Welcome to King School's Upper School, where your journey of possibility begins.
The start of high school marks a pivotal moment in students’ academic and future success. At King, we recognize the significance of these formative years and strive to create an environment that nurtures personal growth, academic excellence, and holistic development.
Our commitment to students extends beyond the classroom, emphasizing a team approach to ease the transition from middle school, a diverse array of offerings to nurture and develop passions, a comprehensive four-year college counseling program, and an unwavering focus on developing skills, academic prowess, and overall wellness.
At King, we believe in empowering students to thrive and succeed in the ever-evolving landscape of higher education and beyond.
Cultivate Inquiry and Exploration
King uses an inquiry-based approach to learning that leverages student curiosity. We encourage students to identify problems, ask complex questions, and seek solutions. In this process, students engage at the deepest level, draw from multiple disciplines, develop a range of skills, and establish a depth of knowledge. This process yields increased academic learning and student engagement.
With inquiry-based learning, our students apply 21st-century learning skills to their everyday classwork. They enhance their collaboration, communication, creativity, and digital literacy skills as they explore solutions to real-world problems.
Explore All of Your Passions
Our students bring a unique blend of interests and talents to the educational experience. No two journeys are the same. Our schedule allows the flexibility for students to pursue passions and explore new interests. King students have access to a wide range of offerings that allow them to customize their studies while deepening their identities as scholars.
There are endless possibilities to pursue passions and interests in the Upper School.
King offers a four-year college counseling program. Starting in Grade 9, students are paired with an experienced counselor who guides the college preparatory journey.
Graduate With a Certificate of Distinction
The Upper School offers Certificates of Distinction to students who elect to complete additional requirements in particular areas of study beyond the broader graduation requirements. In an analogy to undergraduate study, the minimum graduation requirements comprise a sort of “major” in the Liberal Arts and Sciences, but the requirements for each Certificate of Distinction comprise an additional, focused “minor.”
Certificates of Distinction are entirely elective. They are only appropriate for students who prefer digging deeply into a focused area of study rather than continuing to explore broadly across the curriculum.
The result is a wealth of knowledge, enhanced confidence, and refined skills, preparing students for the next stage of their academic journey and the broader world.
Distinctions are offered in Art and Design, Global Studies, Leadership, Performing Arts, STEM, and World Languages
At King, each student possesses a unique set of interests and questions about the world. For Wafa Nomani ’21, it was a desire to understand the medications her grandparents were taking. Bryce Heaton ’23 sought to deconstruct the essence of leadership. Luisa Simon ’23 was curious about the functionality of wind turbines, and Alexandra Oxenstierna ’23 wondered if art could serve as a tool to overcome obstacles.
Become Part of a Championship Team: Athletics at King
King School Upper School Athletics offers a diverse, competitive program designed as an essential component of the overall educational experience. We value excellence along with strong program cultures and believe in the importance of commitment, goal setting, hard work, positive effort, and attitude, and to providing our students with the chance to develop their capabilities to the fullest extent possible in an engaging and challenging atmosphere. The Upper School athletics program offers a full slate of options across all three seasons, including more than 35 varsity and junior varsity teams. Learn more about Athletics
Perform Center-Stage in one of our Theater, Musical, and Instrumental Performances.
The upper school curriculum allows for multiple paths of interest, from musical performance, including band, choir, strings, guitar, and piano, to musical productions, sound engineering, music theory, songwriting, theater, or technical performance. Students can also study independently and earn a distinction in one of the many options available. Further, students interested in studying performing arts after King have a support team to help them prepare for the unique college application process. Learn more about Performing Arts
Student Life is Essential Part of the Upper School Experience
Clubs and activities in the Upper School are seen as co-curricular, not extra-curricular activities. They are a major part of the student experience. Students use clubs to explore passions, dive deeper into particular subjects, or extend learning from classroom experiences. Each year, students are able to propose new clubs, so the options are endless. Clubs are offered in publications and multimedia, enrichment, and service. Some of the most popular clubs are Model UN, Yearbook, GAINS (Girls advancing in STEM), Debate Team, Math Team, Investment Club, and Drama Club. Explore more club opportunities
There's a Community Atmosphere in the Upper School
At King School, we enjoy a tight-knit community and benefit from a deep sense of belonging and connection. We are committed to our mission of delivering an unparalleled school experience to our students, guided by our virtues of Integrity, Kindness, Perseverance, and Respect. King students embrace learning in a diverse community where multiple backgrounds and perspectives are celebrated. We are proud to be Vikings, and we celebrate our school spirit throughout the year. There are also multiple initiatives like class trips and activities to help students form bonds with one another. The Upper School has regular assemblies and "King Talks," Career Day with Alumni, and many other all-school activities throughout the school year.
King has helped me pursue and explore new passions in numerous ways. Pursuing the global studies distinction, I did a research capstone project junior year that piqued my interest in the study of the world. With the competitive yet inclusive spirit of King athletics, I was able to compete in field hockey games and tournaments alongside close friends. King's wide variety of opportunities has allowed me to explore and find new interests in order to develop both academically and athletically.
Elizabeth ’23 of Greenwich, CT
Embark on Independent Study and Research Opportunities
The programs build on content acquired within King’s curriculum to investigate topics or undertake projects that advance deeper and/or further than King’s formal course offerings. Guided by a mentor(s) from the appropriate academic department(s) - and sometimes by outside experts - students are responsible for the work and research required to master a topic and/or design and implement a project. King offers two distinctive programs, Advanced Science Program for Independent Research and Engineering (ASPIRE) and the Tom Main Fellowship that focuses on liberal arts of major global interest. Students can also complete an indepdent study through a topic of their choosing.
Advanced Science Program for Independent Research and Engineering (ASPIRE)
ASPIRE is King School’s elite two-year science research program designed to offer hands-on, high-level experiences to King School’s most promising, top-achieving upper school students to better prepare them for a career in research prior to college.
Students in this program participate in on and off-campus research opportunities where they receive mentoring, training, and guidance while focusing on their research.
Upper school student and ASPIRE scientist Yuriy Sandmeier ’23 has created a combination therapy to treat tuberculosis (TB) infections, and, until this breakthrough, the disease was resistant to drug treatments. His accomplishment recently earned top marks at the Connecticut Science & Engineering Fair, and the story behind the research is as powerful as the breakthroughs he is generating.