UPPER SCHOOL Tower Hill School

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UPPER SCHOOL Tower Hill School
Tower Hill School
UPPER SCHOOL Tower Hill School
UPPER SCHOOL Tower Hill School
Welcome to the Tower Hill Upper School
Welcome to the Upper School at Tower Hill! We believe in
our motto, Multa Bene Facta (Many Things Done Well), in
the classroom, on stage and on the field, track or court.
Through vibrant curricular and extracurricular opportunities,
we support and place equal importance upon the pursuit of
scholarship and the exploration of leadership, interests and
passions. The development of strong character is integral to
our mission and program. Our holistic approach is to offer
the best possible experience for learning, discovery, and
growth. This handbook provides a 360-degree view of that
experience together with additional guidelines, policies and
information on what it means to be a member of the Tower
Hill community.

Our expectations are simple: We ask that each member of
our community live by the core values of respect, honesty
and responsibility. We are committed to helping each
student develop his/her self-advocacy skills in a learning environment that is safe, open and
inclusive. Our “Expectations of a Hiller,” in conjunction with our Honor Code, sets the standard
that achievement by an individual or as a school, whether in academics, athletics or the arts, is
meaningless without integrity, and we expect all members of our community to abide by these

Each year, students are required to have a solid understanding of the school’s expectations as
they are outlined in this handbook. Each student signs a pledge affirming they have both read
and will commit to the Honor Code and the standards set forth in this handbook.

If you have any questions about any part of our program, please do not hesitate to contact me
or Mr. Eduardo Silva, Assistant Head of Upper School and Dean of Students. We are looking
forward to a great year!

All my best,

Megan Cover
Head of Upper School

Welcome to the Tower Hill Upper School        1    Weighting				18
Purpose of this Handbook			                   2    Grading				18
Non-Discrimination Policy			2                      Global Scholar Certificate Program    18
Expectations of a Hiller       		3                 Extra Help				19
Mission					3                                      Work Spaces				19
Be Proud					3                                     Office Hours				                      19
Be Present					3                                   Homework				19
Be Professional				3                               Tests and Test Calendar		             20
Be Proactive					3                                 Semester Final Assessments		          20
Responsible Behavior Expected of a Hiller     3    Incomplete Work			                    20
School Schedule				6                               Course Failures			                    20
School Closings and Delays			                 7    Academic Probation			21
Features of the Schedule			                   7    Blackouts				21
Morning Meeting				7                               Academic Technology 		21
Classes					7                                      Application of the Tower Hill
Class Meetings (Homeroom)			                  7     Technology Policy			                 23
Lunch						7                                       Tower Hill Accounts and Personal
Work Spaces					7                                    Devices				                         23
Athletics					7                                    On-Site Technology and Network
Attendance					10                                    Guidelines				                      23
Excused Absences				10                             General Responsibilities		            24
Unexcused Absences				10                           Inappropriate Personal Use		          24
Consequences for Unexcused Absences           10   Social Media Use			                   25
Extended Absences				11                            Responsibility to Others		            25
Medical Leave					11                               Violations of Policies and/or Laws    26
Concussion Policy				11                            General Responsibilities		            26
Lateness					11                                    Communications with School
What to Do When You’re Late to School		       11     Employees				                       26
Check-out Procedures				12                         Violations of this Policy			          26
End of the Day					                           12   Warranty Disclaimer			                27
Checking out During the School Day		          12   Distance Learning Policy		 27
Going Home Sick				                           12   Purpose				27
Leaving School Without Permission		           12   Expectations				27
Making The Grade - Academics and                   Absences				27
 Achievement				                              12   Live and Recorded Sessions		          28
General Information				14                          Internet Safety				28
Course Selection				14                             Equipment				28
Course Recommendations			                     14   Appropriate Interactions and
Enrollment Against Recommendations		          14     Communications			                   28
Honors and Advanced Courses			                14   Personal Information; Online Learning
Self-Advocacy and Student Responsibility      15     Management Systems and
Course Credits, Academic Loads, Requirements 15        COPPA Information			              29
Minimum Credit Units/Courses Required by Year 15   Dress Code				30
Graduation Requirements			15                       Dress Code Violations			              30
Winterim					16                                    Proper Dress Guidelines		             32
Tower Term					16                                  Disciplinary System			33
Upper School Student Voices Program		         17   Demerits				33
Drop/Add Procedure				17                           Honor at Tower Hill			                34
Report Cards					17                                Honor Statement			                    34
Grading Scale, Associated Grade Point              Honor Pledge				35
 Averages and Academic Distinction		          17   Honor Board				35
Letter Grade Equivalents and Grade Point           Honor Board Process			                36
 Averages for Standard Courses		              17   Sanctions for Violations of the
                                                     Honor Code				                      36
Releasing or Reporting Honor Violations 36    Medications				63
Disciplinary Board			                  37     Illness Overview			                     63
Disciplinary Board Process		           37     Notification				                        63
Sanctions for Disciplinary Violations  38     COVID-19 Guidance			                    63
Major Infractions			                   39    Appointments (Dismissal for doctor,
Reporting Disciplinary Sanctions       39        dentist, orthodontist appointments)  64
Conduct Guidelines and                        Student Support			                      64
  Expectations			 40                          Meeting with Teachers			                64
Purpose and Goal			                    40    Advisory				65
Cell Phone Policy			                   40     Student/Advisor Relationship		          65
Criminal Activities			42                     The Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) 66
Cutting Class				42                           Services for Students with Disabilities 66
Displays of Affection & Other Forms of       College Counseling 		68
  Inappropriate Student Interaction    42     Reporting to Colleges/Universities      68
Honesty and Dishonesty		               42    Tutoring				70
Investigations				42                          Upper School’s General Philosophy
Smoking/Vaping/Tobacco Products        43        on Outside Tutoring			               70
Substance Abuse			43                          Peer Tutors				70
Guidelines for Social Events		         44    Tutoring after Failure of Final Exam
Consequences				44                               or Course				                        70
Use of School Space During the               For Parents				71
  Academic Day			                      45     Parent-Teacher Student Conferences 71
Video Games				45                            Other					71
Student Safety 			45                          Inspection Policy			                    71
Child Abuse Reporting			               45     School Closure or Modifications Due
Student/Adult Interaction and                    to a Force Majeure Event		           72
  Communication			                     45     Residence				72
Harassment and Other Misconduct        46     Student Records and Information         72
Other Forms of Harassment		            48     Parent/Family Cooperation		             73
Weapons and Threats			                 51
Student Leadership and Involvement 52
Student Government Association         52
Student Senate				52
Position Descriptions			               52
Position Descriptions - Class
  Representatives			                   55
Elections				55
Boards					55
Board Structure			                     56
Board Chairs				56
Leadership Conduct			                  56
Removal From Office			                 56
Clubs					56
Community Engagement		                 57
Types of Service			                    58
Break a Leg - Theater Productions      60
Forum					60
Health					60
Wellness Support			                    60
Accidents				61
Health Information Sharing             61
Student Illness and Communicable
  Diseases				                         61
Physical Education Limitations		       62
Purpose of this Handbook
This Handbook was developed to answer many of the commonly asked questions that you and
your parents may have during the School year. Because the Handbook contains information
about student rights and responsibilities, parents and students are responsible for knowing its
contents. Please take the time to become familiar with the following information and keep this
Handbook available for your use. It can be a valuable reference during the School year and a
means to avoid confusion and misunderstandings when questions arise.

