School Life

Health, Wellness & Support

Research proves that students learn best when their academic, emotional, physical, and social needs are met. Annie Wright is dedicated to educating the whole child and works to provide a healthy, safe and supportive environment so that our students can be engaged and challenged learners.
We provide opportunities to cultivate personal wellness and academic success through classroom instruction, student support services, and professional mental and physical health personnel. The key elements of student support services at Annie Wright Schools include:

List of 4 items.

  • Learning Support

    The Learning Support Department strives to meet the individual needs of students, to encourage each student to reach his or her personal best, and to cultivate age-appropriate self-management skills that lead to independent and community-minded thinking. In their efforts to reach these goals, the Learning Support Department collaborates and engages with teachers and parents to create an environment that best ensures that all students are being challenged and supported in their learning.
  • Counseling & Wellness Services

    The counseling program at Annie Wright is designed to provide a wide variety of opportunities and experiences that promote the social and emotional well-being of its students and families.

    In addition to providing a thoughtful and scaffolded health and wellness curriculum in Preschool through Grade 12, targeted counseling services, including in-house and referral services, are also provided by a Lower School Counselor (Preschool-Grade 5), a Middle School Counselor (Grades 6-8) and two Upper Schools Counselors (Grades 9-12, one day and one part-time Dorm counselor). The counselors engage with students in the classroom with age-appropriate activities, work with faculty to support student social and emotional learning, and are available for individual counseling, group counseling, peer conflict mediation, staff development, parent education, crisis intervention, curriculum development and community referral resources. 

    The Counseling Program strives to provide the AWS community with a strong network of information, intellectual challenge, and sensitivity leading toward growth and understanding.

    In addition to our strong in-house Counseling Program, Annie Wright also has one reserved 50-minute counseling appointment with Olympic Psychology Services every day of the school week for an AWS community member. If an AWS student needs immediate access to therapy, we can now ensure they have it. Between increased counselors on staff and ready access to outside counseling, we are working to intentionally and effectively support the mental health of the Annie Wright community.
  • Health & Wellness Curriculum

    Lower School
    In Preschool-Grade 5, we aim to align with the Units of Inquiry in the classroom, and support student learning of social emotional wellness alongside those units.  Our counselor focuses on identifying emotions, friendship skills, building empathy and self-awareness, mindfulness, conflict resolution, and emotion regulation. Additionally, as students move into the higher grades, there is further discussion around choices and the impact of these choices, as well as rights and responsibilities of being a member in a community. Throughout the grades, small group work supports healthy friendship skill building and overall skills practice.

    Middle School
    In Grades 6-8, health and wellness is a primary focus of the Physical Health and Education course curriculum. The social-emotional aspect allows students to grow and reflect through activities focused in five core competency areas, including self-awareness, self-regulation, social-awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making.

    Upper School
    In Grades 9-12, the health and wellness curriculum is designed to provide information needed to make important decisions about health, wellness, and individual lifestyle. Topics related to personal health and social/emotional health such as healthy relationships, digital literacy, mental health, community engagement and sexual health are discussed. Emphasis is placed on the student’s acquiring knowledge and assuming responsibility for their own mental and physical health with the goal to be able make positive health decisions for themselves in the future.

    In addition, for grades 6 - 12, the school is implementing the Character Strong SEL Curriculum which focuses on social emotional self-care. The curriculum provides a series of lessons that teachers and counselors can use in advisory and core programming to build on topics of empathy, kindness, and resilience.
  • Health Center

    The Health Center is open each weekday from 7:30 am to 3:45 pm, and provides day and residential students a comfortable and private environment to address first aid, accidents, and minor health problems. Our full-time School Nurse, a Board certified professional, oversees the schools’ First Aid emergency planning protocols as well as playing a pivotal role in reviewing all health protocols for the Schools.


Devon Morris

Lower School Counselor

Angie Osborne
Middle School Counselor

Sara Lowitz
Upper Schools Counselor

Matina Hawkins
Assistant Director of Residential Life & Dorm Counselor


Annie Wright Schools
827 North Tacoma Avenue
Tacoma, WA 98403


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Founded in Tacoma, Washington, in 1884, Annie Wright Schools serve students from age three through high school. Annie Wright Lower and Middle Schools offer coed programs in Preschool through Grade 8, while separate Upper Schools for girls and boys offer day and boarding options in Grades 9 through 12. Annie Wright is proud to be an International Baccalaureate World School.