Adolescent boys are curious and begin to inquire about the world around them. University School’s academic program challenges middle school boys as they are now ready to tackle more abstract concepts. Our teachers empower boys to become more independent. They provide a structured yet supportive environment in which each boy can build con dence and discover and develop his own ideas and talents.

Asking the Essential Questions

Our curriculum focuses on rigorous skill building in reading, writing, mathematics, and applying the scientific method. Creative writing, essay composition, and public speaking are emphasized. Boys learn to organize their own academic work to become independent learners. They connect with the world by exploring questions that adolescents begin to think about. What does it mean to be an engaged citizen? A student? How do you develop your own voice as a listener? Observer? Creator? Problem solver? Agent of change? What does it mean to thrive? As a middle schooler? A civilization? At US, we cultivate inquisitive minds.


Through reading and writing workshops, boys develop critical skills and perspectives as they grow in reading, writing, and language usage, as well as speaking and listening. Boys learn to develop their own writing voice. They learn to interpret and analyze literature on a deep level, and participate in dialogue with peers.

Boys develop scientific inquiry skills such as making observations, inferences, and predictions, while being challenged to expand their critical thinking and problem- solving skills. They are active learners who engage in hands- on, laboratory-based assignments. We encourage boys to think like scientists, to take ownership of their learning, and to intellectually step outside the classroom boundaries to explore science in our world.

Boys develop self-confidence relating to mathematics, as well as their ability to think logically and become effective problem solvers. Problem-solving skills and articulation of solution strategies are woven throughout the curriculum to relate mathematics to the world around them. Boys have ample opportunities to study higher-level concepts with our advanced math courses offered in each grade. 

Our teachers know the most effective way to bring out a boy’s best effort is to cultivate a genuine love of language in a challenging and creative classroom. Many cultural and content-based units are an essential part of the curriculum of each language offered: French, Spanish, and Latin. Boys strive to master the core skills and knowledge that will lay a foundation for further study in high school.

Boys learn to develop their voice and their global awareness. They explore how and why a culture flourishes, even when faced with great difficulties. Their studies focus on key cultural conflicts that have shaped the American personality, the geopolitical structure and cultures of the Middle East, and current events at home and overseas. Field studies include trips to Chicago, Washington D.C., and the Ohio frontier. 

Our arts faculty inspire boys of all skill levels and interests to develop their own artistic expression and discover their passion. The visual art curriculum is intentionally designed to challenge and motivate middle school boys through both small and large projects that provide opportunity for student choice and self-expression. In music classes, emphasis is placed on learning creative processes, which encompass performance, composition, improvisation, and listening. Boys may join the Middle School Orchestra, Jazz Band, Chamber Players, and Choral Ensemble. Every middle school boy has the opportunity to express himself through acting, movement, and public speaking. 

Boys love to build, create, and learn by doing. US teachers guide and support them, while allowing the boys to be the creators and collaborators. Our design technology program takes a modern approach to the manual arts with the integration of 3D technology combined with hands-on applications. Emphasis is placed on boys experimenting with their independent ideas and applying them in a team-building environment. Boys can tinker, create, and build in our state-of-the-art woodshop and our design lab, STEAMworks, which is built for innovation. 

At US, a "House" is a Home

The House system is the heart of our school, bonding boys together across all grades for friendship and support. Boys in the same House share a sense of spirit and pride across the community. Service and stewardship are integral elements of the House system, with students working together to be responsible. On Founders’ Day, the Houses gather for camaraderie, celebration, and friendly competition. Students learn to work together with their housemates, and to be responsible and respectful. The House system is central to the student experience.

Our Teachers Love What They Do

US teachers are attuned to the needs, pace, rhythm, and strengths of middle school boys and their learning. These highly qualified, creative educators, most of whom hold advanced degrees, are carefully selected for their ability to communicate, connect, and inspire. Your son will be assignedafacultyadvisortooverseehisacademicand personal progress and to serve as a liaison between the school and the family. Our teachers are tireless supporters of the boys inside and outside the classroom.

Middle School Admission Director

List of 1 members.

Why a School for Boys

Schools for boys focus with intention on learning that addresses not only how to excel in academics but also how to grow into a young man of integrity and empathy.

• We understand and celebrate boys.
• We know that boys develop and learn in different ways.
• We teach in ways that boys learn best.
• We help students discover and explore their full potential
• We foster brotherhood and lifelong friendships.
• We seek first to build good men.

Information compiled by the International Boys School Coalition. 

Following a Passion

Students in the middle school are empowered to become independent as they start to question the world around them. We offer many opportunities for exploring passions, whether they are researching a topic through a Junior Research Fellows program, starting a business through our Young Entrepreneur Institute, creating music in our digital music production facility, creating art to display in our student art gallery, or performing in our state-of-the-art theater. In addition, our students engage in more than 60 clubs and activities. Students are able to choose membership in groups that best meet their interests and goals.

Playing & Competing

We prepare boys for a lifetime of physical fitness, health, and wellness. We encourage all boys to demonstrate leadership, learn new skills, and refine existing skills while having an opportunity to interact with their classmates on the athletic fields. Middle school athletics emphasize teamwork, good sportsmanship, and competition. University School offers 10 interscholastic athletic teams over three seasons in the middle school. There are “A” and “B” teams in several sports to accommodate every boy’s desire to play and provide him with healthy competition consistent with his ability.

Affording US

If a student is the right fit for our school, our goal is to make the cost of tuition the right fit for his family. Learn more about how US is making independent education accessible by visiting

Shaker Heights Campus

20701 Brantley Road
Shaker Heights, Ohio 44122
GRADES Junior K-8
Phone: 216-321-8260

Hunting Valley Campus

2785 SOM Center Road
Hunting Valley, OH 44022
Phone: 216-831-2200
University School serves 870 boys in Junior Kindergarten to grade 12 on two campuses in suburban Cleveland, Ohio. The School’s mission is to inspire boys of promise to become young men of character who lead and serve. Dedicated faculty, rigorous curriculum, and experiential programs foster intellectual, physical, creative, and moral excellence.