Henry Barnard Laboratory School – or HBS, as we refer to it – is a unique and exciting place located at the intersection of great learning, great friendships, and great personal growth. Henry Barnard is a place where each of us can come, engage in dialogue, share ideas, learn new skills, and master new information in an atmosphere that is safe and welcoming. When you come visit us in person, we believe that you’ll experience a warmth and hospitality that is genuine, and that makes you feel quickly part of our HBS family.
•What’s the size of HBS?
Our current enrollment is just below 300. There are limits we place on enrollment to ensure good teacher to student ratios. Preschool: 16 per class with two teachers; Kindergarten: 18 per class with one teacher; Grades 1-5: no more than 25 per class with one teacher. (K-5 also has Associate Teacher interaction.)
Currently, we have fifteen classroom specialists in PK-5, six discipline-specific specialists who interact with art, music, Spanish language, physical education, technology education and library & media sciences, and two Intervention specialists who work with learners who may need additional help or additional challenges. Additionally, we have a full-time school counselor and full-time nurse on campus, and five associate teachers (fully licensed professionals) who work with classroom specialists for a number of hours per week.
•Where is HBS located?
Our school is sited at the heart of the Rhode Island College Campus, right at the top of the hill between Mount Pleasant and Fruit Hill Avenues. RIC is the state’s premier and oldest teacher preparation school, and HBS is proud to have been part of the College for 115 years now. Due to our unique affiliation, our faculty – who are also College faculty – has the ability to regularly interact with their colleagues in RIC’s Feinstein School of Education and Human Development, for purposes of research, sharing strategies, and pioneering cutting-edge educational curriculum and practices. We also regularly host RIC Education majors who observe in our classrooms, undertake small-group instruction under the direction of their faculty, and student-teach in the new "co-teaching" model pioneered at RIC in 2011-2102. The result of these interactions is a curriculum rich with innovation and engagement which empowers our learners to start to take control of their own learning. It’s an exciting place to be!
•Who comes to HBS? And where do they go when they leave?
The demographics of our school are excellent. We purposely enroll about equal numbers of males and females, and work to keep our classes gender-balanced over the years. About 35% of the population are minorities. HBS learners represent a wide spectrum of learning abilities and learning styles, for whom we do our best to differentiate – and when necessary, to intervene with appropriate assistance or advanced challenges. Geographically, most of our learners come from central to northern RI and the greater Providence metro area, though some do travel from nearby Massachusetts each day. For RI learners, transportation is available via the City of Providence or Statewide Transportation.
When they leave HBS, our rising sixth graders go virtually anywhere they choose. HBS is represented in all the region’s private schools, many parochial middle and high schools, and in most of the state’s school district middle and high schools.
•How do HBS learners do academically?
The results from NECAP testing support that HBS learners are in the top percentile of learners in Rhode Island. Admissions to other schools in the area reinforce that our learners leave here prepared to excel wherever they go, and comments from teachers who have worked with HBS alumni/ae indicate that they find our learners to be strong critical thinkers, active learners, and citizens of good character.
•How do you view parent interaction?
We are committed in our mission of supporting you in the education of your child, and we assign your input great value. Our faculty understands our partnership with families, and all of us endeavor to keep lines of communication open. Faculty and administration are available to meet with you by appointment, to respond to your e-mail, and to take your phone call. You will find a listing of our e-mail addresses and phone contact information in the Family Handbook, which is accessible by clicking on the box in the right sidebar of all our web pages. Parents are encouraged to become active in the life of the school by volunteering, by serving as room parents, and especially by being active in our great partner organization, the Henry Barnard School Parents’ Association. You can find out more about the HBSPA by visiting their website.
•Can my family afford HBS?
Yes. We are one of the last great educational bargains in the state. Tuition rates are significantly lower than those of other non-public, independent schools. An investment in your child’s learning will go farther at HBS than it will just about anywhere else, and will yield a great return! Scholarships are available for qualifying students, and for minority children residing in Providence, some or all of the tuition may be paid by the City of Providence through the Providence-Barnard Plan.
•How can I find out more?
The best way to get to know HBS is to visit in person. We will be happy to set a time with you. Call our office at 401-456-8624 and speak with Mr. Haven Starr, or send an e-mail to request an appointment. Private tours are generally conducted between 9:00-11:00am most school days.