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Upper School

Our upper school is a vibrant, dynamic and exciting environment in which students grow to young adulthood. Upper school students experience an academically challenging curriculum in which they are encouraged and supported by some of the finest teachers in the region. Pembroke Hill faculty members know their students individually and care about their educational journeys.

While at Pembroke Hill, upper school students find an outstanding peer group that is highly motivated. It is “cool’ to enjoy learning and to work hard at PHS. Our students are articulate, confident and successful learners.

Pembroke Hill offers Advanced Placement courses in all disciplines, and approximately 90 percent of our graduates have taken at least one AP course. Eighty-five percent of our AP scores are 3 or higher on a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being the best). Most colleges will give students credit for scores of 3 or higher.

Our extensive college counseling begins at the start of a student’s junior year. Multiple programs and information meetings along with individual counseling sessions help students and parents through the college selection process. All of our graduates go on to four-year colleges and are accepted at their first or second choice college 95 percent of the time, historically.

Every upper school student takes the SAT and the ACT exams. Over the last five years, our students have earned an average SAT score of 642 math, 647 verbal/critical reading and 641 writing (two-year average - writing component in existence for two years).

This year, 13 percent of our students have earned National Merit honors. Thirteen seniors are National Merit Semifinalists; five are Commended Students. To be a semifinalist, a student must score in the top 1 percent of all students in the nation who took the PSAT exam. Pembroke Hill’s percent of semifinalists is the highest of all schools in the Kansas City metropolitan area and the second highest in all of Missouri and Kansas.

Pembroke Hill fosters a school culture in which students are encouraged to be leaders and to share their opinions. They are empowered to help make decisions concerning the upper school and its programs. Students exhibit an awareness of issues affecting our community, our nation and our world and have the confidence and skills to manage events that are designed to help resolve these issues. In recent years some of those events have included concerts, 5K runs and letter-writing programs.

Each year, the upper school sponsors January Interim during the week following winter break. It offers students unique courses that are designed to enrich students’ learning experiences by giving them opportunities to study in areas and in ways not available in the regular curriculum. Interim Week also promotes interdisciplinary learning, independent study and provides opportunities for social and community service as well as travel.

Being an upper school student at Pembroke Hill means being involved in the school’s life outside of the classroom. Because of the relatively small size of our upper school (approximately 400 students), our students are active participants. They are members of our 33 extracurricular clubs and organizations and they play on 22 sports teams. These experiences assist students in developing skills in leadership and teambuilding while allowing them to explore their special interests and talents. Participating in these activities also helps students become better acquainted with each other and with their teachers who are also their coaches, club sponsors and advisers.

Helping students understand the importance of giving back to the community is a priority at Pembroke Hill. Students are required to perform at least 60 hours of volunteer work during their four years of high school (40 of which must be completed outside of Pembroke Hill). Most of our students provide many more hours than the requirement. Our students assist all types of not-for-profit organizations. They can be found building homes for Habitat for Humanity in New Orleans during our January Interim, working with animals at area animal shelters, cleaning up parks and painting fire hydrants in older parts of the city, tutoring young children at area schools and daycare centers and sponsoring events that raise money for community service organizations.