What Makes Us Outstanding

One of the unique features of a Bay View Academy Upper School education is that we custom tailor our academic programs to best accommodate each individual student’s needs.  This means students aren't limited to one level of classes.  You’ll find Level 1 students in AP classes, Honors students taking Level 1 classes in subjects where they aren't quite as strong, and with demonstrated ability and teacher recommendations, Level 2 students have the opportunity to move up to Level 1 and even Honors classes.

The Upper School provides an atmosphere in which young women are engaged and challenged in all disciplines, regardless of level.  The rigorous curriculum is taught by an exceptional faculty using several learning styles incorporating hands on learning, group work and Socratic seminars.  Technology is woven through every aspect of student and faculty life, from a curriculum rich in choices to SMART Boards that interface with Elmo projectors in all Math classes.  The Visual Arts Department has a mobile MAC lab and world language students have a state of the art language lab. 

Students have available to them several resources to assist them in their educational process.  Our state of the art library equipped with computers and resources is a place that is always filled with students from 7:30AM to 4:30PM.  The Angell Writing Center is another location where students work with English teachers to improve their writing skills.  The Champlin Math Lab is always buzzing with students who may be checking homework, reviewing new concepts or preparing for tests with the assistance of a math teacher.  

Our science department offers a demanding curriculum.  The classes are alive with activities and experiments.  You may see bouncing balls or flying pigs in physics class. In biology class, students are introduced to DNA analysis using gel electrophoresis or the effect of the environment on enzyme activity.  Hearing an “explosion” or “setting fires” in a safe chemistry lab always sparks the interest of our students.  

The ground floor of Mercy Hall is the hub of the performing arts.  At any time during the day you may walk in on a class that is rehearsing for a production or the area could be filled with the sound of beautiful voices preparing for a liturgy.  After school you may also hear the tapping of feet as young women are learning dance routines.  You may also find yourself in the keyboard lab where young students are learning to play the piano.  Our orchestra students have the opportunity to take advantage of the facilities at the RI Philharmonic Music School where classes are held during the school day.                                 

Advanced Placement Courses are offered in every subject area.  Students earn college credit based on the results of the Advanced Placement Exam.  Juniors and seniors have the opportunity to choose courses outside of our curriculum like Investing in the Stock Market or Astronomy by enrolling in our Virtual High School program.  Our faculty includes several adjunct professors who teach EEP courses.  Upon successful completion of these courses students earn credits from Rhode Island College. 

Student support services are provided by 3 school counselors and a college advisor who work in conjunction with the Director of Guidance.  Recognizing that each year provides challenges and changes, each counselor is assigned to one specific grade. Freshmen have a counselor and an advisor to ease the transition to high school.  Each advisor oversees a group of no more than 10 freshmen.  The group meets several times during the year and discusses topics that are specific to the needs of the freshmen.  It also provides the freshman with a close knit group of friends and another adult within the academy to seek assistance if necessary.  Sophomore year focuses on introducing the student to the many career choices that are available to them.   Guest speakers meet with the sophomores and explain their career and their educational background and answer any questions.  Juniors begin the college search process with the assistance of their school counselor.  They participate in group guidance sessions and advisory periods.  In spring of their junior year they transition to working with the college counselor.

The college application process is the main focus of senior year.  Our college counselor works closely with seniors and their parents throughout the process to determine the best academic and social fit schools, complete all parts of the application and file financial aid forms.  This will be accomplished through individual and small group meetings, classroom visits and advisory presentations.  Each student will be provided with the resources and advocacy to make the most appropriate college choice.  In addition, both the junior counselor and college counselor work closely with our student-athletes to assist them with the process of becoming eligible to compete in collegiate athletics.  In conjunction with the Athletic Department, the School Counseling Department hosts a NCAA/Recruiting Workshop each year for our student-athletes and their families.

The Bay View community gets its second breath when the bell rings at 2:33PM.  Athletes are off to games or a practice and individual classrooms are filled with clubs planning exciting activities.  These events include opportunities for socializing with the opposite sex in a relaxed fun-filled atmosphere.  Within the first two weeks of school, freshmen are invited to the Bishop Hendricken campus for Field Night.  Sophomores from both schools participate in a Dodge Ball Challenge Night in early October.  Mixers held for just 9th and 10th grade students of Bay View and Bishop Hendricken allow for another venue for the two groups to come together.   On Friday nights under the lights you will recognize many of our young women in the stands cheering for the Bishop Hendricken football team along with the Bay View football cheerleaders.   You may also see our young women and Bishop Hendricken’s young men dining at an ethnic restaurant as many of the World Language clubs plan events together.  They also attend plays and may learn salsa dancing.  Our winter ball, otherwise known as the Crystal, is open to grades 9 through 12.  We have a junior and senior prom and a freshmen social and sophomore semi-formal dance.

St.Mary Academy-Bay View challenges its students to grow in wisdom and passion through a spiritual life of prayer, liturgies and service.   Catherine McAuley, founder of the sponsoring Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, inspires the community to nurture women of principle who understand their life-giving place in the world of the 21st century.   Peer Ministry, Campus Ministry, the Hope Club and a variety of a service projects serve as vehicles to advocate for those in need, women and children and the poor, and to demonstrate reverence for life.



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