunate to own nine acres on the lower Santa Fe River. This site serves as the field laboratory for our Environmental Science Program in which students lead an ongoing riparian habitat and wetland restoration project. Girls become scientists themselves as they monitor the site and collect and analyze data relating to biodiversity, the health of the river, and its ecology. At the end of each academic year, the students present and discuss their data and analyses at a public forum. Their data is shared with public agencies and helps to inform public policy as it relates to watershed management.
We are actively growing our Adventure Education program and need your help to make it thrive! Whether exploring caves and pueblos in Western New Mexico or catching pollywogs on camping trips, we integrate regular and consistent opportunities to learn outside of the classroom. Our students brave snow storms during hikes and take Santa Fe River water samples at the PRESERVE on early, wet mornings. They take advantage of sunny days to paint watercolors at the Botanical Gardens, build giant bubbles and catapults in our backyard arroyo and summon the courage to meet the challenges of a ropes course. At SFGS we believe in the power of learning-by-doing and build programs that encourage students to explore the world outside the classroom.
We value adolescence as a pivotal time, rich in social and emotional development. We harness this momentum by dedicating classes to emotional intelligence, effective failure, stress management and conflict resolution, among other topics. We know that with support and guidance from adults who understand adolescents, a child has the potential to become a resilient and emotionally strong young adult. In order to be prepared for high school, we believe young women must have twenty-first century information about essential topics including: age-appropriate reproductive health, media literacy, consent, body image and healthy eating, and information about sexual orientation and gender identities.
Our financial aid is entirely need-based. The Girls’ School strives to create an atmosphere of inclusiveness and diversity, and this effort underlies our Financial Aid Fund. We seek to make our education as widely available as possible and work diligently to keep our tuition costs as low as possible. The School seeks donations to expand its Financial Aid Fund so that no girl is turned away for lack of funds.
Our traditional New Mexican woodcarving program provides a unique interdisciplinary experience for our sixth-grade students. They practice precision in calculation and measurement as they develop their own geometric design, inspired by the rich Moorish traditions of our region. With the focus and hand-eye coordination necessary to the task, the girls apprentice to a master woodcarver who guides them as they practice their new skills and, finally, carve their intricate design onto fine, handcrafted traditional pine furniture.
Without safe, reliable transportation we wouldn’t be able to run the level of adventurous programming that we do. We were fortunate to buy a bus this fall, and with your generous support we can offset the cost of such a large and crucial capital expense.