Buffalo Seminary offers an additional year for boarders
BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) — A private girls’ school is launching a new program to provide an extra year of high school for its boarders.
Buffalo Seminary says it has found a growing need to give these students more time to prepare for college support students who live on campus.
In a Buffalo Sem classroom, students sit in a circle, facing each other to learn and discuss with their teacher.
“One of the main values that Sem values is collaboration and communication in the classroom,” replied Anais Juilett, junior.
Buffalo Sem has a very diverse population, with local students, the school is also a boarding school for students who come from many parts of the world.
This new postgraduate program is known as PG for short. focuses on these students, offering them a chance to enroll for one more year in high school before heading off to college.
“We’ve had the opportunity and watched COVID and seen more students asking ‘can I come for senior year – can I come for a year’,” school principal Helen Marlett remarked. “There is no rush to go to college.”
Marlett tells me the college-prep program was “born” out of the pandemic that changed students’ learning habits and academic outcomes.
“Our PG program is – I think – combined the best components of a gap year with the ability to do more academic work when there is a gap,” Marlett explained.
“We’ve had so many parents concerned about the diminished motivation they once saw in their student as a result of COVID or there’s a bit of a lack of direction that these parents aren’t used to seeing “, described Amanda Melsby, Dean of Teaching & Learning.
Melsby says the postgraduate program will include English for speaking and writing, global citizens or a history course and work placements.
Students enrolled in this postgraduate program will work with an advisor throughout the academic year.
“When you ask about careers – theater – it’s alarm bells in my head,” replied Anaïs Juilett, junior.
Buffalo Junior Sem Anais Juilett is a traditional Buffalo student. But she tells me she agrees the pandemic has changed the way high school students think about their future.
“I heard it from a student – a friend of mine – she’s a senior at Buffalo Seminary. She’s taking a year off where she intended to focus on what’s right for her,” Juilett noted. “In terms of jobs and direct access to the world, I think that’s definitely something that’s opened up.”
Headteachers want their future boarders to consider the scheme, saying they are in no rush to go to university and should not fear the stigma of attending a Year 5.
“And your path doesn’t have to look exactly like everyone else’s,” Melsby said.