The philosophy of Sacred Heart education is framed by the assumption that education is transformational because students and educators are engaged in learning for the purpose of coming to self-understanding as those loved by God. Such self-understanding is not possible without intentional formation in critical thinking.
~ The Network of Sacred Heart Schools
Committed to educating to a deep respect for intellectual values, the Upper School at Stone Ridge seeks to inspire students to a lifelong love of learning. Our academic program across all divisions is founded upon our mission: to inspire young women to lead and serve, through lives of purpose that integrate faith, intellect, community, social action, and personal growth in an atmosphere of wise freedom.
Our Upper School program is designed specifically to serve the needs of young women as they stretch themselves towards a greater sense of understanding of self and the world, and of purpose. Each student is known, loved, and celebrated. We offer an educational program in the Upper School that is designed to nurture and inspire young women to develop their gifts, to build empathy and compassion for their world, and to gain confidence in the knowledge that their lives have meaning, promise, and purpose.
Research tells us that young women thrive on engagement and connection; when learning is directly tied to the understanding of self and to increased knowledge of the world, girls learn best. Unique to the Upper School at Stone Ridge, the Social Action Program allows girls to build on their classroom learning outside of the School’s walls; to deepen their faith formation and to engage in reciprocal acts of justice, service, and connection.
Similarly, our relationship with the Network of Sacred Heart Schools and the Network Exchange Program cultivates community, perspective, and empathy as Upper School girls travel throughout the United States and abroad and often host girls from other Network schools. Likewise, our Upper School students and faculty participate in summer service projects with other Network schools. These programs highlight the engaged connection that is a hallmark of our Upper School experience, each founded in our mission and in the understanding of how young women learn best -- building connections with a larger sense of both purpose, place, and people.
Our Upper School faculty believes that full engagement and thoughtful dialogue fosters lasting understanding and the transfer of knowledge. As such, our program uniquely serves young women with a curriculum founded on critical thinking and the cultivation of their God-given gifts as they navigate increasingly, and developmentally appropriate challenging landscapes of learning. Stone Ridge educates using Understanding by Design as its pedagogical approach for instruction and curriculum design. Each course is grounded in essential questions which allow the girls to engage in meaningful, open-ended questions designed to foster student interest, guide inquiry, stimulate discussion, and spark rethinking over time, pointing toward intra- and inter-disciplinary ideas. Students’ understanding of skills and knowledge is revealed through flexible performance. By anchoring our courses with Essential Questions, we guide students in uncovering and constructing meaning that they can flexibly transfer to new settings, issues, and problems. Learning, for our Upper School girls, becomes an exercise of purpose, of self-understanding, and of coming to know the world in which they will soon lead and serve as children of the Sacred Heart.
PDF version of the Course of Study 2019-2020
Students in the Upper School at Stone Ridge are encouraged to become independent learners, who are self-aware and able to self-advocate. Most academic support in Upper School is provided through classroom differentiation and direct extra help from faculty. Students make appointments to see their teachers during free periods, break, lunch, before school, and after school. When additional learning support is necessary, learning specialists will assist in determining a course of action.
Upper School Learning Specialists:
- Provide small group/individual meetings.
- Students who have documented learning differences and have demonstrated the need for additional learning support meet on a regular basis.
- Specific study skills strategies are available for all students on a drop-in basis.
- Communicate student learning differences and approved accommodations to teachers.
- Work with teachers to develop in-class support structures for students with learning differences.
- Make referrals for psychological-educational testing and are the school liaisons to educational psychologists.
- Document each student’s accommodations through a Student Success Plan.
- Assist families in applying for College Board/ACT testing accommodations.
Learning Specialist Team:
Learning Specialist (First and Fourth Academic)
Learning Specialist (Second and Third Academic)