The Building Brighter Futures Construction Project is Underway!

In 2010 Bellesini Academy completed a two-phase renovation of the former St. Francis Church building.  This project transformed the former church into a state-of-the-art facility designed to serve a maximum of 60 male students.  The renovation provided for replacement of all major infrastructure, the creation of four classrooms, a science lab, computer lab, cafeteria, kitchen, gymnasium and office space.

Now, in response to the doubling of our student body over the next four years, the Building Brighter Futures Construction Project will:

  • Remove the unused Rectory adjacent to the school building in order to maximize the instructional space available on the school’s property;
  • Create a dedicated “Girls School space,” including:
    • Four new classrooms that will be wired for future access to the Internet and library resources;
    • Girls’ community hallway connecting girls classrooms; and
    • Girls’ Cubbies Area for storing textbooks, supplies, and personal items.
  • STEAM Center (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) that will include:
    • New Science Lab
    • Technology Center that incorporates not just computers but also space for robotics and engineering
    • Art Studio that will be used during school day and also to enhance after-school programs
    • Movement Studio that will provide space for yoga, dance, and other after-school activities
  • Alumni lounge to be used as a welcoming home base for returning Bellesini alumni;
  • Two additional office spaces for development and alumni support staff;
  • Reception area that will serve as a more welcoming entryway;
  • New, large signage located at the high point of the building, viewable from across the city; and
  • New fencing around the playground area and parking lot.

20161212 Lawrence project opt1

Project Timetable

May 2015 – March 2016:  Secure lead gifts, trustees’ gifts

Summer 2015:  First class of girls admitted (selected from 122 applications) for the 2015-16 school year. Academic Classes single gender with some projects together.  Supplies purchased for girls’ school, including text books, after-school supplies, and sports equipment.  Professional development conducted for teachers to help them differentiate instruction for boys and girls.

November 2015:  Kick-off the 2015 Club for the Girls’ School

Spring 2016:  Development assistant hired to assist with expanded fundraising needs

Summer 2016:  Second class of girls admitted (selected from 110 applications).  Girls’ school enrollment climbs to 31 students in grades 6 & 7.  Girls’ summer program expands to include 7th girls with partnerships with Lawrence Boating and the YMCA.

August 2016:  Rectory adjacent to the school building removed in order to maximize the instructional space available on the school’s property.

September 2016:  Work on original school building completed.

December 2016:  Finalize building plans

January, 2017:  Drawings approved by city and fire department

January 2017: Bidding process for construction

March 2017:  80% of building fund pledged

March 2017:  Construction contract signed, excavation begins

September 2017:  Building completed in time for start of 2017-18 school year

Criteria for Success

The expanded building will enable Bellesini to better meet the needs of our students, their families, and the community of Lawrence. While doubling our student capacity and improving the educational opportunities for our students through the addition of the STEAM Center, the renovated building will also serve as a catalyst for change in the surrounding neighborhood by providing educational programs for adults in the community.  Our Facilities Committee will evaluate the success of the Phase II Capital Renovation Project based on the accomplishment of these objectives:

  1. Increase our maximum student capacity from 60 to 120.
  2. Provide the space and structure necessary for operating a “co-institutional” schools for boys and girls under the same roof.
  3. Increase program space for alumni support, parent classes, after-school programs, and evening study.
  4. Advance and improve the school’s instruction of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math.
  5. Improve student safety through the securing of our property and play area with new fencing.
  6. Enhance our visibility and presence in our community through the creation of a more prominent entry & signage.

Upon completion, the Facilities Committee’s evaluation of these objectives will be submitted to the full Board of Trustees.

Now accepting applications for fall 2017!

Admissions Graphic for Website

Bellesini Academy seeks to admit boys and girls who aspire to go on to a competitive private high school and then to college.  For this reason, potential students should enjoy school and learning, and should have motivation to succeed in a rigorous academic environment.  In addition, qualified applicants must possess honesty, integrity, and self-control. The admissions process is designed to identify students and families who will benefit from our specialized instruction and programs.  Applicants must be eligible for Free & Reduced Lunch and be residents of Lawrence.

Admissions applications are available for the 2017-18 school year for:

  • Boys entering grades 5, 6 & 7 in Fall 2017
  • Girls entering grades 6 & 7 in Fall 2017

Applications are available in English and Spanish below.  Please call Bellesini Academy to schedule a day to take the admissions test.

Admission Application Fall 2017 English

Admissions Application Fall 2017 Spanish

In addition to a completed application form, applicants must submit:

  • Student’s most recent report card;
  • 1040 tax return for each parent and step parent, whether or not he/she lives in the same household; and
  • Proof of Lawrence residency (utility bill).

Applications received after the May 12th deadline will be reviewed on a rolling basis through the end of June.

Blessed Stephen Bellesini, O.S.A. Academy, Inc. admits students of any race, color, gender, and national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded and made available to students at the school. Bellesini Academy does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, and national and ethnic origin in administration of the educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.

Merrimack Valley Magazine Highlights Bellesini Academy’s Girls School

brother and sister









Photo by Kevin Harkins

Read the whole Merrimack Valley Magazine Article here.

100% of Bellesini alumni have gone on to graduate from high school, compared to just 67% of their Lawrence peers.

girls class picture

Just 51% of low-income students attend college, but 88% of Bellesini students have gone on to college, and another 4% attend technical schools.


Bellesini students are in school for nearly twice as many hours as public schools students–more than 2,000 hours a year!

Jenna Vocab

100% of graduates have gone on to attend a private preparatory high school since 2006.

Class of 13 Grad

Students gain an average of eight grade levels during their four years at Bellesini.


100% of Bellesini alumni have gone on to graduate from high school.