Academics

A Process of Intellectual Discovery

    • Molly T. MacKean, Ph.D.

      Molly T. MacKean, Ph.D.

      Academic Dean

Drew is a community of learners. We believe learning should be both challenging and fun. If you’re really going to learn something, simply memorizing and repeating information won’t cut it.

Drew’s curriculum is designed to help you develop an understanding of the world around you and your place in it. That is hard work! However, if what you are learning really matters, the hard work is worth it.

Drew’s teachers specialize in this kind of rich, meaningful learning. We want to teach you how to think on your own. We want you to speak with conviction about what you understand and believe. And we want you to listen and collaborate to evolve your thinking.

To do that, we provide classrooms and contexts where teachers present engaging materials and set you loose to tackle great projects. You have room to fail a bit, too: to get up from those tumbles, to learn from them, and to keep moving forward. That’s the kind of resilience that carries you far in life.

Our curriculum is full of amazing opportunities to learn in this way across all four years of high school. You will build a solid foundation in your first few years before exploring a rich array of academic electives that allow you to carve your own path. You will also participate in Drew’s deep tradition of experiential education, picking three Experiential Electives and one immersive DEALL activity each year.

Drew’s adults are committed to learning alongside you. We know that our course offerings must evolve to stay current and relevant in a rapidly changing world. That’s why we’re in the exciting process of refining our curriculum to ensure we continue to provide learning that matters. We look forward to sharing some changes to our course titles and descriptions.

What won’t change is our commitment to working with you as you find your voice, the confidence to express it, and the empathy to understand its impact. Please enjoy perusing all of our course options as you get to know Drew!

Bell Schedule

Drew’s unique schedule is carefully designed to maximize your learning while making plenty of space for community time, advisory, athletics, experiential pursuits, and more.

An overwhelming amount of research has emerged that decisively shows how more sleep in the morning benefits teenage health and performance in school. That’s why at Drew, the school day begins at 9:15 a.m. twice a week: so that you can approach the school day better rested.

At Drew, you’ll be enrolled in six classes each semester with one class period free as a prep period. Drew students like to use that prep period to stay on top of their schoolwork, socialize, or meet with teachers.
  • You attend each of your classes on Monday to check in and set the tone for the week.
  • Tuesday through Friday you have 80-minute block period classes, allowing you to delve more deeply into the subject matter.
  • Late start times on Tuesday and Thursday allow you to sleep in or use the morning to study.
  • During Community Time, you’ll attend all-school assemblies, advising, or other community building activities.
  • Experiential Electives: regularly scheduled explorations within Drew’s academic schedule. You will take three Experiential Electives each school year.
  • Social-Emotional Learning Block: Engage in a variety of activities based on your grade level. The curriculum includes service learning, health and wellness, college counseling seminars, and senior project preparation. Additionally, Thursday afternoons include Tutorial, a structured time to work independently, in small groups, or with a teacher directly.
  • You are allowed off campus during lunch to explore and take advantage of Drew’s Pacific Heights location.

Graduation Requirements

Department Requirement Courses & Notes
English 4 years English 1, English 2, English 3, and English 4
Social Studies 4 years World History 1, World History 2, U.S. History, U.S. Cultural History
Mathematics 3 years* Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2
Science 3 years* Biology, Chemistry, and Physics
World Languages 2 years** Two consecutive years of American Sign Language, French, Mandarin, or Spanish
Visual and Performing Arts 2 years Two of any full-year Visual or Performing Arts courses
Academic Electives 6 years Six additional courses from any of the above disciplines

* Although the graduation requirement is three years, students are strongly encouraged to take four years in order to deepen their academic experience and position themselves well for college.
**Although the graduation requirement is two consecutive years in one language, students are strongly encouraged to take at least three consecutive years, if not four, in order to deepen their academic experience and position themselves well for college.

Become part of the Drew Dynamic!

Drew knows and believes in teenagers. We engage each student in a process of intellectual discovery to develop an individual voice, the confidence to express it, and the empathy to understand its impact.
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