Our School » Academics


At City on a Hill, all students graduate prepared for college. All courses follow a rigorous college prep curriculum aligned with state common core frameworks.

Advanced Placement (AP) Courses

  • City on a Hill offers AP Calculus, AP Environmental Science, AP Literature & Composition, and AP US Government & Politics. More than half of students will take at least one AP course before graduation.

Travel Opportunities

  • Each year 11th grade students spend a week in Washington DC visiting museums and national monuments, bringing to life what they have learned in their government and history classes. The trip also includes at least one college visit. In past years, classes have fundraised for an international trip to learn about and experience new cultures. Locations have included Senegal, Spain and Nicaragua.


  • All seniors complete 100 hours of internships as part of their City Project class. Students are placed at a variety of sites focused on service. Examples of past internship locations are Habitat for Humanity, the YMCA and Brigham & Women’s Hospital. In New Bedford, all juniors intern at local businesses once a week throughout the year.
  • Corporate Shadow Day: Open to all 3rd year students, Corporate Shadow day is an opportunity for students to spend a day shadowing and speaking with employees at a for-profit company and experience firsthand a career they are interested in. Industries range from finance, public relations and health care.

Test Prep

  • City on a Hill provides test prep for all students to prepare for standardized Massachusetts tests and college admission tests. City on a Hill students take the ACT in support of the college admission process. Additionally, as an ACT school, City on a Hill students take the ACT Aspire battery of practice tests every year and review all results with tutors, teachers and college counselors to track growth and work to improve performance.

Town Meeting

  • Town Meeting is a whole-school meeting held regularly. The meeting is used for a variety of purposes and is different each week. Each homeroom class leads one debate on a currently debated topic during the year. Debate topics have included the charter cap question, refugee rights and national elections.

Junior & Senior Seminars

  • All students enroll in junior and senior seminar courses taught by qualified college counselors in which they systematically go through the entire college search, application, financial aid and acclimation process. This method results in each student finding a college that is the right academic, social and financial fit for them.

Service Opportunities

  • Each year 9-11th grade students spend a day completing community service in their school’s surrounding neighborhoods. Locations have included food banks, soup kitchens, the Boys and Girls’ clubs and more.