Many private schools offer a college prep curriculum, but what exactly does this mean and is it right for your child? College preparatory schools come in all forms, but they all generally adhere to the graduation requirements of the state and they have a focus on preparing students to excel at institutes of higher education. For instance, students at a college prep school typically have greater access to one-on-one guidance and college counseling, as well as access to advanced courses. Norm Coleman, an Orinda Academy founder, is our college guidance counselor. This spring he is working with juniors in a series of 1:1 meetings to hone their college lists and brag sheets.
A college prep curriculum sets the standards of graduation. Generally, students are expected to successfully complete four years of English, three of mathematics and social studies, and two years of science. Students must also complete one year of foreign language studies or visual arts, and three years of physical education. Of course, students can exceed these expectations and they may choose occasional elective courses. The content of these courses is structured in a way that builds a firm foundation of knowledge and critical thinking skills that will serve students well in the college classroom. With this academic foundation, students graduate well-equipped for any course of study they choose after high school.
College preparatory schools typically offer a broader selection of advanced courses compared to most public high schools. Students may choose from honors classes that challenge them to reach new heights. They may also choose to take Advanced Placement (AP) classes, which are college-level courses that culminate in a College Board AP Exam. With AP classes, students can earn college credit before they graduate from high school. Taking these advanced classes in high school is an effective way to impress college admissions officers.
Students at Orinda Academy can also supplement their schedule with classes taken through Edgenuity. Current students are taking Entrepreneurship and Coding.
Comprehensive college prep curricula are supported by substantial student support resources. College prep students are generally assigned their own school advisor with whom they check in regularly. They can take advantage of savvy college counseling, academic planning conferences, and tutoring.
If you’re looking for a college prep school in Orinda for your child, look no further than Orinda Academy. We are a private college prep school that focuses on accommodating all learning styles, and providing extensive student support and counseling services. Call our office at (925) 478-4504 to request more information.