Academics at Dublin

Academics at Dublin School are engaging, relevant, and rigorous. Academic work prepares students for college, and for the journey of building rich and positive lives. Our academic program grows from the legacy of Paul Lehmann, and his emphasis on hard work and high standards, and the values of progressive education in the midst of a small New England village, surrounded by the beauty of the forests, Mount Monadnock, and Dublin Lake. Education here is based on Dublin’s early belief in involving every student in taking responsibility and caring for the school, the town, and the larger community of all humans, and for the natural world.

Dublin’s commitment to incorporating many kinds of people and learners, to creating many kinds of learning experiences in many kinds of work, and to the growth of healthy adolescents, all derive from this legacy. Our academic program invites students to read more deeply, to write and speak with increasing effectiveness, to solve problems creatively and efficiently, to explore scientific fields, to learn languages, and to draw, to make music, and to be moved by works of beauty.

Dublin School teachers care about connecting with each student, helping them develop mastery of course material. Dublin School’s academic program builds knowledge and understandings about the world, and fosters students’ natural intellectual and emotional growth. Our courses utilize a variety of teaching methods, traditional and progressive. We believe in recognizing each student’s potential, and we combine flexiblibility in order to support and challenge every student with a high degree of structure and accountability.

Course Work

Dublin’s courses include essential academic fields, like Biology, Algebra, Spanish, English, and History. We offer a full range of AP courses as well including: AP English Language and Composition; AP English Literature & Composition; AP US History; AP US Government & Politics; AP Calculus; AP Chemistry; AP Physics B; AP Environmental Science; AP Computer Science; and AP Spanish Language and Culture.  

But we also offer a large array of more specialized electives, which are developed in response to students’ curiosity or teachers’ passions. Students can also initiate independent studies.  Our rigorous graduation requirements ensure that students leave Dublin with a strong basis of knowledge and skills, and a range of creative and expressive experiences. 

One of the newest additions to our curriculum is the opportunity for seniors to develop a Senior Project.

Senior Project offers students the opportunity to engage in year-long rigorous study centered around a question or topic that is of special interest to them. The course has both a scholarly and a creative, or applied, component and students are given college-level expectations of independence, time management, and advanced analytical and creative problem solving.

Every student writes a research paper exploring the field or fields at the intersection of their project, documents their process with regular unit plans and reflections, works both with their Senior Project teacher and on- or off-campus mentors, and (when applicable) applies for funding for special workshops, internships, lessons or materials necessary for the enhancement of their learning. Ultimately each student channels his/her knowledge, skills and passion into creating an original work that is shared with the community on Mayfair Weekend. In its inaugural year, the value of a capstone course like Senior Project shows itself not only in the end products the students create but in the journeys they have taken in the process.

+ Graduation Requirements

One credit equals a full year course.
All students must maintain a minimum course load of five courses per trimester. To receive a diploma, all seniors must earn a passing grade in each course in which they are enrolled. An Independent Study will be considered as a sixth course.
English: Four credits. All students must be enrolled in an English course in every trimester at Dublin School.
Mathematics: Seven credits in the two disciplines of mathematics and science. Mathematics must include Algebra II. We strongly urge that students take three years of high school-level mathematics.
Science: Three of the science credits must be in lab sciences, including Biology and Chemistry. As of 2014-15, most students who enter the 9th grade are required to take Introduction to STEM.
History: Six credits in the two disciplines of history and foreign language. The requirement in history is three credits, including U.S. History. All seniors are required to complete a minimum of one course in history during their senior year, unless they are already enrolled in a full-year course.
World Language: The foreign language requirement calls for the completion of two credits in the same language. * We strongly urge that students take three years of the same language at the high school-level.
Technology: The requirement is .3 credit in Introduction to Computer Applications or a satisfactory score on the Computer Competency Assessment test.
Arts: Two credits in studio art, music, dance or theater & film elective courses. Students are not required to take more than two trimester courses in arts per year of attendance at Dublin School. Electives: One credit in elective courses in English, mathematics, history, foreign languages, or the arts. Each elective is worth .3 credit.

Algebra I and/or a year of foreign language taken in middle school will be recognized if the student can successfully pass into and complete the next level of the course.

+ Graduation Requirements For The Honors Diploma

Dublin School offers an Honors diploma for students who successfully complete the challenge of a more rigorous program. Students seeking the Honors Diploma must earn a GPA of at least 3.5 during their junior and senior years, with no individual trimester grade lower than a “C” during the same two year period. All senior requirements for the regular diploma apply, and are augmented as follows:
Students who receive a Fundamental Rule violation for academic dishonesty during their Junior or Senior year are not eligible for the Honors Diploma.

English: Four credits.
Mathematics: Eight credits in the two disciplines of mathematics and science.
History: Seven credits in the two disciplines of history and foreign language. The requirement in history is three credits, including U.S. History.
World Language: The minimum world language requirement is three credits in the same language taken at the high school level, or two years each of two different world languages.
Technology: The requirement is .3 credit.
Arts: Two credits in studio art, music, dance or theater & film. Students are not required to take more than two trimester courses in arts per year of attendance at Dublin School.

Algebra I and/or a year of world language taken in 8th grade will be recognized and given credit if the student has earned a satisfactory grade, and can successfully pass into and complete the next level of the course. Dublin School may require a student to repeat a course in which s/he has not mastered the material.

+ Graduation Requirements for Students of English as a Second Language

International students’ English competency will be assessed according to the SLEP or the TOEFL tests by the ESL Coordinator, and students will be placed into the level of ESL instruction as indicated by their performance. Students who study ESL at Dublin School will take courses in the English department a year below their chronological grade. They will be placed in other courses commensurate with demonstrated ability. Hence, ESL students may graduate from Dublin School with English 11 and U.S. History in their senior year. They are expected to meet all requirements in other disciplines.