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Upper School Academics: Fifth Through Eighth Grades

Serving as role models for the student body, our Upper School (US) students reach new levels of leadership, responsibility, self-expression, and achievement.


  • Academic Excellence: Departmentalized courses including English, mathematics, science, history, French, physical education, art, and music call upon US students to think critically as they solve 21st century problems.
  • Advisory: Students meet in advisory groups each morning to touch base with an advisor and plan for the day. These morning meetings allow students to interact and socialize with students in other grades. Faculty advisors mentor students for two years, monitoring their advisees’ transitions to Upper School and maintaining consistent communication with families and faculty.
  • Declamation: Fifth through Eighth Graders engage in Declamation by challenging themselves to master and declaim celebrated works of poetry and prose, including speeches, sonnets, and excerpts from novels and plays. The School community attends monthly Declamations, and US students vie for the annual Declamation Award. A St. Peter’s School tradition, Declamation is one of the foremost School experiences recalled by our alumni.
  • Design Thinking: US students learn, experiment, and build in our innovation lab. Known as “the Underground,” our space is home to the School’s 3D printers, drafting and woodworking workshop, math classroom, and secondary computer lab.
  • Independent Study Program: The project-based learning Independent Study Program (ISP) engages Fifth through Eighth Graders as they research a subject, design a project, and develop a deeper understanding of a topic of interest. Students present their findings to the School community in the spring.
  • Interscholastic Sports: US students participate in St. Peter’s School’s interscholastic sports program. Student-athletes proudly don garnet and gray uniforms, forge fast friendships with teammates, and represent SPS as the School challenges neighboring independent school rivals in a variety of athletics.
  • Music and Performing Arts: US students enjoy a variety of musical and performing arts experiences: they learn to play guitar and handbells, sing in the chorus, and perform in school productions.
  • Recess: Every mid-morning, Fifth through Eighth Graders enjoy socializing, playing games, and being kids at recess.
  • Secondary School Placement: Our Secondary School Placement Director works closely with US students and their families as they evaluate, apply, and prepare for high school.
  • Social Emotional Learning: US students participate actively in our weekly Social Emotional Learning (SEL) program, practicing skills for social awareness, developing interpersonal intelligence, and learning responsible decision-making.
  • Student Clubs: Student Clubs allow US students to specialize and explore areas of interest with like-minded peers during the school day.
  • TALL: Fifth through Eighth Grade students may apply to join TALL (St. Peter’s School’s Teaching and Leadership League). Accepted students volunteer as after-school mentors and help younger students with homework.






For more information about the Upper School at SPS, please contact Matt Evans, Assistant Head of School and Director of Third – Eighth Grades: mevans@st-peters-school.org.