The English Department faculty initiates engaging, relevant, and challenging learning experiences to empower students to set, work towards, and reach their educational goals. Critical reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills are integrated into lessons. Teachers guide students in developing rich and diverse reading lives, encouraging them to grapple with complex texts to reach their own authentic interpretations; students are then challenged to substantiate their unique claims with evidence and reasoning. Teachers encourage collaboration during lesson activities to nurture academic and social development and to promote engagement.
Students write extensively; they build skills by approaching writing as a process, and by collaborating with peers and faculty to revise and edit their work. In addition to their core English course, all ninth grade students take a semester-long composition course; this course involves an intensive study of grammar and exposure to key modes of writing required throughout high school. All students have access to The Writing Center during the school day; here, students can meet with English teachers for additional support with high school writing experiences. Teachers differentiate instruction to meet the needs of individual students, providing appropriate levels of challenge and guidance. The two Advanced Placement courses are offered to 11th and 12th grade students.
Reading and writing experiences provide the basis for effectively communicating ideas, learning about the world, forging connections between individuals, building compassion, and understanding universal themes.