The School reserves the right to interpret the content of this Handbook, including the rules
and regulations governing the academic and non-academic conduct of students. This
Handbook is not a contract, nor is it intended to be so construed. Our School reserves the
right to modify and/or amend the content of this Handbook at any time during the year. If any
written modification or amendment is made to this Handbook, a copy of such modification or
amendment will be distributed to students and parents.

Students who reach 18 years of age while enrolled in the School are bound by all student
and parent obligations in this Handbook. Student’s continued enrollment after reaching 18
years of age evidences the student’s agreement with this requirement. In addition, even after
the student turns 18 the School will continue to share all health/medical, disciplinary, grades,
progress reports, and other information with the student’s parents/legal guardians throughout
student’s enrollment at the School. Should a student have a concern about particular
information being shared with his/her parents/legal guardians, the student should consult with
Head of Upper School or Dean of Students.

Non-Discrimination Policy
The School admits students regardless of race, color, creed, ethnic origin, national origin,
or disability, who possess the motivation, ability, and character which would enable them to
succeed in our School community to the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally
accorded or made available to students at the School and the School does not discriminate on
the basis of race, color, creed, ethnic origin, national origin, or disability in the administration of
its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and
other school-administered programs.

If a transgender or non-conforming gender student or his or her parent/guardian wish to
request accommodations at the School, please contact the Head of Upper School. The
Head of Upper School and/or the Dean of Students will work closely with the student and/or
the parent/guardian, if appropriate, to discuss individual needs and requested supports and
accommodations. The School will determine whether requested support and accommodations
will be implemented.

Expectations of a Hiller
I. Tower Hill School prepares students from diverse backgrounds for full and creative
engagement with a dynamic world. Each student is provided with an educational experience
that emphasizes the development of an inquisitive, discerning, and critical mind; the value of
being creative and aesthetically sensitive; the appreciation of physical wellbeing; the ability to
collaborate and to function as part of a team; and the growth of character.

II. Tower Hill inspires students to be citizens who are active, responsible, honest, collaborative,
empathetic, and respectful. It is our expectation that every Hiller will:

Be Proud
We care about our school, and treat each other with honor, civility and respect. We represent
Tower Hill wherever we go, considering intentions and impact. We share the responsibility of
caring for our buildings and grounds. We leave things better than we found them.

Be Present
We are present, engage with the community, demonstrate concern for others, and act
appropriately. We value each other more than our digital devices. This means making a
conscious choice to limit social media and video games in social settings, including lunch,
assemblies, class and all other appropriate venues.

Be Professional
We are committed to upholding community standards and values at the highest level. This
includes honoring the dress code, completing all school work with integrity and honesty, and
advocating for oneself and for others.

Be Proactive
We are proactive, considering both the near and distant future. This includes studying,
completing homework carefully, using open periods wisely, making healthy food choices,
recycling all recyclables, minimizing use of resources, and cleaning up after ourselves.

We pay attention to the future of the greater school community by engaging in community
service and also involving ourselves in clubs and co-curricular activities.

Responsible Behavior Expected of a Hiller
As stated, at the heart of Tower Hill School is a culture defined by active, responsible, honest,
collaborative, empathetic, and respectful behavior, as well as our commitment to the safety
and health of students. All members of the community have an obligation to know and uphold
the School’s values and strive to embody them in word and deed.

We therefore expect that all members of the community will:

 ● Respect other people and their privacy and property, both within and beyond the School.
 ● Treat all human beings with dignity, refraining from behavior that intimidates, insults,
   threatens, bullies, coerces, abuses, exploits, harasses, humiliates, or demeans, acting
   with tolerance, courtesy, and thoughtful regard.
 ● Have an open mind and heart to the views and experiences of others, creating space for
   all to belong and thrive.
 ● Support and promote a school climate that does not discriminate against any individual or
 ● Use words constructively, avoiding gossip and other inappropriate or unproductive
   sharing of information.
 ● Maintain high standards of honesty, avoiding deception, half-truths, and deliberately
   misleading words or behavior.
 ● Exemplify principles of responsibility and fairness in daily life.
 ● Observe safe behavior and report unsafe conditions or practices.
 ● Cultivate caring and compassion, seeking to serve others, both within and beyond the

Our School cultivates a school environment in which all members of the community feel
valued and safe. Part of living our values includes every member’s responsibility to support
a safe school environment by refraining from harmful and unsafe behavior and reporting such
behavior when observed. In addition, we prohibit all boundary crossing behavior between
adults and students (as outlined in our Student/Adult Interaction and Communication
Policy) and sexual misconduct (whether between students or adults and students). Adults
are expected to identify and report suspicions of harassment, abuse, and sexual or other
misconduct and will not engage in such behavior themselves. In addition, School employees
are mandated reporters of suspected abuse, neglect, or abandonment as specified by
Delaware law. The School has conducted and will continue to conduct training for adults and
students on these important issues and encourages all students and their parents to report
any concern about boundary crossing behavior, sexual misconduct, or any other situation that
impacts the safety, health, or security of any member of our community to their Division Head
or the Head of School.

