The Gordon School

The Gordon School community of courageous learners and compassionate leaders challenges students to develop their full potential by inspiring their minds and imaginations, nurturing an interest in lifelong learning and fostering involvement in the world beyond Gordon.
The Gordon School was founded in 1910 by a female pediatrician for her son Gordon.
Today, Gordon continues to be the choice for families who seek a coeducational environment that challenges both the intellects and imaginations of elementary and middle school students.
The nursery through eighth grade structure allows a focus on the crucial early years when the foundations of academic and social learning are laid.
Academics, arts, music and athletics are grounded in real life applications, from the gardens maintained by three year old scientists to the four week service learning projects eighth graders complete as the culmination of their study of citizenship and American history. Gordon eighth graders benefit from a secondary school placement process that results in graduates entering high schools of their choice as scholars, leaders, and good citizens.
The school's longtime commitment to being a racially diverse institution extends throughout the student body, faculty, Board of Trustees and administration.
Gordon has been recognized as a national leader in multicultural education, sending faculty to present at conferences nationwide and hosting a Middle School Institute that draws teachers from across the United States.

Top Placements

The Gordon School places among the top 20% of private schools in Rhode Island for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
Association of Independent Schools in New England (AISNE)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades Prekindergarten-8
Year Founded1910

Student Body

Total Students332 students
Student Body TypeCo-ed
% Students of Color
State avg.: 22%
Students by Grade The Gordon School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers44 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio8:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size16 students
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Matriculation DataMatric. DataLink to Matriculation Data
Classroom Dress CodeCasual

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineFeb. 1 / rolling
Yearly Tuition Cost$35,500
Tuition NotesGordon uses Family Individualized Tuition, in which every family provides financial data and is given a customized price. The minimum for next year is $3500, the maximum is $35500. Learn more at
Admissions DirectorVeronica Jutras
Endowment Size$11 million


Total Sports Offered8 sports
SportsBaseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Field Hockey, Lacrosse, Soccer, Tennis, Track and FieldBaseballBasketball,
Cross CountryField Hockey,
TennisTrack and Field,


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.22 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Arts Council, Fifth grade robotics club, Gender and sexuality alliance, Geography Bee, Homework Club, Intro to STEM, Knitting Circle, Math Counts, math mentors, Robotics Team, Save the Bay, Student Government

Arts and Music Programs:
A Cappella Choir, Drumming Circle, Hip Hop Dance, Shadow puppets, Theater Production, Woodworking, Young Rembrandts

Recreational Athletic Programs:
Sailing Camp, Winter fitness, Yoga

School Notes

  • The Gordon School is a racially diverse nursery through eighth grade coeducational independent school in East Providence, Rhode Island. Child by child, the Gordon School community cultivates successful students by inspiring joyful learning, encouraging intellectual leadership, fostering an empathic spirit and stimulating a drive for positive societal impact.
  • Guiding Principles
  • We emphatically believe that each of the following five principles is essential for the success of our mission:
  • Our curriculum is rooted in multicultural practice, which develops academic skills, thinking strategies, active imaginations and children`s social competencies
  • We teach students to investigate and study concepts and topics from multiple perspectives, a basic skill for success in school and in life
  • Students are challenged and inspired to be active workers toward their education
  • As articulated in the Gordon School Statement on Inclusivity, we create and sustain a diverse community of faculty, staff, students and families
  • As multicultural educators, our teachers strive to establish relationships of understanding and trust with each child and his or her family
  • Founding Purpose
  • Founded in the fall of 1910 by pediatrician Dr. Helen West Cooke as the Open Air School, Gordon began in Dr. Cooke`s living room on the East Side of Providence. Windows were kept open year round to foster good health and clear thinking. In that year, Dr. Cooke`s son Gordon and a neighbor, Margaret Arthur, comprised the school`s first class. In this way, Gordon became Rhode Island`s only non-public coeducational school.
  • Today, the school remains true to its progressive roots. We seek to instill what Dr. Cooke termed "the true spirit of joyous work" into each day of school. Our faculty implements a challenging multicultural curriculum to fuel each child`s innate curiosity and idealistic spirit. We prepare our students to enter an increasingly complex and diverse world with skillful awareness, unwavering hope and the capacity to advocate confidently for justice.
  • As Gordon enters its second century, we proudly follow the directive highlighted on the bronze plaque that was placed at our entrance at the time of the school`s move to this beautiful 12-acre campus in 1963: "The Gordon School: founded in 1910 in the belief that mind and heart should be educated with equal care."
  • The Gordon School Statement on Inclusivity
  • Gordon proudly honors each individual within its community. The school respects the customs, traditions, values and perspectives of individuals of different gender, race, religion, socioeconomic status, family configuration, sexual orientation, ethnicity, ability and age. The faculty actively teaches students to confidently consider multiple perspectives, examine and express their own beliefs and respond respectfully to the ideas and beliefs of others. To the greatest extent possible, Gordon takes steps to ensure equal and equitable participation for all members of the school community. Gordon`s emphasis on inclusivity, an evolving process, is essential to its mission to prepare students for active citizenship in the world.
Show me:
Show me:
  • School Location Miles Grades Students
  • Barrington
     St. Luke's
    (Roman Catholic)
    Grades: PK-8 | 179 students
    3.8 miles
    10 Waldron Ave.
    Barrington, RI 02806
    (401) 246-0990
    3.8 PK-8
  • Providence
    Grades: PK-5 | 298 students
    5.1 miles
    600 Mount Pleasant Ave
    Providence, RI 02908
    (401) 456-8801
    5.1 PK-5
  • Providence
    Grades: NS-8
    1.9 miles
    75 John Street
    Providence, RI 02906
    (401) 274-3325
    1.9 NS-8
  • Johnston
    Trinity Christian Academy
    (Assembly of God)
    Grades: PK-12 | 70 students
    8.5 miles
    2119 Hartford Ave
    Johnston, RI 02919
    (401) 934-0208
    8.5 PK-12
  • North Providence
    Grades: PK-8 | 145 students
    5.5 miles
    15 Edendale Avenue
    North Providence, RI 02911
    (401) 351-0403
    5.5 PK-8

