The Browning School continues its commitment to the goals of John A. Browning:
the pursuit of academic excellence and a lifelong love of learning,
the belief in the dignity of the individual,
the development of personal integrity and responsibility to the broader community.
The Browning boy develops amid these values.
The Browning alumnus is a good citizen,
sensitive to the needs of others,
respectful of divergent yet informed opinions.
He is, in the best sense of the word, a gentleman.
|School Membership(s)School Assoc.||National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS)
Other special emphasis association(s)
|Grades Offered||Grades Kindergarten - 12|
|Total Students||396 students|
|Student Body Type||All-boys|
|% Students of Color||18% (NY School Avg.: 28%)|
|Students by Grade|
Academics and Faculty
|Total Classroom Teachers||59 teachers|
|Student : Teacher Ratio||7:1 (National school avg.: 13:1)|
|List of Courses Offered||Link to List of Courses|
|Classroom Dress Code||Formal|
Finances and Admission
|Admission Deadline||None / Rolling|
|Yearly Tuition Cost||$41,200|
|Admissions Director||Janetta Lien|
|Total Sports Offered||11 sports|
|Sports||Baseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Fencing, Golf,
Ice Hockey, Soccer, Squash, Tennis, Track and Field, Winter TrackBaseball, Basketball,
Cross Country, Fencing,
Golf, Ice Hockey,
Tennis, Track and Field,
|Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.||22 extracurriculars|
|ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.||Amnesty International, Art, Ceramics, Certamen, Chess, Computer, Debate, Drama, Environmental, Gay/Straight Alliance (GSA), Habitat for Humanity, Investment, Latin, Math, Mock Trial, Model UN, Multicultural, Photography, Ping Pong, Robotics, Rube-Goldberg, Think Tank Art, Ceramics, Certamen, Chess, Computer, Debate, Drama, Environmental, Investment, Latin, Math, Mock Trial, Model UN, Multicultural, Photography, Ping Pong, Robotics, Rube-Goldberg, Think Tank, Amnesty International,
Gay/Straight Alliance (GSA),
Habitat for Humanity,
- History of the School
The Browning School was founded in 1888 by John A. Browning, a distinguished scholar and gifted teacher. Today, the Browning School still operates on the basic core principles laid down by Mr. Browning more than a century ago: a school for boys, small classes, close personal attention for each student, a wide variety of extracurricular activities, a heavy emphasis on fostering initiative, and a broad course of study that focuses less on developing a student’s memory than his capacity for under- standing. Mr. Browning’s students recall that he concentrated less on grinding facts into his students than on teaching values, good study habits, perspective, and a lifelong love of learning. The school was renowned for its field trips, even going as far as Pittsburgh to visit the U.S. Steel plant.
One of the first students, John D. Rockefeller Jr., recalled Mr. Browning as a remarkable teacher who “inspired interest in learning.” He said Mr. Browning “helped me to study and to concentrate. . . . I owe a great deal to him, more than to any other teacher I ever had.” Arthur Jones succeeded Mr. Browning as headmaster in 1920 and moved the school from West 55th Street to its present location on East 62nd Street. Extracurricular activities expanded in his time. Mr. Jones retired in 1948 and Lyman B. Tobin, a Browning teacher for more than 30 years, became Browning’s third headmaster. Mr. Tobin is remembered fondly by alumni, parents, and friends for his patience, friendliness, and deep under- standing of people. As noted in a Browning newsletter in 1952, Mr. Tobin favored “encouragement and understanding as a means of teaching.”
In 1952, upon Mr. Tobin’s retirement, the school named Charles W. Cook ’38, an alumnus and teacher, as its fourth headmaster. Under his leadership for thirty-six years, the Browning School expanded rapidly. After a lengthy fundraising drive, the School bought the adjoining carriage house and rebuilt it. The new building opened in 1960. The school’s expansion continued in 1967 with the building of a larger gymnasium on the roof, and in the late 1970s with the acquisition of an interest in the building next door. In addition to serving as headmaster, Mr. Cook also was a highly effective teacher. Among 4 the most popular subjects during the 1960s were his courses on American History and sociology. Mr. Cook had that rare ability to make history come alive for his students. He taught not only history but perspective.
In 1988, Stephen M. Clement, III became Browning’s fifth headmaster. Under his leadership the school has continued to expand while maintaining its focus on fostering academic excellence and integrity. Today, the school has over 370 students, more than double its size fifty years ago, but it continues its emphasis on small classes and close personal attention. Under Mr. Clement’s leadership, Browning also has completed a new library, four new science laboratories, two new art studios, and additional classrooms. In addition, Browning has increasingly taken advantage of affiliations with the Hewitt School, the Marymount School, and Interschool. Browning, Hewitt, and Marymount benefit from an informal affiliation that encourages shared opportunities for academics, the arts, and social activities for girls and boys. Interschool, a consortium of eight schools to enhance academic, extracurricular, and administrative sharing, consists of four schools for girls (Brearley, Chapin, Nightingale-Bamford, and Spence), two schools for boys (Browning and Collegiate), and two coeducational schools (Dalton and Trinity).
Although the city and the world have changed enormously since John Browning met with his first four students in 1888, the Browning School today remains committed to providing rigorous academic training for boys in a structured yet warm environment, promoting a love of learning, and nurturing the growth of the student by exposure to diverse opportunities.
R. Thomas Herman ’64
Former Special Writer
The Wall Street Journal
Profile last updated: 09/12/2013
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