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Phys Ed & Health / Leadership


At SEM, each girl learns about the importance of health, wellness, and fitness, as well as the responsibility she has to herself and to others.

Our mission is to teach each student to recognize her individual needs and use this self-awareness to realize her full adult potential. She is encouraged to develop the ability to meet and deal with adversity, and the confidence to make wise choices.

All students are required to take Health/Leadership classes and they are encouraged to play on a team. Our school's small size necessitates and encourages team participation. Routinely, girls play sports or try a new sport for the first time at SEM. Seasons when a student doesn't play on a team, she is enrolled in U-Go-SEM, our pioneering, personalized fitness plan software. The Athletics Director creates fitness goals and plans for each student which include a required log of minutes per week. Students can fulfil their U-Go-SEM time in free periods, at lunch, before and after school or on weekends.

The athletics program emphasizes excellence, commitment, participation, and the cultivation of the whole person. A student athlete will grow as an individual while learning the values of teamwork, sportsmanship, responsibility, and dedication.

SEM fields competitive teams in sports including basketball, bowling, crew, cross country, field hockey, golf, fencing, lacrosse, sailing, soccer, squash, and tennis. We compete in the Monsignor Martin High School Athletic Association for varsity and junior varsity interscholastic sports. Our squash team competes in the Buffalo City High School Squash League and our lacrosse team competes in the Midwest Girls Lacrosse League, which includes teams from Michigan, Ohio, Western New York, and Southern Ontario. Our sailing team races from the Buffalo Yacht Club and our crew is housed at the Buffalo Scholastic Rowing Association (BSRA) boat house.

Physical Education Departmental Requirements:

Freshmen Fitness and 3 years (or 9 seasons) of Physical Education U-GO-SEM/or Athletics.

Athletic Director: Eva Cunningham

Health & Leadership: Kyle Hopkins


Health/Leadership Departmental Requirements:

Foundations: Health/Leadership for Freshmen

This full year course lays the foundation for the rest of the 4-year curriculum, by building a sense of community with one another and building each girl’s knowledge base and vocabulary at an introductory level. Topics include: team-building activities, time management and study skills, friendships and relationships with one another, healthy decision making, alcohol awareness, sex education (anatomy, reproductive systems, pregnancy, contraception, and STIs), media literacy, eating disorders, and public speaking.

1st Trimester: Girl World; Team Building
2d Trimester Brain Science & Alcohol Awareness
3d Trimester: Sex Ed.; Media Literacy

Explorations: Health/Leadership for Sophomores

In this full year course, students will explore more deeply topics introduced in the Foundations level. Topics include:

1st Trimester: Sexuality; Mental Health
2d Trimester: 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teenagers; Mindfulness
3d Trimester: Public Speaking Workshop; Drug Awareness


Applications: Health/Leadership for Juniors

This is the year in which students learn skills that enable them to apply their knowledge to real-life situations. Topics include:

1st Trimester: "Herstory" of Feminism; Sex-Toxic World; Self-Defense Clinic
2d Trimester: College Counseling Workshop; First Aid & Citizen CPR
3d Trimester: Nutrition (meal planning and cooking class); Car Talk car maintenance workshop

Survival 2.0: Health/Leadership for Seniors

It’s time to prepare for college and the world beyond SEM’s long wide hallway and this full year class is the culminating experience. Topics include:

1st Trimester: College Counseling Clinic; Stress Management
2d Trimester: Personal Finance
3d Trimester: How to Prepare for College: Cooking Beyond Ramen; Table Manners for Working Women; Sexual Safety on College Campuses; the Handi-Person Toolkit.