All adults have an obligation to model through both language and behavior the values and
expectations we have as a school, being especially conscious of their actions at times and
places when student can observe them. Students must be mindful of the power they have in
various roles at school. They must use their roles constructively, always avoiding intimidation
and abuse of authority. Older and returning students must take seriously the power of their
example on younger and newer students, accepting the responsibility to model and transmit
our School values.

These community standards apply to our words and behavior not only in personal interactions,
but also in all forms of electronic media and communications.

All members of the community help others to develop a sense of belonging, encourage
empathy and compassion, and promote an environment that is safe, kind, and inclusive. As
members of this community, we acknowledge that our actions reflect not only on ourselves,
but also on the School as a whole and therefore strive to live in a way that is consistent with
our values.

School Schedule
School Closings and Delays
Occasionally, School closes or opening time is delayed due to emergency situations, such as
unsafe driving conditions or inclement weather. Students and families will be notified through
Tower Hill’s Alert Now system, which will contact you through your home phone, cell phone,
email and text. Any information about delays or closings will also be posted at www.towerhill.

Features of the Schedule
The Upper School uses a ten-day cycle, which includes a morning meeting, class time, work
spaces , lunch at 12:20 p.m. and office hours from 3:15-3:45 p.m. A weekly assembly period
is held every Wednesday from 10:45 to 11:30 a.m.

Morning Meeting
We begin school days in first period classes and for seniors in the theater at 8:30 a.m. sharp.
We have morning meeting where we make relevant announcements and allow time for Senior
Speeches. Classes begin 10 minutes later.

The Upper School uses a 10-day rotating schedule with a typical class length of 60 minutes.
There are five academic periods scheduled each day. Major academic classes meet six out of
the ten days in the schedule.

Class Meetings (Homeroom)
Class meetings occur on every day ten. Each class meets in its Homeroom to discuss
grade-specific information. The Class Deans and elected Student Government Officers run
Homeroom meetings.

All Upper School students are scheduled into the meal plan and are expected to attend lunch
from 12:20 to 1:10 p.m. Our lunch options are phenomenal!

Work Spaces
When you have a work space, you should report to your assigned classroom. You must ask
permission of the proctor if you can sign out to another space.

Athletics are a required element of the school day for most students. On a typical day, practice
occurs from 3:45 to 5:45 p.m. Depending on the sport, games occur a few times a week or
on the weekend. Go to www.HillersSports.com for team schedules and info, or to the Athletic
Handbook for more information on our Athletic requirement.

2020-21 Upper School On-Campus Schedule
Major courses, which will occur mainly in blocks A-F, will meet six times per cycle.

                           Wednesday Assembly Schedule
Period 1 - 8:45-9:35, Period 2 - 9:50-10:40, Assembly 10:45-11:30, Period 3 - 11:35-12:25, Lunch

2020-21 Upper School At-Home Schedule
 Each block has five 60-minute sync classes each cycle and one 60-minute work class each cycle.

                           Wednesday Assembly Schedule
Period 1 - 8:45-9:35, Period 2 - 9:50-10:40, Assembly 10:45-11:30, Period 3 - 11:35-12:25, Lunch

We all agree that one of the most important elements to succeeding in school is actually being
there. Regular attendance and arriving on time are essential. Attendance will be taken at the
beginning of each class period. Please adhere to following policies:

School starts promptly at 8:30 a.m. If you are going to be absent or late, a parent/guardian
must contact the Upper School Administrative Assistant by 9:45 a.m. If we don’t hear from you,
you will hear from us. This policy applies for any mandatory school event.

If you are absent on a given day, you should not be in the building or attending school events
later that day unless your absence has been excused for reasons unrelated to illness.

Excused Absences
Excused absences are those deemed by the school to be for legitimate reasons, such as
illness, court appearances, religious observances, or other unique circumstances. These
absences should be arranged in advance by contacting the Upper School Administrative
Assistant; depending on the reasons for the absence, it may or may not be considered
excused. Providing a note from a parent or guardian explaining the nature of the absence does
not automatically mean the absence will be excused.

In the case of an excused absence, your parents should notify the Upper School Administrative
Assistant via email and you are responsible for notifying your teachers in advance when
possible, and for following up with them upon your return to School. Students generally will
receive the same number of days to make up missed work as the number of days absent that
were excused (for example, if out for two days, two days to make up work).

Unexcused Absences
There is ample vacation time at Tower Hill, so you are expected to be in regular attendance
before and after both school holidays and long weekends. All requests to be excused at these
times must be submitted in writing to the Head of Upper School. However, except for unusual
circumstances, absences during these times will be considered unexcused.

Consequences for Unexcused Absences
If your absence is unexcused, you will receive a maximum of 50 percent of the credit earned
for any test, quiz, or graded assignment missed during that absence. Your teachers are not
obligated to help you make up any work missed during an unexcused absence, nor is extra
time granted to make up such work.

Extended Absences
All Tower Hill Students are required to attend School during the academic calendar year in
order to matriculate into the next grade level, thus fulfilling their residency requirement. If you
are sick or have an illness that lasts for more than 3 days, a note from your physician should be
given to the Upper School Administrative Assistant.

