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Secondary School Placement

The Fenn Upper School (grades eight and nine) is designed to build on skills nurtured in earlier grades and to prepare boys well for the demands of challenging secondary school curricula. Our rigorous academic program, emphasizing the development of reading, writing, and critical thinking skills, combined with our wide range of extra-curricular activities, stressing the importance of leadership in athletics, arts, and service, enables Fenn graduates to find success in high school, college, and life.
While many boys choose to attend public school after Fenn, the great majority of our students apply and matriculate to independent schools. Each year a high percentage of boys are accepted to their first choice schools; as admission to top-tier schools has become increasingly competitive, Fenn has maintained its commitment to providing an excellent foundation on which to build at the high school level.
The Secondary School Placement Office supports students and families through both the public and private school placement processes and, ultimately, seeks to match Fenn graduates with appropriate secondary schools in terms of academic potential, talents, skills, and interests.
Fenn alumni have an exemplary record of leadership at their next schools as student government officials, captains of athletic teams, recipients of visual and performing art awards, and organizers of community service initiatives. We take pride in the success of our graduates whose achievements are often noted by secondary schools, and we keep close ties with these young men through our active Alumni Association.
Schools enrolling Fenn Eighth and Ninth Graders 2010-2014
Acton-Boxborough Regional High School (12)
Belmont High School (1)
Belmont Hill School (10)
Bishop Guertin High School (1)
Boston College High School (1)
Boston University Academy (2)
Brimmer and May School (1)
Brooks School (5)
Buckingham Browne & Nichols School (1)
Cambridge School of Weston (1)
Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School (2)
City on a Hill Charter School (1)
Commonwealth School (2)
Community School (1)
Concord Academy (27)
Concord-Carlisle Regional High School (49)
Cushing Academy (1)
Deerfield Academy (6)
Governor's Academy (3)
Groton School (13)
Gyeonggi Suwon International School (1)
Holderness School (5)
Hotchkiss School (2)
Kent School (2)
Kimball Union Academy (2)
Lawrence Academy (25)
Lexington High School (1)
Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School (5)
Lowell High School (1)
Maynard High School (2)
Medford High School (1)
Middlesex School (31)
Milton Academy (5)
Nashoba Regional High School (3)
Noble & Greenough School (5)
North Shore Country Day School (1)
Northfield-Mt. Hermon School (1)
Phillips Academy, Andover (11)
Phillips Exeter Academy (2)
Pingree School (1)
Pomfret School (3)
Rivers School (7)
St. John's High School (1)
St. George’s School (5)
St. Mark’s School (15)
St. Paul’s School (4)
St. Sebastian’s School (3)
Suffield Academy (1)
Tabor Academy (1)
Tewksbury High School (1)
Trinity-Pawling School (1)
Westford Academy (1)
Williston Northampton School (1)
Winchester High School (1)
Woodside Priory School (1)
Xaverian Brothers High School (1)
Secondary School Forum 2014
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Resources and Information
Getting Started
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Visits, Tours, Interviews
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SSAT Registration and Information
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Financial Aid
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Public High School
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Graded English Papers
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Application Process
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March 10 and Beyond
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Q. When should my son apply to secondary school?
Most families wait until eighth or ninth grade to apply to secondary school. Historically, approximately half the members of our eighth grade class leave after eighth grade and half return to Fenn for their senior year. Students who decide to leave after eighth grade attend independent schools as well as their public high school.

Q. When and why should families contact the Placement Office?
As soon as you or your son has a question about the secondary school admissions process, please contact the Placement Office. In the spring, the Placement Office hosts several events for rising eighth and ninth grade families (a Placement Forum with local admissions officers and an Informational Coffee) to introduce parents and boys to the Secondary School Placement process. Any interested families are encouraged to attend these events.

Q. When should I schedule a visit/tour and interview at secondary schools?
We recommend that students wait until mid- to late October, November, and December to visit, tour, and interview at secondary schools. It is a good idea to start your school year strong in order to have more information to share with admissions officers. Most independent secondary schools offer Open House events in the fall for interested families. Families can find information regarding dates and times on the schools’ websites or by calling the admissions offices.

Q. When should my son take the SSAT?
Most independent schools require the SSAT from their applicants. A student must submit an SSAT score from the school year in which he applies out. We recommend that your son take the SSAT in October, November, or December. It is also important to release SSAT scores to our Placement Office in order for us to be able to support you during the application process. For more information, please refer to the SSAT section in the Placement Handbook.

Q. When should I contact teachers to write my son’s recommendations?
Once you inform the Placement Office that you are applying out, the Placement Office will coordinate the writing of academic recommendations with your son’s English, Mathematics, and Language teachers. You do not have to give English, Mathematics, and Language recommendation forms to individual teachers; they access secure recommendation forms online at Fenn.

If the school requires a Science recommendation, you should give that form, along with an addressed envelope, directly to your son’s Science teacher.

If the school requires a ‘Personal’ or ‘Special Interest’ recommendation, you should give that form, along with an addressed envelope, to the individual who will be writing that recommendation. If you have questions about who should write the personal or special interest recommendation, please feel free to contact your Placement advisor to discuss the matter.