Mission & Fast Facts

Mission & Fast Facts

Mission Statement

The Lab School of Washington is an innovative learning community fostering scholarship and creativity in students with language-based learning differences. In an environment of inquiry and hands-on exploration, Lab School students learn to advocate for themselves as they become engaged and compassionate members of a global society.

For 50 years, The Lab School of Washington has been providing an exceptional, college-preparatory academic experience for students (grades 1-12) with ADHD, dyslexia, and other language-based learning differences (often referred to as specific learning disabilities). Our innovative, arts-centered curriculum is experiential and multi-sensory, helping young people to overcome difficulties with reading, spelling, writing, and math, while preparing them for a range of rewarding college and career choices.

Watch our video Through My Lens -- featuring Lab students and alumni speaking about The Lab School experience.

Our Goals

The goals of The Lab School of Washington are to:
  • provide a rigorous, college-preparatory education that ensures all students reach their potential;
  • prepare students for a lifetime of learning through an engaging education that fosters curiosity and eagerness to take on academic and experiential challenges;
  • provide intensive, systematic remediation and differentiated instruction;
  • take full advantage of the visual and performing arts to facilitate the education process;
  • bring multi-sensory and experiential learning methods into the classroom;
  • support and educate parents about learning differences;
  • explore new methodologies in the field of learning differences; 
  • incorporate the most effective technologies into all Lab School programs;
  • provide robust professional development opportunities for faculty and staff; and
  • share the results of its programs with public and private schools that serve students who learn in both traditional and non-traditional ways.

Fast Facts

  • Founded in 1967 by Sally L. Smith
  • Head of School, Katherine Schantz
  • History of The Lab School
  • Independent School, grades 1-12, college preparatory and co-educational
  • Approximately 380 students from Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia
  • Two campuses in the Palisades neighborhood of Northwest, District of Columbia. Foxhall campus: Grades 1-4; Reservoir campus: Grades 5-12
  • 4:1 student teacher ratio, lower grades; 8:1 student/teacher ratio, upper grades
  • Highly trained and experienced faculty and staff; 80% of faculty have advanced degrees, most in Special Education
  • More than 90% of students continue their education at a college or university
  • On-campus integrated Clinical Services, (speech-language therapy, occupational therapy, and psychological services) are available for Lab School students as well as for the public
  • 2017-2018 School Year from August 28, 2017 to June 8, 2018
  • 2018-2019 School Year from September 4, 2018 to June 14, 2019
  • School hours are from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM
  • Pioneering arts-centered curriculum taught across all academic subjects
  • Academic Club Methodology immerses younger students in themed spaces designed to foster student engagement where students occupy the roles of historic cultural leaders as they create hands-on projects that bring a compelling past world to life.Every Lab School student is supported with an individualized learning plan (ILP) or individualized education plan (IEP) which may include recommendations for clinical services and accommodations
  • Shuttle service to several Metro stops and other suburban MD and VA locations
  • Championship-winning debate team with membership in the DC Urban Debate League and the local Chapter of the National Forensics League
  • Eye to Eye Peer Mentoring Program chapter
  • Athletic Affiliations: Independent Small School Athletic Conference (ISSAC) Maryland Independent School Athletic League (MISAL); Independent School Athletic Conference (ISAC)
  • Championship Sports Teams: 26 school teams
  • 2009-2010, 2010-2011 and 2011-12 Girls Varsity Basketball ISSAC Champions
  • 2009-2010 Boys Varsity Basketball ISSAC Champion
  • 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 Middle School Boys Basketball ISSAC Champions
  • 2014 Girls Varsity Soccer ISSAC Champions
  • After School Program
  • The Lab School meets the requirements of the District of Columbia Public School system as well as the pertinent local jurisdictions
  • Students are ungraded at Elementary and Intermediate Levels
  • Juniors participate in year-long internships
  • Accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges & Schools
  • Memberships: National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS); The Association of Independent Schools of Greater Washington (AISGW); Association of Independent Maryland and DC Schools (AIMS)
The Difference is Extraordinary
The Lab School of Washington
4759 Reservoir Road, NW | Washington, DC 20007-1921 | 202-965-6600