John Cooper Welcomes New Students, Faculty And Begins New Year with Record Enrollment

By: Deb Spiess
| Published 08/15/2019


THE WOODLANDS, TX -- “Welcome!” was the most frequent greeting heard or seen on The John Cooper School campus as 1,280 students started the 2019-20 school year on August 15. Representatives of the “S2S” (Student to Student) and “Cooper Connects” student leadership organizations held up signs, gave directions to classes and answered questions to extend a warm welcome to all. The Parents’ Forum organization also hosted a coffee to share the many ways to become involved in the life of the school.

The John Cooper School is an independent college preparatory school for students in Pre-k through Grade 12 that opened the year with record enrollment for the 21st consecutive year. The Class of 2020 consists of 105 seniors, and the high school began the year with the largest enrollment in the history of the school at a total of 463 students.

Now in the 31st year, Cooper has had steady and successful growth in terms of curriculum, enrollment and facilities. What has remained consistent through the years is being characterized as a welcoming community, according to Mike Maher who is beginning his 21st year as Cooper’s Head of School.

“I think the single most symbolic indicator of our progress is our incredible sense of community and school spirit shared by students, faculty and parents,” Maher said. “We polled the Class of 2019 and asked, ‘What’s the one word you would use to best describe Cooper?’ and the most expressed word by far was ‘Community.’ Our goal is that nobody feels like a new student or parent for more than a week or two.”

Cooper’s alumni base continues to grow and now numbers 1,896. This year, there are 15 legacy students enrolled, whose parents attended Cooper. Matthew Wilson, Class of 2005, who was named Head Varsity Basketball Coach is among the 29 new Cooper faculty and staff to begin this school year. Fellow alum, Cole Pate (’00) serves on The John Cooper School Board of Trustees.

“We are proud of what we’ve accomplished over our first 30 years,” Maher said. “We are excited to begin this year with families that represent a broad spectrum of diversity and international cultures, plus dedicated faculty and administrative staff members who support the school’s mission to enable students to become critical and creative thinkers, effective communicators, responsible citizens and leaders, and lifetime learners.”

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