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From orientation to graduation, our faculty inspires each student to become a Navigator, Critical Thinker, Citizen, and Communicator who is Innovative, Self-Aware, Ethical, and Globally Minded.

As a result of our strategic vision work, Rocky Hill Country Day School developed the Student Competencies, eight related capabilities, built on the knowledge, skills, habits, and personal attributes we believe our students need to develop for their future. With the 21st century’s pace of change, the world our graduates inherit will be more volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous than ever before. The Student Competencies will prepare them to be adaptable, lifelong learners, who can thrive in unpredictable situations, as engaged and impactful citizens in their communities.

With an eye toward the future of work, we believe the most important role of education is to develop students who are nimble and adaptable, able to acquire new knowledge quickly in a rapidly changing world. To accomplish this, we moved to our model of Student Competencies, making them the focus of a Rocky Hill Country Day student’s experience. Our graduates will enter their adulthood with the intellect and compassion to make a difference in the world.

The 8 Student Competencies

“Coordinating the many aspects of my 8th grade exposition project on nuclear energy, from my research, to interviews, to the presentation, taught me to be a more resourceful and independent student.”

Lily '21

In my class “Know Thy Place: The Urban Scene,” I have improved my ability to analyze the facts and evidence that I collect through research and to form my own interpretation.”

Lignan ‘19


A Navigator learns with nimbleness, adaptability, perseverance, and resilience, with a curious and self-directed approach.

Critical Thinker

A Critical Thinker asks meaningful questions, gains knowledge, and challenges research, analysis, and interpretation to evaluate evidence, arguments, and beliefs.

“Every morning in advisory, we share stories together. This environment of respect and trust gives me better perspective of my classmates and helps us come together and be more comfortable in class.”

Dudley '24

By participating in the Harkness™ method, I now navigate conversations eloquently and passionately. I am able to express my opinions and thoughts, while still appreciating and encouraging contributions of others.”

Olivia '18


A Citizen seeks ways to model good citizenship through kindness and respect for others, and serves as a responsible, engaged member of the community.


A Communicator skillfully expresses ideas in many modalities for a variety of audiences and is a poised and resourceful communicator.

“Global visionaries and idea-makers give the school the edge needed to adjust curriculum, and create opportunities that translate into new collaborations for everyone involved.”

Susan Fonseca Lanham, Global Impact Advisor

“At Rocky Hill Country Day, I have learned who I am, what I can do, and how I learn best. I know when I get to High School, and even college, it’s going to be easier for me because of that.”

Derek '23


An Innovative student is a bold thinker, generating new and creative ideas, willing to take risks to solve complex problems, individually and as part of a group.


A Self-Aware student is a confident observer who understands their personal strengths and is attentive to their needs, empathetic to others, and honors their health and well-being.

“Community members and outside speakers offer our students and faculty an opportunity to reflect on what an authentically inclusive school environment resembles.”

Matthew Gnolfo, Coordinator of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

“The third grade’s UN Global Goals project has taught me that we need to have gender equality in the world to make sure we have an equal amount of male and female leaders so that all peoples’ voices are heard.”

Gabriel '27


An Ethical student is an honest member of the community who speaks with integrity and has a focus on social responsibility.


A Globally Minded student is an open-minded individual who values diversity and different perspectives with an understanding of global issues.