151 Commonwealth Avenue,
Boston MA 02116
A small independent day school for boys and girls in grades 9 through 12, Commonwealth is located in Boston’s Back Bay, two blocks from Copley Square.
With its diverse population of students from the greater Boston area, Commonwealth forms a unique community built on academic rigor, constructive energy, and mutual respect. In a friendly and supportive atmosphere, teachers are advisors, mentors, and intellectual colleagues to their students. Together they explore the worlds of the humanities, sciences, and mathematics, as well as the arts and the city of Boston itself. The excitement of discovery spills beyond the classrooms into all aspects of students’ lives.
Close individual attention: Class size averages 11; teachers have weekly one-on-one meetings with their advisees; dedicated college advisors counsel seniors. Several programs help students manage the transition to a demanding school. Those seeking extra help, an academic discussion, or, simply, conversation, find office doors always open—including the Headmaster’s. He, moreover, teaches ethics seminars to all new students and seniors.
Beyond the School walls: During Project Week (Project Month for seniors), each student intensively pursues a personal interest, often in a scientific, business, artistic, or other professional setting. Individually and in groups, students perform community service across the city. The school year is punctuated by a number of all-school outings: museum day; attending a play or concert; beach day in June. Two extended all-school weekends in Maine provide a group experience vital to the School’s cohesive spirit. Every aspect—from planning and cooking meals to organizing activities—is carried out by students and faculty working together.
Substantial student influence in the life of the School: Electives frequently arise from student interest—most recently, courses in space-time physics and psychology. Students run publications and clubs, serve as peer tutors, and act as guides to applicants and their families. Two seniors serve as representatives to the Board of Trustees.
At Commonwealth we want our students to develop the intellectual tools that are indispensable if reason, not habit, is to guide their thinking and if spirited engagement, not idle consumption, is to characterize their actions. We encourage them to learn about themselves and the world through the lenses of various disciplines, and to cultivate moral imaginations that will enable them to step out of their first-person perspectives and examine words and actions from others’ points of view. We hope they will see that using their talents to serve those around them with thoughtful intelligence will not only improve the lot of others, but also bring deep and abiding satisfaction. Students here are challenged—by the books they read, the arts they practice, the responsibilities they take on, and the many faces of Boston they meet—to cultivate sharp minds and generous hearts.