Summit School (Winston-Salem, North Carolina)

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Summit School
Summit school logo.jpg
2100 Reynolda Rd
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Forsyth, 27106
United States
Coordinates 36° 7′ 23.5″ N, 80° 17′ 12.18″ W
School type Private
Motto Inspiring Learning
Founded 1933
Founder Louise Futrell
Principal Julie Smith
Principal Carrie Malloy
Principal Gardner Barrier
Head of school Dr. Michael Ebeling
Faculty 166
Grades JK-9
Years offered 11
Age range 4-15
Number of students 620
Average class size 20
Student to teacher ratio 1:5
Classes offered English, Language Arts,
Language English
Hours in school day 7
Color(s)         Green and Orange
Mascot Screech (Eagle) Screech summit school.jpg
Nickname Screaming Eagles
Rival Forsyth Country Day School
Publication Summit Echoes
School fees $300-$1050[a]
Tuition $11,850-$20,850[a]
Revenue $15 million
1 Jr. Kindergarten-9th grade

Summit School is an independent, co-educational day school for pre-kindergarten through ninth grade, located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA. Summit is nationally recognized for the quality of its academic programs, its attention to individualized education, and the strength of its extracurricular activities. The school's stated mission is to "provide a challenging curriculum within a caring environment to help students develop their full potential." The school has a staff of 166 and an enrollment of 620.


Summit was founded in 1933 by Miss Louise Futrell. Miss Futrell (born 1893) had previous experience as both a teacher and administrator. A group of Winston-Salem parents, concerned about funding cuts to the public schools during the Great Depression, invited Miss Futrell to found a school. Mrs. Wingate Johnson donated the use of a vacant home at 405 Summit Street and on 26 September 1933, eighteen students and three teachers began the first day of school. Summit grew rapidly, spreading into nearby buildings during the late 1930s and early 1940s. The school was incorporated in 1938. In 1939, the school merged with Miss Lillian Dalton's Twin City Primary School a few doors away. In 1944, Mrs. Charles Babcock, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. R. J. Reynolds, offered the school a 4.5-acre (18,000 m2) plot of land on her Reynolda estate near Reynolda Village. In 1945, construction began on a new building, its design inspired by an exhibit mounted by The Museum of Modern Art and showing the potential of modern architecture in a school setting. The new campus opened in 1946.

In 1957, Douglas R. Lewis became headmaster of Summit, a capacity in which he served for thirty-three years. Mr. Lewis oversaw the expansion of the school including the 1962 construction of a junior high building and gymnasium, the 1977 construction of a science building and another gymnasium, the 1984 construction of a teaching/learning center, and the 1986 construction of a middle school building. By 1987, the school had three sections at every level from junior kindergarten through ninth grade.

Dr. Sandra Adams became head of school in 1990. She retired in 2008 following the celebrations of the school's 75th anniversary. During her tenure the school constructed a 3-story state-of-the art library. The school has recently added a new sports facility and an Arts and Technology Building. Dr. Michael Ebeling is the head of the school.

In early 2012 Summit announced it was merging with Triad Academy, a school for children with language based learning differences. Triad began its first year as a division of Summit with its students attending class on the Summit campus in the Fall of 2012, maintaining its own curriculum and sharing in Summit's broader curricular, extracurricular and enrichment options. [1] [2]

Physical plant[edit]

Summit is situated on a 28-acre (110,000 m2) campus within walking distance of Reynolda Village and Wake Forest University. The campus is comprised of 10 buildings, including 2 art studios, television/radio production studio, digital media/animation studio, design studio, robotics studio, digital music studio, 5 science labs, 2 libraries, 2 dining halls, wetlands instructional pond, 4 athletic fields, screening room, black box theatre, 350-seat theatre, pottery studio, photography studio, and Athletic Center which includes 3 basketball courts, a fitness facility, a dance/aerobics studio, a gymnastics studio, and a track.


In addition to a rigorous academic program at every level, Summit provides numerous enrichment opportunities for its students. Summit is known for its innovative approach to experiential education. Long-standing traditions such as Pioneer Day, Native American Day, and an annual Medieval Feast are just a few of the ways in which the school uses a multi-intelligence approach to learning. The school offers a varied program of extracurricular activities, including sports, drama, art, music, robotics, radio/television, computer animation, and pottery. The school offers after-school and morning care as well as an extensive summer program of academic, athletic, and extracurricular camps.

Summit's library holds 45,000 volumes. The school has a total of 676 computers for student use. Starting in grade 1, there are 2-5 computers in each classroom with access to desktop computers in specialty classrooms and labs. Additionally, there are 214 laptops, 107 Chromebooks, and 118 iPads for student use. Every classroom has high speed internet access and there are 420 computers available for student use.

In Junior Kindergarten - grade 5, all students take Spanish. In grades 6-9 students have the opportunity to take Spanish, French, Latin, or Mandarin Chinese. Each student participates in physical education, art, drama, pottery, music and guidance. Those in grades 6-9 also rotate through photography, robotics, digital media, digital music, STEAM and television/radio production.

The athletic program includes daily physical education class for grades 1-9 as well as 14 intramural and interscholastic team sports. Summit is a member of the Central Carolina Athletic Conference.

Summit School is accredited by the Southern Association of Independent Schools and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Distinguished alumni[edit]

  • Jennifer Ehle, BAFTA and Tony Award-winning actress
  • Stephen L. Neal, United States Congressman
  • Lyons Gray, CFO of the United States Environmental Protection Agency
  • Kate Miller, producer of the Academy Award-winning film The Two Soldiers
  • R. Philip Hanes, CEO of Hanes Corporation, philanthropist, author
  • Lisa Valk, first woman publisher of Time magazine
  • Barbara Babcock Milhouse, founder of Reynolda House Museum of American Art
  • Eric Wallace- Collegiate basketball player for Depaul University


  1. ^ Summit School Absorbing Triad Academy, Winston Salem Journal, January 26, 2012
  2. ^ Triad Academy at Summit School webpage
  • Summit School Archives; Onward and Upward: A History of Summit School, by Charlie Lovett.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°07′23″N 80°17′12″W / 36.1231931°N 80.2867173°W / 36.1231931; -80.2867173