Honors Program

Are you a curious learner with a hunger for diving deeply and researching topics that interest you? Are you a student who sets a high bar for your academic achievements? Are you able to work independently to achieve a long-term goal? Do you want and need to be provided with opportunities to challenge yourself academically? If you answered yes to any of these questions, Sparhawk's Honors Program is for you. 

Sparhawk High School is committed to providing all students with challenging and engaging academic experiences. Our courses are designed to be rigorous and promote high-level thinking skills and learning dispositions, and our overall program is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC)

Students who have demonstrated the willingness and drive to pursue more independent, in-depth learning experiences in and outside the classroom may apply for the Honors Program. The Honors Program is designed to provide Honors credit to students who are willing to pursue learning at a deeper and more thorough level.

Students accepted into the honors program have demonstrated:

  • The ability and willingness to set goals, focus and drive their own learning
  • High levels of effort, drive and academic achievement
  • Willingness to pursue challenges that push them outside their comfort zone
  • Self-motivation and self-discipline
  • Excellent written and/or spoken expression
  • The ability to work both independently and in a group
  • The ability to provide peers with meaningful feedback on their work
  • Promptness, attendance, focus and preparation for class
  • Academic leadership in the classroom

Once accepted into the honors program, students may choose which classes they intend to pursue at an honors-level and notify the faculty by filing their intentions with the faculty prior to the first meeting of the course.

In short, the Sparhawk Honors program is student driven--students apply for and pursue this level of challenge because they love to learn and want their high school transcript to reveal their academic drive, persistence and leadership.

Honors-level grades are weighted at 1.25% non-honors level grades (4.0 = 4.25 at honors level). To earn honors-level credit, students are required to demonstrate leadership in the classroom, do independent work and attend honors seminars during study halls.

During the first two weeks of the course, honors students arrange to meet with the faculty to propose how they will meet the honors-level expectations and to propose a question related to the course topic that they wish to research and answer in their final research synthesis product. 

Over the semester, honors students

  • Work with faculty to set personal academic goals that push themselves from their comfort to their “challenge zone.”
  • Demonstrate academic leadership in their preparation, engagement and participation in the classroom.
  • Meet a higher-level of expectation for the quality of their work (grammar, mechanics, analysis, etc.). 
  • Propose, work independently on and develop a final, polished synthesis project that demonstrates their understanding at a high level (to be completed before the date grades close for the semester). 
  • Attend honors seminar classes with other honors students. During these seminars, they will work on various things such as: workshopping and practicing their final projects, practice higher level communication skills, engage in discussions and debates.