Upper School

Upper School Welcome

Hackley Upper School students may best be described as "engaged" -- working closely with teachers and peers within a challenging and diverse curriculum that balances required courses with elective offerings. Our community’s larger values also contribute to the vibrant and enriching academic experience.
Hackley Upper School students exhibit an enthusiasm for learning, a curiosity about their school work and the wider world, and an eagerness to ask challenging questions of their teachers, their classmates and themselves. Our students learn that asking questions and seeking out assistance in order to gain a deeper understanding of their coursework is a sign of academic strength, not a sign of weakness.

The values of the broader Hackley community are also central to the academic life of the Upper School. We encourage a culture of respect and integrity. The words most frequently chosen by Upper School students when asked to describe Hackley are “Community,” “Friendly,” and “Home.” As one of our recent graduates remarked, “It’s cool to care at Hackley.”

Andy King
Upper School Director


List of 12 news stories.

  • Guest speaker Lili Platt shares her family’s story with the Upper School

    Jewish Culture Club Invites Speakers to Honor International Holocaust Remembrance Day

    On January 12, in anticipation of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27th which commemorates the day Auschwitz was liberated in 1945, Emma Joseph, Sophie Miller, Michael Lee, and Meredith Greenberg — the student leadership of Hackley’s Jewish Culture Club — invited three speakers from the American Jewish Committee (AJC) to talk to the Upper School over Zoom. 
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  • Screen-shot from the interview for this story.

    Spotlight on US Debaters Ben Kirsch ’21 and Zach Yusaf ‘22

    Since the fall of 2019, senior Ben Kirsch and junior Zach Yusaf have had an extraordinary run in Varsity Public Forum debate, culminating in a current NSDA ranking as the third top team in the country. Highlights included wins at the Byram Hills Invitational to kick off the ’19-’20 season, and three Gold Bids at Princeton, Blake, and UPenn during the ’19-’20 academic year, resulting in a spot in the prestigious Tournament of Champions which was conducted online in April, 2020.
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  • Hackley Computer Science Education Week

    Not even COVID-19 will prevent the Hackley Computer Science Department from once again celebrating Computer Science Education Week on the Hilltop. Annually scheduled during the first week of December, CS Ed Week is a program dedicated to inspiring K-12 students to become involved in the study of computer science. Here at Hackley, we highlight this week as a chance to celebrate just a little and reflect on computer science and its impact on our world.
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  • The students are focusing their service efforts on food insecurity on a hyperlocal level.

    Hackley’s Service Team Focuses on Community Food Insecurity

    This year Hackley’s Service team is concentrating their service efforts on addressing food insecurity on a hyperlocal level given the extraordinary challenges 2020 has presented to so many of our neighbors. 
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  • Metika Ngbokoli ’11 and the IRP Students

    Metika Ngbokoli ’11 virtually visits Hackley’s IRP Students

    Hackley’s Independent Research Program had the pleasure of hosting Metika Ngbokoli ’11 on Monday, December 7, where she discussed her incredibly inspiring path in being a first generation college student to now a 4th year PhD student in the Behavioral and Integrative Neuroscience Program at the UNC. 
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  • Kiri and Lily

    Parli Debate Co-Captain Lily Napach wins the Gavel!

    On Saturday, November 14th, three teams of Hackley Parliamentary debaters competed in the second regular season HSPDP (High School Public Debate Program) online tournament, including schools from New York, New Jersey, and California. 
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  • Hackley

    Hackley Upper School Public Forum Debate Team Wins!

    From November 6 to 8, 2020, 4 Hackley teams competed in the AppleValley Minneapple Debate Tournament against 170 of the top Public Forum Debate teams in the country.  Hackley Senior Ben Kirsch and Junior Zach Yusaf went 4-2 in Preliminary Rounds but then went on a run winning triples, doubles, octafinals, quarterfinals, semifinals, and then won the finals to become Tournament Champions.
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  • Hackley Debate Teams love October!

    October has been a busy month for Hackley debaters. The debate teams competed at Bronx Science, Byram Hills, and the Connecticut Debate Association Tournaments.
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  • Students Take the Lead in Election Day Discussions!

    With Election Day approaching, students in all three divisions have been asking questions and discussing the 2020 election cycle.
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  • Dr. Packer '11 from Foresite Labs during his virtual visit with the IRP students.

    Jonathan Packer ’11 virtually visits Hackley’s Independent Research Students

    The Independent Research Program kicked off our 2020-2021 guest lecture series with the valedictorian the Jonathan Packer ‘11, PhD.
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  • Tommy and Sofia.

    Upper School Debate Team Competes in the Yale Invitational

    On Saturday, October 3rd, 12 Hackley Upper School debaters competed in the Yale Invitational, one of the biggest debate tournaments of the season. While moving to an online format, the Yale tournament involves over 2500 students from around the country and almost 1000 virtual debate rooms.
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  • Claudia DeSantis, Classics Teacher

    News from the Classics Department

    (By Dr. Pierce, Classics Department Chair, MS DEI Coordinator) This article is long overdue, but fortunately we were able to celebrate our scholars at an online ceremony in the spring.  At that time, we also bid farewell to the wonderful Claudia DeSantis who retired after 5 years on the Hilltop.  Her 6th grade class spearheaded an initiative to make a movie of memories and fun in her honor, and we watched it all together during the party.

    She was so touched, and I’m sure she has watched the video over and over again.
    Read More
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