Head of Upper School
Students in Wheeler’s Upper School of Grades 9-12 embrace academic challenges, take risks, work hard and find joy while doing all of the above! Our students are high achievers who know how to collaborate. They are confident public speakers who are also good listeners. They know relationships matter while they are finding their own voice. Each is prepared to take the next steps to college and life.
It is our belief that giving students (that’s you!) the opportunities to take risks, embrace challenges, and find great joy in the learning process is as important as what each student learns. We hope that you, with the support of teachers who are experts in their fields of the arts, STEM and humanities, will not only graduate with a strong foundation of skills for college but that you will develop interests that will sustain you throughout your life. You can take a traditional path through a rigorous curriculum that is expansive and inspired thanks to the expert faculty of our division. You can also take a road less travelled through our new NuVuX seminars and follow a studio approach to learning with project teams and critiques that mirror the world of innovative design thinking.
The Wheeler Upper School is academically rigorous, artistically rich and athletically competitive. Curricular disciplines are not so much crossed as melded — 11th graders in a short story elective create a three-part fictional podcast in Wheeler’s Digital Production Studio, for example. An intentional curriculum focuses on diversity, equity and inclusion, health and wellness, metacognition and social-emotional learning. We build the ‘muscles’ of empathy and resilience. We share, listen and laugh together. We disagree with respect and we learn with purpose.
Upper School students participate in a variety of co-curricular experiences. Through Wheeler’s signature Aerie Approach, we connect students with passionate interests (from quantum physics to learning Turkish) with academic mentors from the surrounding colleges and the Providence community. Through a combination of classroom work and community service, our required Community Action Program focuses on educating our students to be thoughtful and contributing global citizens. Both in and out of the classroom our program is designed to provide venues for exploration and growth and to expose students to new ideas and ways of thinking. Opportunities exist to assume leadership roles as members of clubs, class officers, and participants on one of our many academic and athletic teams.
Contact Neeltje Henneman, Upper School Head, for information.