About Washington Square Academy

Our Story

In 2017, a group of parents in Brookline, Massachusetts, decided to pool our time, resources, and respective areas of academic expertise to create an after-school program for our own children as well as for the children of friends.

Some of our children, already advanced learners and high academic achievers, were in need of challenges well beyond the abilities of the large day schools they attended to routinely provide.

Some of our other children had the capacity to learn at advanced levels but had become so frustrated by the lack of rigor in school that they had disengaged from the education process and consequently under-performed.

Although much of our program was initially conducted around kitchen tables in homes across Brookline, the students who participated thrived, progressing at rates well beyond even our own expectations. Recognizing the extent to which children benefit from rigorous instruction in small groups, we decided to turn our after-school program into a full day school.

We identified a building in the heart of Brookline and, in 2020, we opened the doors of the Washington Square Academy: a day school with an honors curriculum for advanced learners in Grades 4 – 8.

We designed both the structure and the content of our new day-school program around three core principles:

1. No matter how large we grow as a school, our class sizes will always be small.
2. Equally important to the need to provide high-end learners with a challenging education is the need to attend to their growth as well-rounded, healthy, happy human beings. Students at WSA thus receive formal instruction in the principles and practices of social-emotional health. Less formally, our dedicated teachers take every opportunity to incorporate joy, creativity, and empathy into lessons and activities.
3. We believe it is the responsibility of all humans to take care of each other–partly just because it’s the right thing to do, and partly because helping those in need brings as much benefit to the ones providing the help as it does to the ones receiving it. For this reason, then, we teach both the principles and the practices of philanthropic giving to all of our students.

In the years since we established our day-school program, we have remained true to our core principles. The effects on our students have been dramatic: students graduate from our eighth-grade program fully-prepared to excel in high school while at the same time mindful of ways to stay healthy and help others.

Please reach out if you would like your child to benefit from our program. Both you and your child will receive a warm welcome from all of us at Washington Square Academy!


Jenny Ho
Founder, CEO, & Head of School

Karen Baynes, Ed.D.
Director of Operations & Family-School Liaison

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