Upper School

Welcome to Upper School

In our all-girls environment, Upper School Hockaday students enjoy the opportunity to be leaders in all facets of the School. They are diligent, conscientious students who are curious learners, preparing for college and beyond. Each girl engages in a demanding curriculum, continues to grow her talents, gains confidence, and imagines the possibilities that await her after her time in Upper School.

At Hockaday, girls form lifelong friendships which will carry them through their lives. During their time in Upper School, our girls also cultivate meaningful, individualized relationships with teachers and advisors. Character education programs, student forums, and discussions around issues of cultural competency and social impact are abundant in Upper School. Retreats, Form Days, One Hockaday events, clubs, athletics, and arts performances provide class-building opportunities throughout the year.

Throughout the four years in Upper School, the focus centers on a challenging academic program that includes English, science, mathematics, history, fine arts, and language. Girls are able to take advantage of unique classes and opportunities including Small World Initiative in Biology, Model UN, debate tournaments at Harvard, and math competitions at MIT, among others. Commencing in her junior year, each girl will begin the college preparation process of identifying her best college options based on her academic priorities and talents. When graduation day arrives, each senior eagerly participates in the time-honored tradition of crossing Commencement Terrace with confidence, ready to start her life after Hockaday.

Learn More about Upper School

List of 6 frequently asked questions.

  • Assemblies

    Upper School Assemblies bring the Upper School community together for discussion, celebration, and community-building activities. Assemblies are held once per schedule rotation and events may include student performances, guest speakers, and spirit rallies.

    The student-led Convocations Board has an active role in planning many of the Upper School Assemblies. 

    With the help of the Convocations Board, the Upper School launched an assembly series entitled “Join the International Conversation." This series relies on faculty expertise and provides students with an in-depth look at national and international current events. The series is designed to prepare students to engage in discourse about current events in ways that are collaborative, collegial, and productive, regardless of one’s political, cultural, or religious beliefs or background.
  • Honor Code

    All members of the Hockaday community are assumed to be honorable. The purpose of the Honor Code is not to test honor, but to give each student a chance to enhance and demonstrate her own trustworthiness and to maintain character at Hockaday. Under the Code, students pledge not to disrupt the atmosphere of mutual trust and respect at Hockaday by taking unfair advantage of any other member of the Hockaday community. At the start of each year, all community members gather for an assembly where they recite and sign the Honor Code.
  • Dances and Mixers

    Hockaday invites Upper School students from St. Mark’s School of Texas and Cistercian Preparatory School to attend mixers on our campus. Likewise, Upper School Hockaday girls are invited to attend mixers hosted on their campuses. Hockaday’s Upper School Student Council plans and hosts an annual mixer for Upper School students in all three schools in September. Smaller mixers for individual Forms may be planned and held throughout the year.
    All Upper School students are invited to attend Winter Formal in February. Winter Formal is held at an off-campus venue and girls are invited to bring guests from other schools. Prom is held in May and is for Form IV students and their guests.  
  • Clubs

    The Upper School maintains an active club program, the goals of which are to provide leadership opportunities for students, to allow for student-initiated and student-directed activities, to foster a sense of belonging and unity, and to provide a team approach to learning. Existing clubs include but are not limited to ones that focus on the arts, diversity, politics, service, social justice, and technology.
  • Advisory

    The Hockaday Advisory Programs begin in the Fifth Grade and continue throughout the Upper School years. The fundamental goals of the Middle and Upper School Advisory Programs are to ensure that each student has an adult who is present and involved in her academic and extracurricular life. In Upper School, this adult sees the student daily and ensures she is supported as she navigates her Hockaday career. 

    The Advisory Programs provide students with a daily opportunity to unwind, connect with peers, and seek advice and guidance, when needed. Through these programs, each student on campus has an adult advocate upon whom she can rely for support and direction. 

    Through the Advisory Programs, Upper School students develop meaningful relationships with peers in their grade level. Form I students and new students are assigned to an Advisory at the start of Upper School.

    Deliberate development of the whole child is also encouraged through two unique programs embedded into Advisory: Whole Girl in the Upper School and Cornerstones Studies in the Middle School. The Whole Girl Program, managed by the Upper School Counselor and facilitated by Advisors, is designed to give students the tools they need as they search for connection and purpose in their lives and face emotional and relational challenges. Advisors rely upon the trust established within their Advisory to facilitate meaningful conversations around these themes at designated times during the year. This program succeeds the Cornerstones Studies program in Middle School.
  • Student Council

    Students have the opportunity to run for leadership positions that represent their class, including Student Council, Academic Council, Affinity Council, Athletic Board, Convocations Board, Fine Arts Board, Honor Council, Social Impact Board, Student Diversity Board, Student Relations Board, and Technology Board.
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