Students who miss more than 15 academic days (3 weeks) due to illness or unforeseen
circumstances will be asked to meet with the Class Dean, Dean of Students, and the Head of
Upper School to determine their eligibility to progress into the following year of study.

Medical Leave
A student in need of medical leave must be under a doctor’s care and supervision. The student
should present the Class Dean, Dean of Students, or Head of Upper School with a doctor’s
note stating the reason for the leave and the expected duration of the leave. The School, family,
school counselor, Class Dean, and Dean of Students will meet to determine a plan for Return to
Learn with the necessary supports and expectations. While on leave or upon return from leave,
students are required to make up all missed work.

Concussion Policy
For a student diagnosed with a concussion, the academic and extracurricular impact will be
varied and unique to the situation. In our recent experience, however, the typical physician-
recommended concussion protocol is very often one-size-fits-all and misaligned with the
realities of the environment of Tower Hill. Concussions are both a medical and educational
issue. Assessing and addressing problems with learning and school performance, as well as
athletic participation, do not involve any medical decisions, but rather educational ones as
well. It is important to note that medical recommendations, while not educationally binding,
will certainly be taken into consideration as the school determines the proper plan for each
student. Tower Hill will use an individualized approach to determine a student’s Return to Learn
and Return to Play. For additional information, please see the Concussion Protocol in the
Nurse’s Office and/or Athletic Trainer’s Office.

If you arrive after 8:30 a.m. on Monday through Friday, you will be considered late. Lateness
will be excused if you bring a note from a doctor for a pre-determined appointment, inclement
weather has prevented your timely arrival, or other unusual conditions prevail. However, if you
miss any portion of class due to an unexcused lateness, you may receive no credit for work

What to Do When You’re Late to School
When you arrive late, you should email the Upper School Administrative Assistant’s office
as soon as you get to school. You and your teacher will receive confirmation of that email.
Proceed to class as quickly as possible. If you think your unexcused lateness should be
excused, see the Class Dean, Dean of Students or Head of Upper School sometime during the

If you arrive late, you will be marked unexcused and must arrive by 9:45 a.m. If you arrive after
9:45, you may be sent home, in which case you will not be permitted to return or participate in
activities beyond the academic day. Bottom line: If you are sick, please stay home.

If you arrive after the beginning of first period, you must provide an email from a parent or from
a doctor to the Upper School Administrative Assistant, explaining the reason for the lateness.
The note will not necessarily excuse the lateness, but it will allow you to attend class. If you do
not have an excuse, you will need to see the Class Dean, Dean of Students or Head of Upper
School as soon as possible.

You can be late to school up to three times in a quarter without disciplinary consequences.
However, your fourth lateness and every class after that in a quarter will result in a demerit, and
your parents will be notified of the situation.

Check-out Procedures End of the Day
When you are at School, you are expected to remain in or immediately adjacent to the main
School buildings during the 8:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. school day unless you have permission to
leave early. You should not be wandering the campus outside or in areas of the building where
you do not belong. If you need to go to your car to retrieve something, you need permission
from the Upper School office. If you participate in a sport, you must remain until the end of
your athletic commitment.

Check- out During the School Day
If you need to leave School for an appointment or other obligation, you must send an email,
written by a parent or guardian, to the Upper School Office, and receive confirmation from
the Administrative Assistant. The note should contain specific information about the time and
nature of the appointment or obligation and should indicate whether or not the student will
return to finish the school day. The School asks that, whenever possible, appointments be
scheduled so as not to conflict with academic classes and athletic contests.

When you return on campus from having checked out of School, you must send an email to
the Upper School Office, and the Administrative Assistant will send you and your teacher a
readmission slip via email. If the Administrative Assistant is unavailable, contact the Dean of
Students and go directly to class.

Going Home Sick
If you are not feeling well in School, simply ask your teacher if you can see the nurse. You
should always see the nurse before making arrangements with a parent to go home sick. While
no one will force you to stay in School if you are not feeling well, you will not be excused from
School for illness without going through the office of the School nurse. If you are leaving, follow
the checkout procedures listed above.

Leaving School Without Permission
Our most important priority is your safety. Therefore, we must know your whereabouts at all
times. Leaving school without permission is considered a major offense and may result in
severe disciplinary action, including suspension.

Making The Grade - Academics and Achievement
General Information
Tower Hill’s academic program is one of the finest in the nation. The Tower Hill curriculum
provides graduates the ability to thrive in courses at the world’s most selective colleges and
universities. Students who show an exceptional interest and ability in one or more academic
disciplines are encouraged to take honors and advanced level classes, which allow deeper
exploration into the subject matter and enable our alumni to excel in similar coursework in
college and graduate or professional school. We balance our core curriculum with a rich extra-
curricular life in the arts, athletics, and student life. Beyond academics, our students are able
to operate in a global world, are good citizens, engage in the democratic process, have a deep
appreciation of the arts and literature, have the ability to evaluate quantitative and scientific
information and have the ability to remake their profession and career to meet the demands of

a rapidly changing world. We live by our motto Multa Bene Facta and believe a well-rounded
secondary school experience is a necessity to prepare students for the 21st century.

Course Selection
Each year, as you select your courses from the online Curriculum Downloads, you are not
alone! Your advisor, teachers, and the College Counseling Office are here to assist you in the
selection of your academic plan of study. While your advisor and others are ready to help in
making decisions concerning the number and difficulty of courses you might take, ultimately
you are responsible for your own program and performance.

