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Upper School (9-12)

Thinking Critically, Acting Thoughtfully

Students in the Upper School are expected to take an active part in their education, to think critically and to act thoughtfully, in and out of the classroom. They participate in classes that are dynamic, hands-on and often student-directed; they voice their opinions in assemblies, in school publications, and on school committees; they exchange ideas with adults and peers from a variety of backgrounds and professions, from the community and around the world.

They are actively involved in school life, serving as student council members, peer mentors, teaching assistants, community service organizers, tutors and guest speakers. Close relationships with their teachers, who act as advisors, mentors, and role models, inspire them to give voice to their passion—be that music, art, drama, athletics, academics or community service—and translate that passion into a full and fulfilling life.

Sequence of Courses

The standard course load consists of five solid academic or “core” courses per semester, varsity sports and/or PE, community service, and electives.

CourseMinimum Requirements
English4 Years
History4 Years
Science3 Years of Lab Science, including Biology and Chemistry
Language3 Years (demonstration of third-year proficiency)
Mathematics3 Years (including Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II)
Health1 Semester (Sophomore year)
Arts4 Semesters (at least 1 visual arts and 1 performing arts class)
Physical Education/AthleticsYearly Participation (Grades 9 & 10 – both semesters/2 seasons; Grades
11 & 12 – one semester/season)
Community Service4 Years (participation each semester)
Senior Internship/Senior SeminarsSpring of Senior Year

Electives vary from year to year, but have included: problem solving, philosophy, cultural studies, journalism, screenwriting, creative writing, social activism, psychology, computational science and modeling, robotics, digital imaging, web design, digital video, stained glass, life drawing, ceramics, photography, photo journalism, fine arts photography, yearbook, art history, chorus, world music and politics, jazz band, acting, advanced drama and stagecraft.

SFP SBA Non-Discrimination Compliance Policy (Upper School)