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Historic Schools Considering Collaboration That Preserves the Legacy and Impact of All-Girls Education
Oldfields School plans to partner with Garrison Forest School to offer opportunities for student enrollment and preservation of traditions.

Oldfields School in Sparks Glencoe, Md., announced today it will close after the current academic year, with the additional announcement of a potential collaboration with Garrison Forest School. The collaboration will provide their current students with a transition plan as well as ensure the preservation of the Oldfields School legacy, while at the same time strengthening Garrison Forest by bringing new students into the community.

These two schools known for delivering an excellent educational experience and impact for young women have signed a letter of intent to partner, ensuring an enduring commitment to their shared educational philosophy. Oldfields School and Garrison Forest School, all-girls, day and boarding schools with rich histories and traditions of excellence, intend to provide a long-lasting, powerful, and impactful educational experience for girls.

Recent trends and obstacles, including the pandemic, have created unique challenges to sustaining financial stability for many independent schools in the region, mirroring a nationwide trend. The proposed collaboration between these distinguished schools would ensure a long-lasting, powerful, and impactful educational experience for girls in the Mid-Atlantic region.

As part of this announcement, Oldfields School’s administration and Trustees emphasized that the education and support of their students are key priorities, adding that the announcement is being made now to provide transparency and as much time as possible for students, their families, faculty and staff to prepare for the 2023-2024 school year.

Through this agreement, the Oldfields School campus would close, and the property would be sold. This collaboration would provide current Oldfields students a home at Garrison Forest, allow both schools’ legacies to live on, and will help further strengthen the boarding program at Garrison Forest, which continues to rebound from pandemic-related challenges. The schools are continuing their good-faith discussions and will share information as details are finalized in the coming weeks.

Oldfields School students would be offered the opportunity to join the Garrison Forest School community, with both schools pledging to assist families and students however needed as they navigate this transition. A streamlined admissions process would take into account each individual family’s needs with both schools agreeing to honor current tuition pricing for any student moving into Garrison’s program.

“There are many similarities between the schools, including incredible reputations and legacies educating thousands of young women, robust day and boarding programs, strong international reach, renowned equestrian programs, a powerful sense of community, and much more,” states Nancy Palmer, Interim Head of Oldfields School. “By partnering with Garrison Forest School, the Board of Trustees and I feel, as does Garrison Forest School, that this is a great alignment of values, programs, and shared commitment to educating young women of impact and substance. We are working with Garrison Forest School to find ways to preserve the Oldfields School legacy that is cherished by so many generations of Oldfields School alumni, as well as provide continuity for future generations.”

Both schools have a rich history when it comes to educating young women. Oldfields was founded in 1867 by Anna Austen McCulloch, who was one of the first to teach math and science to girls. Garrison Forest was founded in 1910 by Mary Moncrieffe Livingston, whose vision for her school included academic rigor combined with exceptional character building. Now, over one hundred years later, the shared vision of these programs will continue to instill strength and kindness in their students.

“Garrison Forest welcomes the voices, perspectives, and contributions that Oldfields students will bring to the campus. Together, both schools can continue educating women of impact who are prepared to make their mark on the world,” said Chris Hughes, Head of School at Garrison Forest. “We are excited to continue to explore a collaboration that further strengthens the educational experience for more girls, and we are grateful to be able to provide an opportunity for current Oldfields School students to thrive as part of our community.”

For further information, please contact:
Oldfields School:
Francesca Troiano, Director of Communications and Marketing,, 443-662-1021

Garrison Forest School: Michelle Placek, Director of Communications and Marketing,, 410-559-3133

Oldfields School, a boarding and day school for girls in grades 8-12, was established in 1867 by Anna Austen McCulloch and was the first girls' boarding school in the State of Maryland.

Garrison Forest School in Owings Mills, Maryland, is a day and boarding school educating girls in grades K-12, with a coed preschool.

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