Course Recommendations
Department recommendations for the following year are made in late January/early February
and shared with students. These recommendations are based on factors that include, but
are not limited to: classroom performance, ability to work independently, preparation for and
participation in class, and standardized test scores, where appropriate. A recommendation
means that a student may take that course, not that he/she must take it. After final
assessments, recommendations may be reviewed and amended. Students in ninth grade and
their families are notified of these recommendations in late-spring. Upperclassmen are aware
of their recommendations prior to course sign up in early March. Our goal is to make sure
you are in the appropriate course of study based on your abilities, interests, strengths, and

Enrollment Against Recommendations
To request enrollment in a course against recommendation, a student must contact the course
teacher and the Department Chair to schedule a conversation. After this meeting occurs,
if the student and family still wish to change his/her course of study, they must submit a
written request to the Department Chair and Head of Upper School, stating his/her reasons
for the request. In submitting the request, students and their families must indicate that they
understand that: sectioning and staffing decisions will be based on the number of students
recommended for the course; students may not be able to change courses; and teachers
are not required to provide unlimited extra help to students in courses elected against
recommendation. Enrollment is not automatic. Students who end the year on Academic
Probation may not request any course against recommendation. The Department Chair and
Head of Upper School will make the final decision.

Honors and Advanced Courses
Honors and advanced courses are accelerated courses for qualified students who have shown
exceptional ability and who work well independently. Honors and advanced designation
indicates one or more of the following about a course as compared to a standard course or
offerings at that grade-level: it moves more quickly, covers more topics or delves more deeply
into subject matter, and/or requires a greater level of inquiry. Honors and advanced courses
require students to produce more creative and extensive individual work. Placement in honors
and advanced courses is not appropriate for all students and a manageable course load is
important. Students are recommended for honors and advanced courses after meeting specific
academic prerequisites.

Self-Advocacy and Student Responsibility
Since an important part of the learning process occurs through interaction in classes and
student self-advocacy, it is important for you to be prepared to participate actively and
intelligently. Therefore, you are expected to do your work and prepare daily for each class.
Should you encounter any difficulty in your coursework, you should immediately seek help
from your instructor. It is important for you to do so as early as possible so that you do not fall
behind. Our marking system serves to inform you, your advisor, and your parents about your
progress and to give colleges some indication of your potential in various areas.

Course Credits, Academic Loads, Requirements
Full-year major courses = four credit units each
Semester major courses and certain full-year electives = two credit units each
Electives = one credit unit

Minimum Credit Units/Courses Required by Year
Grade 9 (22 units)
  ● Biology or Honors Biology
  ● English 9
  ● Math
  ● Language
  ● Modern World History
  ● Minimum of one credit unit from visual art and design, technology, theatre, music or
  ● Freshman Seminar

Grade 10 (21 units)
  ● Chemistry or Honors Chemistry
  ● English 10
  ● Health and Decision Education
  ● Language
  ● Math
  ● U.S. History or Advanced U.S History

Grade 11 (20 units)
  ● One major English course each semester
  ● Math
  ● At least two major courses each semester
  ● Four additional credit units

Grade 12 (18 units)
  ● One major English course each semester
  ● At least three other major courses each semester
  ● Additional courses needed to reach 18 units and complete the graduation requirements

Advanced Courses
  ● Advanced/honors course prerequisites:
  ● Permission is normally required.
  ● Permission depends on background, academic load, and extracurriculars.

Graduation Requirements
  ● English (16 units)
  ● English 9
  ● English 10
  ● Plus one major course each semester of the junior and senior years

History (12 units)
  ● Modern World History
  ● U.S. History or Advanced U.S. History
  ● Plus four additional credit units

Language (8 units above level one)
  ● Satisfied by completing either:
  ● The third level of one language or
  ● The second level of two different languages

Math (12 units above a first-year algebra course)

Science (12 units)
  ● Biology or Honors Biology
  ● Chemistry or Honors Chemistry
  ● Plus four additional credit units (Physics recommended)

Electives requirement (4 units minimum)
   ● From approved courses in: Visual Art and Design, Theater, Music and/or Yearbook

Experiential Learning
  ● Winterim at the end of first semester
  ● Tower Term at the end of second semester
  ● Community Engagement is expected of all students throughout Upper School

Winterim is a dedicated period of time between first and second semesters where each grade
level will focus thematically on a topic. Freshmen will continue with an extension of their
seminar on Self Care, sophomores will contribute in Sophomore Service, juniors will participate
in a College Counseling seminar and seniors will participate in a Life Skills course to help
prepare them for their next chapter.

Tower Term
Tower Term is a requirement for every Tower Hill student that must be completed for each year
he/she attends the Upper School. It is a limitless space where the Tower Hill community can
explore learning together in an interdisciplinary, experiential way. This time allows for creative
and dynamic programming that promotes deep engagement, critical thinking, and real life
application. This dedicated period allows students and faculty to explore ideas, take risks, and
run experiments. These courses will set the stage for collaborative, interdepartmental, student-
driven activities that provide diversified preparation for lifelong learning and personal growth.
Winter Tower Term will take place at the end of first semester and Spring Tower Term will take
place after Upper School exams.

Upper School Student Voices Program
In alignment with our commitment to social justice and equity, Tower Hill will offer intentional
programming for students to complete throughout their 4 years in Upper School. This program
is designed to give students historical, social and cultural perspectives in the following areas:

  ●   African American History
  ●   Systems of Oppression
  ●   Expression of Identity

Students will have the opportunity to learn, dialogue, question and listen. These courses will
increase student understanding, connection, healing and commitment to building an engaged
and diverse community. This is a graduation requirement for all students.

Drop/Add Procedure
During the first three weeks of each semester, students may make course changes to their
schedules. Schedule changes will not be made after the Drop/Add period unless they are
initiated by the School for unique reasons.

