Sandy Spring Friends School



Ninth Grade Program

9th Grade Students

At Sandy Spring Friends School, we’re committed to creating spaces of belonging, and we know that the start of high school is a critically important time for each student to experience this deep sense of comfort and community. That’s why we offer a rich transitional experience for ninth-grade students, linking the Middle School years with the more intensive demands of the Upper School and grounding each student with a sense of self and a connection to their peers and larger community. 

Our ninth- grade program is sensitive to the particular intellectual, social, and emotional needs of 13 to 14-year-olds. We provide the supports and develop the skills to equip them to take full advantage of all the Upper School has to offer. In the process, we empower them  to Let Their Lives Speak as they enter late adolescence, and launch them, fully prepared and confident, to the next phase of their lives.

A Home Just for 9th Grade 

Most of the ninth-grade classrooms are located in Hartshorne (see school map). This central location allows the students—who are all new to the Upper School— to maintain closer contact with their teachers, peers, and books and supplies. A selection of ninth-grade classes are held in the Upper School building, providing opportunities for relationships to form with older Upper Schoolers.


The academic program allows for integration across the four basic subject areas of English, history, science, and mathematics.

Experiential Components

As an experience-based progressive school, our ninth grade program offers a number of experiential components

SSFS 9th Grade Camping Trip, 9th Grade Summer Bridge Program

Ninth Grade Camping Trip

Our 9th graders look forward each year to a time-honored Sandy Spring Friends School tradition - the overnight class camping trip.This trip lets our students step out of the conventional classroom setting and bond in smaller, more intimate groups. Brimming with the spirit of the Quaker testimonies of community, integrity and stewardship, this tradition is more than just a camping trip. Our young learners welcome the chance to forge new friendships, foster self-confidence, and cultivate a sense of belonging that lasts a lifetime.