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Head of School

Head of School Message

I have often been asked what sets us apart from other private schools in the area. People ask: “Why Anthony?”

I love hearing this question because it gives me an opportunity to shine a spotlight on TAS and what a remarkable place it is! 

We are the oldest nonsectarian, independent school in the state. We are mission driven, and we live out our vision and core values every day: Learning, Community, Individuality, Character. Our curriculum is considered advanced, and I believe that is due - in large part - to our phenomenal educators and the high expectations we set for our students and ourselves. At a recent meeting, someone called us the best kept secret in Little Rock. I couldn’t agree more, and I hope we stay that way. We are a wonderfully close and accepting community. We teach to the whole child and have been called the "liberal arts college" of elementary and middle schools.  

Our enrichment program is robust and includes studio art, physical fitness and education, music, strings, STEAM, coding/computer science, library, and world cultures and languages. Our upper middle school has a variety of electives from which to choose: guitar, photography, musical theater, sculpture, finance, advanced life science, printmaking, and newspaper. We know each student. We know his or her strengths, weaknesses, interests, capabilities, learning styles, and motivators; therefore, it makes it easy for us to help them love learning and to understand how they learn best. 

We produce exceptional graduates – exceptional in that they are both excellent students and human beings. Moreover, area high schools recruit our eighth graders heavily. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing our graduate flourish. 

Shana Nolen
Head of School
The Anthony School

About Shana Nolen, TAS Head of School

I was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas. An only child (don’t ask me to share my food) of a teacher and an attorney, I attended Mt. St. Mary Academy before moving to Texas to earn my Bachelor’s degree from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. I studied broadcast journalism, grammar, and composition and enjoyed writing for the university newspaper and making appearances on the campus radio station. (I can hide my Southern accent when I want to!)  

Following graduation, I moved to Boston to attend Emerson College and earned my Masters degree in Mass Communication. I followed…and reported primarily on…sports and politics - clear winners in those arenas. I worked in radio and television reporting and producing until the late 90s, bowing out following the Jonesboro school shooting. I was not cut out for hard news and took my skills to various communications departments in corporate America. 

Immediately after my father’s death in 2005, I began to feel the pull to teach…to instruct…to make a difference. I was offered a teaching job at TAS in the spring of 2006 and have been here ever since. I spent my first few years in early childhood art and technology before moving upstairs to the “big kid” computer lab. In 2015, I was allowed to introduce the STEAM program to our lower school. I taught STEAM classes as well as technology classes until I moved into Administration in 2018. 

Shortly after being named Head of School, I began pursuing a Masters in Educational Leadership and will conclude those studies in October 2023. TAS is the most magical campus in all the land filled with unbelievable teachers and staff who love their students and love their craft. We work harmoniously together for the betterment of our students and enjoy almost every moment we get with them! I don’t ever want to be anywhere else but here. 

Shana's Favorites 

Favorite color: blue

Favorite food: chocolate

Favorite subject in school: history

Favorite school supply: mechanical pencil 5mm

Favorite packed school lunch: peanut butter and jelly sandwich, potato chips, banana, box of raisins

Favorite sports team: Boston Red Sox