I am an individual. I am not defined by my class rank or my standardized test scores. My teachers listen to what I have to say. They challenge me in ways that I find compelling and relevant. I am an integral part of my school community. I am a Roycemore student.

If students are to achieve their full potential, they need and deserve an educational setting where each student is known personally, coursework is interesting and challenging, access to extracurricular activities is unrestricted, students establish positive relationships with peers and adults, character development is discussed openly and candidly, and accountability, self-awareness, and independence are nurtured in preparation for success in college and beyond.

Within the context of Roycemore School’s overall mission, the Upper School program is rooted in the following academic, personal, and social growth objectives:

Academic Growth

  • Helping students develop an awareness of how they best learn, what their abilities, strengths and challenges are, and encouraging students to use this awareness and knowledge for academic success 
  • Nourishing in our students an enthusiasm for learning, and encouraging students to use higher level thinking to solve a problem, even though doing so may mean refusing to settle for the easy answer
  • Developing in students the following abilities: to read, write, and think critically; to analyze diverse sources and types of information and to judge the validity of those sources 
  • Encouraging and instructing students to use creativity and flexibility to learn from mistakes and failures
  • Giving students the opportunity to collaborate with others
  • Instilling the belief that fine arts and cultural study is an integral part of a complete life
  • Encouraging students to integrate all their knowledge, whether gained in or out of a classroom

Personal Growth

  • Teaching and developing skills we believe are essential for personal success and happiness, such as: integrity, appreciation, problem solving, resilience, pride, follow-through, and responsibility
  • Developing strong, self-reliant individuals who express their beliefs with respect for themselves and others 
  • Encouraging each student to become a well-rounded, educated, productive citizen empowered to make meaningful contributions to society

Social Growth

  • Building a sense of community and school spirit
  • Encouraging every student’s involvement in extracurricular activities
  • Providing opportunities for students to become positive leaders who can learn to adapt their leadership style to the given circumstance 
  • Instilling in students the knowledge that we all have valuable contributions to make to the greater good; therefore, finding ways to collaborate with those who have differing perspectives is essential
  • Understanding that respect for oneself, as well as respect and empathy for others, is necessary to become positive members of society
  • Developing an awareness of their roles within a community and a sense of responsibility to both that community and the greater society

By the numbers

  • 93% of Roycemore Upper School students participated in athletics and other extra-curricular activities last year
  • 94% of our 2017 graduates are highly qualified for college writing according to the ACT
  • 43 Roycemore Upper School students (51% of the Upper School) completed a total of 89 AP courses in 2017-18. The average score was 3.33. In Illinois, average is 3.05. The national average is 2.87. 84% of those exam scores were in the honors range; the national average is typically around 55%.
  • Each year 10–15% of our Upper Schoolers participate in the Northwestern Option, with dual enrollment at Northwestern University
  • Historically, 100% of our students are accepted to a college or university of their choice:
  • 95% of the Class of 2018 received at least one merit-based scholarship
  • Students in the Class of 2018 earned over $4.4 million in merit-based scholarship
    • Average merit scholarship amount of $202,203 per student

Frequently asked questions about Upper School

So what is the Northwestern Option?

Roycemore School has a strong partnership with Northwestern University, including an arrangement whereby our Upper School students can attend classes there once they have exhausted our offerings in a certain subject. For example, if a student has taken AP Calculus at Roycemore their junior year, they may then attend the next level math course at NU their senior year. This is true of all subjects with the exception of science. There is more about the NU option here: College Preparation at Roycemore

What is this JST thing I keep hearing about?

January Short Term (JST), a Roycemore tradition since 1972, provides a wonderful opportunity for independent student exploration. With guidance from staff and project directors, students spend 3 weeks in January between the first and second semesters exploring areas of personal interest beyond our curriculum. Individual projects are limited only by a student's ingenuity, and requisites for group projects are set by a faculty sponsor. We encourage students to think ahead: What are your goals?  How will you structure your time? How will you articulate your dream? How will you make the most of this great opportunity? There is more about JST here: January Short Term at Roycemore

What role does a student's adviser play?

The student's adviser is an advocate for the student. They provide support not only for academics, but also for social/emotional growth. Advisers can be seen as mentors and they often develop strong relationships with their advisees.

What are Roycemore's requirements to graduate?

We are a college preparatory school. Our Upper School has a rigorous and comprehensive curriculum that meets the needs of a diverse population and is designed to prepare students for admission to the colleges of their choice. We expect our students to have the intellectual ability, the motivation, and the behavior necessary to complete successfully a college prep course of study, to develop their abilities and knowledge of subject matter, and to enroll in the most sophisticated courses for which they are prepared. You can view our specific graduation requirements here: Roycemore School Graduation Requirements

Do you have an honor code?

We do have a published honor code for our Upper School: "On my honor, I will not engage in academic dishonesty, whether it be plagiarizing, cheating, fabrication or falsification of materials/data and giving or receiving inappropriate assistance. I will not engage in the unethical use of technology."

The code is discussed in advisory by presenting hypothetical situations and asking students whether they violate the honor code, to help foster an understanding of the code and why it's important to have one. Students and parents sign the code, and students are expected to adhere to the code at all times. There is an honor committee that reviews any infractions and assigns consequences accordingly.