In Upper School, we provide the learning and life experiences students need to become responsible and productive adults. Our collaborative environment emphasizes respect, trust, honesty, fairness, and kindness, helping students overcome daily obstacles in an environment of support and mutual understanding.
Small classes led by outstanding teachers have a powerful influence, shaping academic enthusiasm, developing intellect, broadening interests, and expanding friendships. Many classes are seminar-style roundtable discussions that encourage everyone to participate in the analysis and synthesis of ideas and information.
A significant percentage of our Upper School students choose from a wide variety of Advanced Placement courses. In addition to their academic pursuits, all students are encouraged to take an active role in school government, athletic competitions, artistic performance, and community service. Student life is enriched by many other opportunities, including our House Program. Both formal and informal leadership opportunities are woven into all aspects of daily school life.
Each freshman is assigned to an adviser and an advising group. Over the four years of Upper School, this group of ten to 12 students work together and share a wide range of experiences designed to help them in their academic and social growth. Advisers may conduct small group sessions, one-on-one talks, class meetings, or college guidance sessions. Our advising program has three goals: to provide each student with a faculty member who knows him/her and his/her family well, to provide personalized academic counseling, and to create a small community of grade-level students. Compass 9
This program provides a series of interdisciplinary links among the freshman World Civilizations, English, Biology, World Language, and Foundations of Art courses. Teachers plan lessons that present the opportunity for students to explore major themes and practice core skills. The freshman teaching team works closely with the freshman advisers and dean to train students in these academic skills and as well as the daily habits necessary for growth and success. House System
Upper School students and teachers are assigned to one of four Houses: Academy House, Arrow House, Crest House, and Ledger House. Each House includes 25% of each class based on advising groups. The Program builds strong relationships across grade levels through friendly and varied competitions and community service projects. The series of exciting and challenging activities culminates with the winning House claiming the House Cup in the spring. Leadership Development
Leadership development is a strong and dynamic aspect of the Upper School. Examples of leadership positions include sports captains, elected and unelected student government representatives, club leaders, and class representatives. Senior Speeches
Every senior delivers a five to seven-minute Senior Speech to the entire Upper School assembly. Coached by their advisors and other faculty members, our seniors invite a friend, relative, or teacher to introduce them to the audience before they deliver a speech on a topic of personal importance. An opportunity to fine-tune presentation skills and to build community among students and faculty by sharing a significant experience, these speeches have become a hallmark of the Upper School.