One of the most visible qualities of Horace Mann School is the exuberant energy of its students. This special energy can be found in our classrooms, where active learning and a vibrant exchange of ideas takes place. It overflows the classroom and animates the students in the cafeteria, the hallways, and the playing fields. Generated within the school, this energy makes a difference in their lives. The School encourages and directs this energy by providing a program rich with opportunities and challenges and a faculty that creates a stimulating classroom environment.
Success as a Horace Mann student involves making personal choices about one’s interests, strengths and weaknesses, and personal integrity. Our students develop a strong background in traditional liberal arts disciplines through required and elective courses, independent study opportunities, and clubs. They make choices every day about which activities to pursue, how to demonstrate their skill in courses in which they excel and how to improve in subjects that they find more challenging. They are expected to support our core values, which in the Upper Division, include the Honor Code. Teachers, advisors, deans, and administrators are available to provide guidance in making all of these important choices.
Approximately ninety teachers conduct the academic program for more than 700 Upper Division students. Nearly thirty have earned doctorates, and virtually all have advanced degrees. In seeking new teachers and retaining current faculty, Horace Mann emphasizes talent and achievement in the teacher’s curricular subject area, a proven ability to relate to high school students on an intellectual and human level, a track record of bringing the subject alive in the classroom while maintaining very high academic standards, and an ongoing love of learning and teaching.
For most of Horace Mann’s history, the high school program has been organized around subject-based departments. These include English, foreign language, history, mathematics, science, studio and performing arts, physical education, and computer science. In order to graduate from Horace Mann, each student must complete requirements in each of these departments. In addition to four years of English, Horace Mann’s graduation requirements include two years of history (Atlantic World and U.S. History), two years of science (Biology and Chemistry or Physics), mathematics through Algebra II and Trigonometry, foreign language through the third-year level, one computer elective, and one and a half credits in the arts. Students must also complete physical education and a guidance course in grade nine and grade eleven. In addition to these requirements, Horace Mann students are attracted by an enormous variety of elective, Advanced Placement, and independent study alternatives provided by each department.
At Horace Mann, education takes place not only in the traditional classroom setting but throughout the campus. Extracurricular activities are a vital part of the school program for all students, and most Upper Division students would agree that they learn as much outside of the classroom as they do inside. The scope of offerings is designed to encourage each student to find areas of interest. In each activity, students bear substantial responsibility for leadership, and many learn important leadership skills in their clubs and activities.
The Upper Division Tutoring Office supports Upper Division students in all areas of academic endeavor by offering additional instruction in the sciences and the humanities during normal school hours. The Tutoring Office is located on the first floor of Tillinghast in room 132T.