Pick up a Drop/Add Form from the Director of Scheduling
Return the form after appropriate signatures have been obtained
Official registration through the Director of Scheduling and a completed Drop/Add
Form is necessary to receive credit for a course
Junior and Senior Drop/Add must be approved by the Director of College Counseling

Report Cards
Consist of a numerical mark for each course
Students receive report cards at the end of each quarter
A narrative for each course is given on the first and third quarter report cards
A narrative from the student’s advisor is given on the second and fourth quarter report cards

Grading Scale, Associated Grade Point Averages and Academic
Letter Grade Equivalents and Grade Point Averages for Standard Courses
Tower Hill uses numerical grading on a 100-point scale for report cards and transcript marks.
Only major courses are calculated into the GPA. Major courses include two-credit semester
courses and four-credit year-long courses, including English, History, Language, Math, Science
and Advanced Studio Art.

Numeric Grades Letter Grades

100-97			A+                                   76-73			C
96-93			A                                     72-70			C-
92-90			A-                                    69-67			D+
89-87 		 B+                                   66-63			D
86-83			B                                     62-60			D-
82-80			B-                                    Below 59 F
79-77 		 C+

While our GPAs are based on a 100-point scale, honors and advanced course receive
additional weighting toward the GPA in the following manner:

  1. Grades earned in Honors Advanced courses receive additional weighting of 5 points, e.g.,
     grade of 84 would be calculated as an 89 (84 + 5) in the GPA.
  2. Advanced English Seminar and Advanced Studio Art courses do not receive additional

Grades are calculated in the following way:

First Semester Grade           Second Semester Grade          Final Grade

1st Quarter (40%)              3rd Quarter (40%)              1st Semester (50%)

2nd Quarter (40%)              4th Quarter (40%)              2nd Semester (50%)

First Semester Final           Second Semester Final
Assessment (20%)               Assessment (20%)

A GPA is calculated by multiplying each final mark by the number of credits for the course. The
GPA is the sum of these values divided by the total number of credits taken.

Academic Distinction - “Scholar” Recognition
Scholars are recognized for outstanding achievement at the end of each semester.

Scholar with Honors
Weighted GPA: 90- 94.9

Scholar with Distinction
Weighted GPA: 95 and above

Global Scholar Certificate Program
The Global Scholar Certificate Program is a way of systematically guiding and recognizing
students that go above and beyond in the realm of global studies. By offering our student’s
cross-cultural experiences and opportunities, they are given the necessary tools to engage in
mutually beneficial interactions with people from around the world.

The National Education Association defines global competency as “the acquisition of in-
depth knowledge and understanding of international issues, an appreciation of and ability to
learn and work with people from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds, proficiency in a
foreign language, and skills to function productively in an interdependent world community.”
As we move forward in our global efforts, the certificate program promotes global awareness,

language proficiency, and exposure to cultural diversity. Through carefully selected academic
courses, active club participation, service with global inquiry, travel, and a senior culmination
portfolio, students are encouraged to reach beyond their comfort zones and explore different

Upon completion of the requirements, students will be recognized as official Tower Hill School
Global Scholars, receive a certificate at Senior Awards night, and have the distinction marked on
their transcripts. A byproduct of this program will include the exploration of varied themes such
as business, economic and entrepreneurial literacy, environmental awareness and civic literacy.

For more information, please contact the Director of Global Initiatives, Eduardo Silva or visit the
Global Initiatives page on the school’s website.

Extra Help
Any student having difficulty may be assigned for extra help sessions. For 2020-2021, extra
help sessions will be held virtually with your specific teacher. Your teacher will communicate
how to attend these sessions.

Work Spaces
Students will be assigned to a work space during free periods that will be supervised by a

Office Hours
All faculty are available to meet with students virtually during office hours from 3:15 to 3:45 p.m.
each day.

Especially given the additional responsibilities of athletics and other extracurricular activities,
it is the philosophy of the Upper School that homework should not be so laborious or time
consuming that it creates an overwhelming or unhealthy burden on a student’s education.
Rather, it should be a productive tool in advancing learning and should contribute to the
academic rigor and fostering of time management skills that are necessary for college and

Assigning homework is in itself an inexact science. The same assignment that takes one
student 30 minutes might take another closer to an hour depending on learning style, level of
exactitude (perfectionism) or focus (distractions like cell phone or social media). That said, each
day students should expect approximately 40 minutes of homework per class day per subject in
regular courses, and up to an hour in accelerated or advanced courses.

While long-term assignments are common and should be factored into the daily load, students
should only be assigned homework on days when class meets. Homework should not be
assigned on days when a class drops from the schedule. We acknowledge that in the basic
cyclical nature of school, the homework load can vary – some nights are lighter, while other
nights (perhaps before tests or larger assignments are due) can be heavier. But if a student is
consistently spending beyond 3-3 1/2 hours per day (including homework completed in school),
the student should consult his/her advisor to investigate.

Tests and Test Calendar
  ●   Test content and frequency are determined by departments and individual teachers.
  ●   There may be no more than three total assessments per day, which includes two
      announced tests (or major papers or projects) and one announced quiz.
  ●   Teachers must place all tests, quizzes and major assignments on the test calendar
      through the Upper School Office.

Semester Final Assessments
  ●   Students will have semester final assessments in both semester- and year-long courses
      that cover material studied during the previous semester.
  ●   All examinations are up to two hours in length.
  ●   Notification is made in the event of a final assessment failure.
  ●   If a student fails a midterm or final assessment, he or she may be asked to do one of the
      • Re-examination after recommended tutoring or summer school allows students the
           possibility to pass the course. For more details, please see the section Tutoring.
      • Re-examination scores of 50 or higher are averaged with the original exam in
           calculating the final average.

Incomplete Work
  ●   All major assignments must be complete to receive credit for the course.
  ●   Unfinished or unsatisfactory work will be recorded as incomplete until the work is
      satisfactorily completed, at which time a mark and full credit will be given.
  ●   Incomplete work must be finished and turned in three weeks past the end of the quarter in
      which it was due unless an exception is made by the Head of Upper School.
  ●   Failure to complete incomplete work may result in student dismissal and non-
      matriculation to the next grade.