School Reviews

  5.00 out of 5  (5 reviews)
We feel so lucky to have our kids at Gordon. Every day, they are excited to go to school, where they are growing socially and intellectually, and engaging meaningfully with the world they inhabit. As parents, we also feel like full members of the Gordon community--learning and growing right alongside our children. It's truly a full-family experience!
- Posted by
I am the parent of two Gordon children and I love the teachers, curriculum, and community. My oldest began in first grade and my youngest began in preschool (age 4-5). My oldest began below benchmark in reading and in the early weeks of the year, was in a program that allows teachers and specialists to work more intensively with students who need more support. The ability to have differentiated instruction (more challenge or more support) was one of the things that drew me to Gordon. Her transition to her class and the community was pretty seamless. Within a week, you couldn't tell she was the new kid. It seemed like everyone in the surrounding grades knew her and greeted her with care and love. Despite being a bit "behind" and a methodical, cautious kid who takes her time, she was never stigmatized for being "slow." Her teachers showed an appreciation for her learning style and a commitment to helping her strengthen her skills while keeping a love of reading. I worried that being "behind" would leave my kid feeling frustrated and discouraged. On the contrary, she moved through and beyond the benchmarks because she loved reading! At Gordon, my kids (and I) are seen and valued for who we are. They're skilled, caring, and empathic teachers have nurtured their love of learning, challenging and supporting each of them where they are at any given moment. Equally important, my children have developed a deep respect for and sense of responsibility to their community and to the world. This, for me, is the true value of education: to learn to think, to analyze, to communicate, and to keep learning for the sake of having an impact on the world to make it a better place!
- Posted by
We think of Gordon as our third parent, giving our two children the opportunity to grow and take risks in a nurturing environment. The diversity and keen attention to social justice is woven inextricably into the curriculum, resulting in academic excellence that prepares our children for a lifetime of empathy and connection. Modeling lifelong learning, Gordon's teachers are tireless in their pursuit professional development. The practice of teaching to every child is complex, yet they approach each challenge as an opportunity to expand their expertise. We feel that the school is in partnership with our family to grow and nurture our children with joy and playful curiosity.
- Posted by
Our Fifth grader has been at Gordon since Kindergarten. We were immediately drawn to the school because there was an obvious focus and celebration of childhood, Academic programs are excellent and the faculty highly supportive and encouraging to the students. Our Bi-racial child sees classmates, teachers and administration that look like him. Everyone is respected and celebrated for who they are. We love it!
- Posted by
Gordon takes the time to get to know not only your student in meaningful ways, but also your entire family. There is a joyful spirit of curiousness and exploration at all grade levels, and our children love going to school. Gordon's focus on equity and inclusion is an essential part of the community fabric, and we consider Gordon a third parent in helping shape our girls' sense of themselves in relation to others in caring and compassionate ways.
- Posted by

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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in Rhode Island is $10,553 for elementary schools and $27,374 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Rhode Island is 74% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).