One of the many wonderful attributes of a Far Hills student is that she is an explorer. In pursuit of academic and co-curricular interests and passions, she is not afraid to be curious and to try new things. I have the pleasure of seeing this spirit of adventure firsthand every fall when our students apply to and visit secondary schools. What is extraordinary about Far Hills students is that by the time they are in eighth grade, they realize that there isn’t just one or two great high school destinations. On the contrary, they understand that there are many wonderful schools and opportunities out there; therefore, when it comes time to apply, there is a feeling of mutual support and good will among our students. The goal for a Far Hills student is to find the “best fit” school—the school where he or she will thrive academically inside the classroom and outside the classroom in co-curricular clubs and organizations, all in preparation for college and to take on the world.
Collectively the Class of 2019 applied to 42 secondary schools. In addition to considering the local day school landscape, students traveled as far north as New Hampshire (St. Paul’s School) and as far south as Florida (IMG Academy) all with the aim of finding fit.
Fast forward to the spring, and the Class of 2019 can boast an acceptance rate of 80% (a school record) with 95% of the class heading off to their first choice secondary school.
So then what is it that drives these statistics?
Secondary schools have the utmost respect for our program and love having students from Far Hills who immerse themselves in their communities from day one. They think of our students as
- Academic Explorers
- Empathetic Leaders
- Responsible Citizens
- Resilient Innovators.
In short, our graduates are recognized as being prepared not just for high school, but to take on the world.
Most impressively and true to our spirit of adventure, our eighth-graders will collectively head off to 22 different secondary schools! On the day school side, seven students will matriculate into Delbarton, six to Gill St. Bernard’s, and another five to Morristown-Beard. Kent Place and Newark Academy will each have a pair of Falcons in their ninth grade class next fall. The Academy of St. Elizabeth’s, Immaculata, Oak Knoll, Oratory Prep, Rutgers Prep, West Morris Mendham High School, and West Morris Central High School can all boast a Far Hills graduate next year.
As we all know, Far Hills has boarding school in our institutional DNA and ten students have chosen that route: two students will be matriculating to Blair Academy, and the remaining eight are off to
- Avon Old Farms School
- Berkshire School
- Middlesex School
- Phillips Academy Andover
- Phillips Exeter Academy
- St. Andrew’s School
- St. Paul’s.
At this point of the year, eighth-graders can look back and feel good about their journey and can look forward to their remaining days and all the exciting Far Hills traditions (and signature projects!) that celebrate this remarkable point in their academic journey.
—Ed Thompson, Director of Enrollment and Placement