Ren Upper School

The Renaissance Upper School program has an integrated approach. The Upper School Coordinator oversees student work and communications between home and school in conjunction with a Rolling Hills Prep faculty advisor and a Renaissance learning specialist. During their high school career, students take a combination of Renaissance and Rolling Hills Prep core courses, along with Renaissance support blocks. Renaissance students are encouraged to participate in athletics, clubs, and other co-curricular activities on campus, and most of them do. Students at both schools are required to fulfill service-learning and outdoor education requirements.

Renaissance exposes students to a rigorous, college-prep curriculum that prepares them for success beyond high school. Students receive strong support to help them reach their goals, whether it is a community college, a four-year university, or an alternate path. Students attend either Rolling Hills Prep partnered courses or Renaissance exclusive courses. Rolling Hills Prep partnered courses are not modified for the Renaissance students, but the students do receive accommodations to maximize their success in the classroom. Each student's course load or level of support may be individualized to fit the student's needs and abilities. All core courses meet the California State and University of California admissions (A-G) criteria, and the school is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Upper School Renaissance Exclusive Courses

English I

Renaissance English I serves as an introduction to literary genres and development of skills. Ninth-grade students develop their skills as critical readers and writers as they improve their vocabulary, practice and utilize grammatical lessons and stylistic guidelines, and develop strong oral skills during class discussions. Writing assignments, which stem from the literature studied, and social cognitive thinking, give students the opportunity to craft analytical essays, as well as to discover their own styles and approaches through personal responses and creative essays. Renaissance English I provides general study skills and habits conducive to academic success in high school and beyond.

World History I

Renaissance Modern World History examines modern world history from the Russian Revolution through World War II. Attention is paid to both Western and non-Western cultures, as well as the relationship between the two. Through this course, students will gain insight into past events and see how those events have led to current world situations. The crux of this course uses skill reinforced curriculum delivered through the course’s content, examining the concept of revolutionary thought and action in the context of war, culture, politics, economics, and belief systems. Renaissance Modern World History provides general study skills and habits conducive to academic success in high school and beyond.

Algebra 1A/B

Algebra I A/B is an independently paced, two-year Algebra I course. Students will come away from this course with a deep understanding of functions, equations, and polynomials ready for Geometry and Algebra II. We have the luxury of being able to use technology and problem-based learning to connect algebra to the real world through projects, online lessons, class discussions, and in-class work. This course is designed to provide a hybrid experience, including both face-to-face and online activities. Students have access to all of the course materials through the Haiku website and Khan Academy is used to help reinforce concepts.


Chemistry is the study of the matter and the changes that matter undergoes.  The course covers methods of measurement, atomic theory and structure, gas laws, periodic table arrangement and periodicity, solution chemistry, thermochemistry, bonding, types of reactions, acid base chemistry, organic and nuclear chemistry.  Laboratory work is a major part of the course.  The coursework relies heavily on quantitative data collection and calculations.