The Woods Academy

The Woods at a Glance

Welcome to The Woods Academy – An inclusive Catholic community preparing boys and girls to lead lives of significance. Our school while traditional and structured, is also innovative, rich, and child centered.


The school originally opened over a half century ago as Ursuline Academy. In 1975, a group of dedicated parents re-established it as Our Lady of the Woods Academy and subsequently The Woods Academy. In 1977, the school moved to its current location at the intersection of Burdette and Greentree Road in Bethesda. Today, The Woods is a renowned Montessori preschool and high school preparatory school educating boys and girls from ages three through eighth grade. 


General Information

Enrollment - 320
Student/ Faculty ratio - 7 to 1
Average Class Size - 15
  • Six-acre, park-like campus
  • Large playing fields for soccer, lacrosse, and baseball
  • Large state-of-the-art classrooms
  • Regulation size gymnasium
  • Fully outfitted stage
  • Chapel
Read more about our campus on the Facilities page.

School Mascot
Mighty Owl

Uniforms are required in grades one through eight. The Woods believes that neat, attractive, uniform attire supports a good learning environment and stimulates pride in school and self.

Our Program

Montessori Preschool – Ages 3 to 6
Lower School – Grades 1 to 4
Upper School – Grades 5 to 8
Hallmarks of our Program
  • World Language - Daily French or Spanish beginning in Full-Day Montessori, continuing in grades one through eight
  • The Arts - The Arts is an integral part of The Woods curriculum from Montessori through grade eight. Students participate in specialized courses in Music, Fine Art, Drama, Technology, and Library Theater.
  • Religion & Community ServiceThe religion program is designed to introduce students to the Catholic faith and traditions while inviting them to deepen their appreciation of other faiths and explore their relationship with God. Community service is an essential part of religious instruction at all grades.
  • Athletics - Competitive boys and girls sports - soccer, basketball, lacrosse, softball, and baseball - as well as tennis, golf, and swimming.
  • Technology - Our technology supports innovative learning - from Espon Brightlink interactive whiteboard projectors in all classrooms, to iPad learning stations in Montessori, one-to-one Chromebooks in grades one through five, and a one-to-one iPad program in grades six through eight.

School Day

Montessori Half-day – 8:30 - 11:30 AM
OWL Program – 8:30 AM - 2:45 PM (M - Th only)
Montessori Full-day – 8:30 AM - 2:45 PM
Lower School – 8:20 AM - 3:00 PM
Upper School – 8:20 AM - 3:15 PM
Extended Care
Morning – 7:15 - 8:00 AM
Afternoon – 11:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Learn more about after school activities on the Extended Day page.

High School Acceptances

The Woods prepares all students for the intellectual and social challenges at public, independent, and Catholic high schools. The Class of 2016 boasts an 100% acceptance rate to their first choice school and was awarded $270,000 in merit based scholarships. On average, over 97% of our graduates are accepted to their first choice school. Visit the Profile of a Graduate of The Woods Academy for more information about high school acceptances.

Accreditation & Memberships

The Woods Academy is among a select group of independent schools individually accredited by the Middle States Association of Schools and Colleges and the Association of Independent Maryland Schools. In addition, The Woods Academy is one of only seven schools in the state of Maryland that is accredited by the American Montessori Society. The school is also approved by the Maryland State Department of Education. A complete list can be found on the Accreditation & Memberships page.

Office of Admissions
Molly McNamara Hugo
Director of Admissions
I extend an invitation to you and your family to come and see us first hand and truly “feel” The Woods experience. I give PRIVATE TOURS daily. I look forward to getting to know you and answering your questions about our school, our community, and the admission process.