Garrison Forest School

  • A Baltimore area independent Day and Boarding college preparatory school for girls with a coeducational two-year-old through Pre-Kindergarten program, Garrison Forest School is dedicated to the intellectual, aesthetic, emotional, moral, physical and spiritual growth of its students.
  • The school seeks to develop within each student a strong sense of integrity, identity and self-esteem, reflecting its motto Esse Quam Videri: "To be and not to seem." The school's primary commitment is to develop and maintain a strong academic program designed to foster a spirit of inquiry, intellectual independence and enthusiasm for learning. Students are expected and encouraged to achieve their potential through a traditional program enhanced by innovative approaches. They are challenged, in and out of the classroom, to lead, to serve, to make decisions and to accept responsibilities for consequences.
  • Respect, trust, warmth and joy combine to create an atmosphere in which all members of the School community can grow.
  • Ultimately, the goal of Garrison Forest School is for each student to become confident and prepared to contribute to a complex and challenging world.

Top Placements

Garrison Forest School places among the top 20% of private schools in Maryland for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.National Coalition of Girls
National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS)
Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools
AIMSMDDC (Assoc. of independent Maryland and DC Schools)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades Nursery/Preschool-12
ADD/ADHD SupportYes
Year Founded1910

Student Body

Total Students456 students
Student Body TypeAll-girls
% Students of Color
State avg.: 32%
Students by Grade Garrison Forest School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers50 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio9:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size15 students
Number of AP Courses15 courses
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Advanced CoursesBiology, Calculus AB, Calculus BC, Chemistry, Chinese Language and Culture, Computer Science, English Language and Composition, English Literature, Environmental Science, French Language and Culture, Latin, Psychology, Spanish Language and Culture, Statistics, U.S. History
Matriculation DataMatric. DataLink to Matriculation Data
Classroom Dress CodeFormal

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineJan. 15 / rolling
Tuition NotesTuition ranges from $5,900 for three-day 3's to $66,810 for international boarding
% on Financial Aid
Admissions DirectorCatie Gibbons
Endowment Size$44 million


Total Sports Offered18 sports
SportsBadminton, Basketball, Cross Country, Dance, Equestrian, Field Hockey, Golf, Indoor Soccer, Lacrosse, Mountain Biking, Polo, Soccer, Softball, Squash, Tennis, Track and Field, Volleyball, Winter TrackBadmintonBasketball,
Cross CountryDance,
EquestrianField Hockey,
GolfIndoor Soccer,
LacrosseMountain Biking,
TennisTrack and Field,
VolleyballWinter Track,


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.23 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Anime Club, Asian Students Association, Black Students Association, Book Club, Christian Club, Debate Club, Fashion Collective, First Aid, Games Club, GREEN Club, International Club, JSA, Literary Magazine, Model UN, Multicultural Student Alliance Club, Politics Club, Riding Club, Robotics Club, Spanish and Latin Clubs

Arts and Music Programs:
Acapella Group, Chorus, Dance, Musical Theater

School Notes

  • Empowering students to achieve their fullest potential and live lives of purpose-this has been the core of Garrison Forest School since its founding in 1910. What was an innovative educational mission for girls at the turn of the 20th century remains so in the 21st century. Throughout our history, our mission has been to prepare young women for a rewarding college experience and for a purposeful life well beyond. Guided by our motto, Esse Quam Videri - To Be Rather Than To Seem - Garrison Forest's curricular and co-curricular program balances exceedingly high standards within a welcoming, spirited atmosphere.
  • Located outside of Baltimore, the school's park-like campus offers collegiate-quality academic, athletic, arts and residential facilities. Our innovative partnership with The Johns Hopkins University, the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) program, matches students with a Hopkins professor and lab to conduct research in science and engineering. Students may apply to be a Jenkins Fellow for an in-depth service learning project of their choice. Our new Equine and Veterinary Science program, expanded Robotics program, arts offerings, competitive interscholastic athletics (including riding and Polo at the national levels) and many clubs meet every interest, broaden horizons and provide leadership development.
  • With Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York City and other Mid-Atlantic cities and states nearby, students enjoy a variety of weekend activities. Here, students flourish intellectually and individually, find their voice, discover their passions and embrace their potential.

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  • School Location Miles Grades Students
  • Owings Mills
    Grades: PK-12 | 1357 students
    2.1 miles
    8600 Mcdonogh Rd
    Owings Mills, MD 21117
    (443) 544-7071
    2.1 PK-12
  • Baltimore
    Grades: PK-12 | 620 students
    7.6 miles
    5204 Roland Avenue
    Baltimore, MD 21210
    (443) 934-3896
    7.6 PK-12
  • Pikesville
    Grades: PK-12 | 806 students
    4.6 miles
    2425 Old Court Road
    Pikesville, MD 21208
    (410) 339-7070
    4.6 PK-12
  • Towson
     Notre Dame Preparatory School
    All-girls (Roman Catholic)
    Grades: 6-12 | 828 students
    9.6 miles
    815 Hampton Lane
    Towson, MD 21286
    (410) 825-6202
    9.6 6-12
  • Baltimore
    Grades: PK-12 | 757 students
    11.4 miles
    109 W Melrose Ave
    Baltimore, MD 21210
    (410) 323-8800
    11.4 PK-12

School Reviews

We only have experience with the Preschool and I cannot recommend it enough. Our son was introduced to "school" through the Two's program and it was a phenomenal way for him to discover and explore his independence. He just finished the Three's program and we've continued to be impressed with teachers and curriculum, including the "specials" of science, gym, music and library. He's happy to go to school and, at this age, I think his enthusiasm for school is more important than academic progress (though he has learned a great deal). The head of the preschool, Zibby, stresses that GFS is a place for families and we've found that to be true. It feels like a home away from home, with wonderful classmates, parents and friends. Our son was admitted to one of the more selective preschools in DC, but we declined the invitation and chose Garrison Forest for this reason. We've never regretted that decision. We're looking forward to our youngest starting the Two's program next fall. She's already so comfortable there, and her first stop during drop-off is always Mrs. Isenhour's office to say hello. It's just a wonderful, nurturing place. We feel so lucky that our kids' first taste of formal education is with people who genuinely care about them.
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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in Maryland is $10,586 for elementary schools and $16,465 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Maryland is 80% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).