Middle School Matriculation
Quick Matriculation Facts
In the last nine years (2015–2023), 73% of PBS students were admitted to their “first choice” school, including public and independent schools.
In the last nine years, 87% of PBS students were admitted to one or more of their top three schools.
In the last seven years, 92% of PBS 5th-graders were admitted to one or more of their top five schools.
100% of PBS 5th-graders leave prepared to be outstanding members of their new communities.
When their time at Phillips Brooks School nears its end and middle school beckons, PBS students receive mentorship and guidance to help them navigate the competitive and complicated world of middle school applications. Teachers and administrators work hard to prepare students for their campus visit days, interviews, and application essays; to ensure that they explore schools that best suit their academic and extracurricular interests, their learning styles, and their personalities; and to advocate for them with the schools they’ve applied to.
Some of the ways we support students and families in this process are:
- A dedicated middle school consultant, former Associate Head of School, Lisa Busby, oversees the matriculation process from start to finish, sharing her many years of experience on both sides of this process with our families.
- Individual parent meetings are scheduled in the spring of 4th grade and continue throughout 5th grade to provide and customize full support to each family.
- 5th-grade parents receive a middle school blog designed to keep them on top of each step of the process.
- Students prepare for middle school campus visits and interviews with Lisa Busby.
- Students practice writing personal narrative essays in 5th grade, gaining confidence and comfort in writing about themselves for application essays.
- Parents and students are engaged in ongoing, personalized support throughout the process – from school selection and application materials, to final enrollment.
Overall, the PBS program is designed to prepare students for middle school learning environments; admission results bear out the excellence of our program and the high desirability of PBS students among schools throughout the region, even in the context of a competitive landscape. Ultimately, PBS alums tell the true story of their formative years with us. They are happy, academically prepared, curious, and kind people who bring their love of learning into their middle school years and beyond.
Here are some specific comments from middle school admissions directors:
“PBS students are thoughtful leaders during campus visits.”
“We can always tell when PBS kids are here because they are excellent listeners and classroom participants.”
“Admissions offices see PBS kids as well prepared for middle school.”
“PBS students are not afraid to make mistakes and reflect on how mistakes help them learn.”
“PBS 5th-graders are inclusive and embrace diversity.”
“PBS students roll up their sleeves and dive into the process of solving a problem, even when the solution is not obvious.”