Course Failures
In June, the Upper School Class Deans and Dean of Students review the performance of any
student who has failed two or more courses. Recommendations sent to the Upper School Head
and the Head of School determine if the student will return to Tower Hill.

  ● Seniors must pass all courses to graduate.
  ● In the event of course failure or incomplete, the diploma will be withheld until the failure
     has been resolved.

  ● Underclassmen who fail a course follow the recommendation of the Department Chair.
  ● Actions may include repeating the course the following year or passing an exam prepared
     by the department.
  ● Re-examination is in conjunction with attending summer school, individual review or
     private tutoring to be completed before return in the fall.
  ● In all cases, the Department Chair will determine the process to resolve a failing mark.
  ● The Department Chair will work with the Head of Upper School to determine the
     procedure to be followed.

Academic Probation
  ●   A student may be placed on academic probation for poor academic performance or for
      unsatisfactory effort.
  ●   A student will remain on academic probation for one semester.
  ●   After that time, a review by the advisor, teachers, Class Dean, Dean of Students, the
      Head of Upper School, and/or Head of School will determine whether the student should
      continue at Tower Hill.
  ●   In some cases, a student on academic probation will be restricted from participating in
      non-academic activities to ensure dedication of time and energy to improving academic

No homework, papers, projects or assessments of any kind can be given the day following a
Blackouts occur at the discretion of the Dean of Students and Head of Upper School.
A forum that is scheduled in the evening automatically results in a Blackout for students.
Blackouts are indicated on the school calendar.

Academic Technology
The use of technology at Tower Hill is designed to support the educational program of our
students and enhance the learning experience. Students are expected to use technology

  1. Appropriately, to support their educational program or appropriate recreational use as
     determined by faculty and staff. Students should always be able to justify their use of
     technology by explaining how their actions are appropriate; and

  2. Responsibly, respecting the rights of other users, protecting the integrity of the resources,
     following all licensing agreements, and applying the principles of the Honor Code and
     proper behavior to all activities.

Access to Tower Hill’s technology resources is a privilege, not a right, and may be revoked or
limited for violations of this policy. It is the sole and exclusive right of the School to provide or
deny such access. Students who act in a manner that is inconsistent with Tower Hill’s standards
and expectations may be denied access and/or subject to discipline.

Any technology use that becomes problematic because it is inappropriate in its content,
disruptive to others, or negatively impacts a student’s academic performance will not be
permitted and may be subject to disciplinary action.

Application of the Tower Hill Technology Policy
This policy applies to students (1) in their use of the Tower Hill “Network,” Network-related
devices and activity; (2) in their use of their own personal technology devices at School or on
the Network, and (3) in their personal technology, social media, and communication systems

The Tower Hill Network is comprised of technology and communications systems, including but
not limited to TowerApps, TowerNet, and TowerMail accounts, computers, tablets, cell phones,
cameras, internet or wi-fi access, social media tools and applications, and other related systems
and applications. Therefore, this policy applies to all devices, technology, or communications
systems provided by Tower Hill (even if used for non-School purposes) as well as all devices,
technology, or communications systems which use or affect the School or the School’s Network
(whether or not they are School-owned or provided). For the avoidance of doubt, this policy
applies to the use of email, internet, texting, SnapChat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Kik, social
networks, blogs, games, personal web pages, GoogleDrive, and other web-based sites, social
media, and related applications.

Tower Hill Accounts and Personal Devices
New students will be issued logins and passwords that will allow them access to most Tower Hill
computers on campus. Additionally, new students will be given accounts on TowerNet (website)
and on TowerApps, which will provide them with a TowerMail account, shared documents
accessible both at School and at home, a shared calendar, and all course pages and homework

Personal devices are permitted on campus, but they are the sole responsibility of the owner.
Tower Hill does not provide support for personal hardware or software on devices not owned by
the School, nor is it responsible for the loss, theft, or damage to any such device.

If a student brings in their own device, they will be given access to the school’s wi-fi. At the
beginning of the school year, students must digitally register their devices with the School’s
technology office to be granted access to the wireless network.

Students are expected to engage in responsible use of personal technology and technological
devices, whether such use is for School-related purposes or using the School’s Network.

On-Site Technology and Network Guidelines
The Network is maintained for the use of the entire School community. Users enjoy certain
rights and privileges and are expected to comply with the School’s guidelines and standards
which include:

The School monitors the use of its Network, and students should have no expectation of privacy
in their use of technology on campus, in their School activities, when using School technology
resources, or when interacting with other members of the School community. Be aware that
server storage, TowerApps and TowerNet accounts, and internet use may be monitored at any
time. Students should have no expectation of privacy in files, disks, documents, etc., which have
been created in, entered in, stored in, downloaded from, or used on the Network. The School
may confiscate or examine the contents of any electronic device owned by the School, used on
School property, or connected to the Network if the School, in its discretion, believes that the
device is being used in violation of School policy or in a manner that may create injury or harm
to a member of the School community.

Even though the School attempts to limit internet access to only those sites that are reliable and
safe, it is impossible to assure that inappropriate information will be blocked, and Tower Hill’s
policies should not be construed as a guarantee of any such filtering. Ultimately, students must
be responsible for their own use, in accordance with the following guidelines:

  ●   Use personally-identifying information sent over the Network with extreme caution.
  ●   Do not use the Tower Hill computer resources for any monetary or financial transaction
      (shopping, auctions, purchases, banking, etc.).
  ●   Do not give out your password or let anyone else use your account.

Students must maintain the integrity and security of the School’s technology and Network. It is
a violation of School policy to access or try to access the School’s Network or an individual’s
email or other accounts, or to use another person’s password and username. Additional security
guidelines include but are not limited to:

  ●   Do not use technology belonging to others without first obtaining permission from the
      owner of the technology.
  ●   Use the School’s technology only when given permission or authorization to do so during
      the normal course of the School year.
  ●   Do not change the settings or add or install software files to School devices, without prior
      approval from the technical staff.
  ●   Do not bypass or attempt to bypass firewalls, filters or other protections.
  ●   Do not access, copy, delete or alter information or files that are not your own.
  ●   Do not attempt to acquire a password from another student or teacher.
  ●   If you access or become aware of inappropriate or objectionable material, immediately
      close the inappropriate site and alert the attending teacher.

