A well-designed college preparatory curriculum reflects both the interests and the needs of the student. The Upper School provides the flexibility that allows the full development of individual interests without sacrificing what is essential in the liberal arts education of a young woman today.

Consistent with the Goals and Criteria of Sacred Heart Schools, the Upper School provides an academic program that focuses on the development of the whole person. Every student at the Academy receives intense training in the core disciplines of English, mathematics, social studies, world languages and science. Additionally, art, music, drama, forensics, theology, health and computer science are essential, integrated parts of this program. Through the physical education program, the Academy of the Sacred Heart helps each student develop a respect for physical fitness, a sense of fair play and an awareness of the enjoyment derived from athletic endeavors. Juniors and seniors may take more advanced courses such as Honors Calculus, Honors European History, Honors Molecular Biology, Honors Pre-calculus, Honors Physics, Honors U.S. History and a full range of Advanced Placement courses.

Plan of Studies

To learn more about our academic program and examine a complete listing of our courses with descriptions, view our Plan of Studies 2019-20 Booklet below. (Its requirements are applicable to the Class of 2023.) In addition, online courses via SophieConnect are available.

PDF of 2019-20 Plan of Studies

Past Plans of Studies

Block Program

A 4x4, college-style, block schedule format is used in the Upper School. Blocked segments of time have been proven to be beneficial for the following reasons:

  • to study subjects in greater depth with less fragmentation
  • to encourage innovative and diverse instructional methodologies
  • to have greater opportunities to integrate technology into the classroom
  • to focus students' attention on fewer subjects in a term
  • to reduce stress on both students and faculty
The daily schedule allows for four 80-minute blocks of time (adjusted for service days). Ninth and tenth graders take four of their core academic courses (math, science, English and Social Studies) in an odd/even schedule over the school year. All other courses and classes for eleventh and twelfth graders meet every day for 18 week terms, usually September to mid-January and mid-January to June.

Our graduates feel well prepared for college, citing that the extended time on learning and the intensity in the delivery of their courses enabled them to learn the material more deeply and to get a feel for semester-style college courses.

Graduation Requirements

In order to receive a diploma from the Academy of the Sacred Heart, a student must satisfactorily complete the following program of courses. It is expected that students be in attendance for four (4) years (considerations will be made for transfer students). One credit is granted for the successful completion of a full term of course work. The following represents the minimum graduation requirements:

English 4 Credits
Mathematics 4 Credits
World Languages 3 Credits
Social Studies 4 Credits (Includes Economics and Government)
Science 3.5 Credits
Theology 2.5 Credits, Required Annually
Fine and/or Performing Arts 2 Credits
Computer Studies 1 Credit
Physical Education / Health Required Annually
Community Service 2 Hours Each Week
Project Term Number of Days Varies Each Year (Typically Seven Days)

A curriculum recommended for admission to highly selective colleges should include four (4) credits of English, mathematics, science, world languages and social studies, and two (2) credits of fine and/or performing arts.

Students are strongly encouraged to take a minimum of five academic classes each academic year. Included in the 7.5 required units is the option to register for a 0.5 or a 1.0 supervised study hall.

US Curriculum