1. You truly know your child as a learner.
During the elementary years, your child's academic strengths, interests, learning styles, and gifts become better defined. By the time your child is in Grade 8, the best match for high school is easier to determine in partnership with teachers and a placement director who have worked in collaboration with your family during formative years.
2. As an eighth grader, your child is involved in choosing the high school that is right for him or her.
During the early childhood years you, as parents, make the school decisions for your child. A family choice, involving your eighth grader, strengthens the commitment to achieving success in high school. We are proud of our secondary school placement record and are eager to work with your family to find the right fit.
3. Children often need a change.
K-12 can be a long time to be in one school, or one school system, and children are ready for a change of venue, new friends, and new challenges. According to statistics, few students begin in kindergarten and graduate as seniors from the same school. Because Ridgefield Academy ends in grade 8, our students leave together and move on to the secondary schools of their choice. They can be of support to one another during this process of change and growth.
4. Your child has early leadership and activity opportunities.
Older students at Ridgefield Academy serve on committees that give input on important school matters. They publish their own literary magazine, become part of interscholastic athletic teams beginning in sixth grade, conduct school-wide service activities, serve as buddies to our younger students, present their own eighth grade graduation speech to the entire school community, and assume the mantle of leadership by acting as role models for the entire student body.
5. The Upper School Head, you, your child, and the admissions directors at interested high schools will work in partnership to find a high school match that recognizes your child's unique gifts and achievements.
Beginning in seventh grade, parents and students meet with the Upper School Head and discuss the secondary school process and timeline. They are invited to attend a secondary school fair with representatives from over 80 secondary schools. Individualized meetings with families are part of a personalized placement process to support you and your child. Ridgefield Academy graduates are pursued by high schools because they are well-prepared, self-assured, self-confident, and well-rounded students, often becoming leaders in high school and beyond because of the foundations that were laid in their early years.
6. The elementary school environment allows students to experience age appropriate activities and events, without the influence and pressure of high school students.
Seventh and eighth graders at Ridgefield Academy take on the role of upperclassmen. At the same time, they can be themselves, often choosing to remain children a bit longer. Our facilities are age appropriate and for the use of all our students. Our experienced faculty is aware of developmental levels and trained for and committed to the elementary years. They nurture students throughout their childhood years, while preparing them for the rigors of secondary school.
7. The Ridgefield Academy connection continues throughout life.
Our graduates maintain the close friendships they acquire during their years at Ridgefield Academy. They appreciate the relationships they have built with their teachers, and they remain connected to Ridgefield Academy long after they graduate.