General Responsibilities
Tower Hill is a community in which all members are expected to show mutual respect and
consideration for others. Since the Network reaches beyond the School, all members of the
community are expected, at all times, to act as ambassadors for the School.

You are expected to conduct yourself while using technology as you would in any in-person
interaction; such conduct falls under the same rules and standards of conduct as face-to-face
interactions. All conduct online that reflects poorly on you or on the School, regardless of when
or where it occurs, may be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. You
must not use the Network, other technology, or the internet in a way that compromises the
security of the School’s Network, disrupts the community, or interferes with academic pursuits,
as detailed below.

Inappropriate Personal Use
At all times you are expected to behave and act in a manner that is consistent with the School’s
values and standards. Below is a list of some but not all school rules governing appropriate
personal use of technology:

●   Use TowerMail for educational purposes and School coursework.
  ●   Use the Network only for authorized and appropriate educational or recreational uses.
  ●   Do not visit sites that are pornographic or otherwise inappropriate or sites that hinder
      overall Network performance (for example, videos or streaming music).
  ●   Do not participate in chat rooms or similar activities, unless the chat is part of a class.
  ●   Do not download audio or visual files (MP3s, music videos, sports clips, etc.), unless they
      are a part of an academic project.
  ●   Always use a headset when accessing technology that involves sound.
  ●   Do not use the Network or any related resources for private financial gain, or commercial,
      advertising or solicitation purposes.
  ●   Do not participate in or play games, unless as part of an academic project.
  ●   Do not create, send or forward documents or messages that are inappropriate, malicious,
      pornographic, harassing, wasteful or annoying (for example, chain letters).
  ●   Impersonation and anonymity in the use of the Network, including email, are
  ●   Do not use technology in any way that is harassing, offensive, intimidating or
      discriminatory. Cyberbullying, stalking and trolling are strictly forbidden and will not be

Social Media Use
Social media is any form of online publication or presence that allows interactive
communication, including social networks, blogs, photo-sharing platforms, websites, forums,
and Wikis. Examples include, but are not limited to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat,
YouTube, and GooglePlus.

It is critical for students to remember that, once something appears online, it never really goes
away, even if someone takes steps to erase or delete it. Copies of email messages, texts,
Instagrams, Snapchats, Facebook posts, pictures and other history of internet activity may be
retained and available to others without the creator’s knowledge.

Inappropriate language, statements or references to or about another student, or other School
community member (teachers, staff, parents, students, and alumni) that may be interpreted
as, demeaning, harassing, provocative, or threatening, violate this policy and the School’s
disciplinary policies. A posting that is mean, demeaning or insulting to the School or any
members of the School community will not be tolerated and may result in discipline including but
not limited removal from School.

Sometimes, it may be difficult to draw the line between a harmless joke and one that goes too
far and is hurtful. If you feel that you are being cyberbullied or hear about/observe someone else
being cyberbullied, report the behavior and get help. Bullying of any kind can be reported to a
teacher, Class Dean, or other adult employee at the school.

Responsibility to Others
Students may not take pictures, videos or sound recordings of teachers, staff, other students,
or anyone on campus without permission. If photographing a school activity for a student
publication, you must obtain prior authorization from your publication’s advisor. Regardless
of permission, the camera or recording features of any device may not be used in bathrooms

or locker rooms under any circumstances. Any use or posting online of personally identifying
information about any members of the School community (including photos, videos, names,
addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, etc.) without their permission is prohibited.

Violations of Policies and/or Laws
Use of the Network or Network-related resources for any illegal activity or in violation of Tower
Hill policies is prohibited. Such violations include, but are not limited to:

  ●   Accessing, downloading, forwarding or being in possession of offensive or sexually
      explicit (pornographic) material. This includes “sexting” or any transmission of nude or
      explicit images or videos of oneself or others.
  ●   Violation of copyright laws or intellectual property rights of others. Students are urged
      to consider the Honor Statement when accessing and citing material content and
      documents available on the internet.
  ●   Unauthorized entry into computers (“hacking”).
  ●   Deliberate vandalism, destruction of data or computer files, or use of malware.
  ●   Gambling.
  ●   Using Tower Hill’s name or logo in any way that could be interpreted to suggest the
      school’s endorsement of your online activity, without express permission to do so.

General Responsibilities
Students are expected to report broken or malfunctioning equipment or problems with the
Network. This includes any problem that jeopardizes Network security, problems with its
hardware and software, and potential viruses. Students are expected take precautions to
prevent the inadvertent spread of computer viruses. Deliberately spreading a virus will be
considered vandalism.

Students should work only in the account(s) assigned to them and can be held responsible for
the activity in those accounts.

Because the Network is a resource shared by the entire School, responsible use of bandwidth
is essential. It is expected that every user will be cognizant of and careful about the bandwidth
of the applications s/he uses and that s/he will take care not to use internet services in any way
that compromises other users’ access.

Communications with School Employees
Students must use School-approved methods (primarily, School email) when contacting
School employees. Contacts with School employees via text message or their personal cell
phones should be limited to special circumstances requiring such use (for example, when
communicating about a group meeting point while on a School trip).

Students should know that the School employees may not “friend” or participate in the social
networking sites of current students of the school (other than their own children) or former
students unless the former student is 18 years of age or older and at least 3 years have passed
since the conclusion of the former student’s attendance at the School.

Violations of this Policy
The School will respond to violations in accordance with the policies and procedures set forth
in the Honor at Tower Hill and Disciplinary System sections of this handbook. As such, any
violation of this policy is grounds for the School to:

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