Welcome to Shore

Common Questions

We have gathered responses to questions commonly asked by families considering Shore Country Day School. To learn more, please click on the questions that interest you or reach out to us directly.

Shore-Specific Questions

List of 14 frequently asked questions.

  • Where do Shore graduates go after Shore?

    Supported by the Office of Secondary School Counseling, Shore graduates successfully matriculate at all kinds of high schools: day, boarding, public, parochial, and independent. A majority of Shore students, after enjoying the classrooms, programs, and community of Shore, opt to remain in independent school settings. Those entering public school typically transfer into top academic sections and quickly find their appropriate peer group. In our local, highly competitive day, or day and boarding school options, Shore graduates are well represented. Approximately half of Shore’s graduates choose boarding schools around the northeast. New England’s rich assortment of schools is ideal for the varied interests, passions, and strengths of Shore graduates! Selection is tailored on the basis of appropriate personal style and program, and our students are often ready for this new stage of independence.  Visit this page to learn more information about where our students head after graduation, and read this news story about recent success in finding the best high school for each Shore student.
  • At what age are my children able to begin attending Shore?

    Shore’s Pre-K curriculum is a one or two year program. Our youngest learners in Pre-K 1 are at least 3 years 6 months at the start of the school year in the fall. Pre-K 2 class is designed for our older preschool children who need an additional year of school before Kindergarten.
  • What makes Shore's Pre-K class unique?

    With an academic curriculum that includes the foundation work for literary and math skills as well as SAIL (our Science and Art Integrated Learning curriculum), Spanish, music, physical education, library, and health, the Pre-K classes takes time for developmental growth within the richness of a full day schedule. The approach remains strongly experiential and multi-sensory at the same time as children travel campus-wide to take advantage of Shore’s varied facilities and specialist teachers. Structured time is carefully balanced with time for play and exploration. High fives and excitement abound as students acclimate to the formalities of the traditional school day. Still growing toward a fullness of independence, Pre-K children treasure both the extra attention of their fifth grade “brothers and sisters” and the personal focus provided by the 7:1 student to teacher ratio in this special grade or program.
  • How often is physical education scheduled?

    Pre-K students enjoy physical education classes three days a week, and all grades from Kindergarten through Grade Nine attend physical education or sports four or five days per week. Energy and focus for learning are further enhanced by two daily breaks for recess in all grades, and seventh and eighth graders use the physical stretch of Project Adventure sessions for group problem solving and personal challenge. Learn more.
  • At what age are children exposed to technology?

    Technology learning permeates all levels of a Shore education. Students in Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 3 use iPads in their classrooms for a wide range of learning activities. Chromebooks are provided for Grade 4 as a transitional device used for collaborating, writing, and keyboarding. Each student in Grades 5-9 is provided with a MacBook Air laptop as part of Shore’s Student-Assigned Device program, which is used extensively throughout the school day. Learn more.
  • When does world language instruction begin?

    Spanish is taught at all grade levels, Pre-K through Grade 9, and Latin is an additional opportunity in Grades 8 and 9. Typically, Shore eighth grade graduates enter high school Spanish level II, and graduates from Grade 9 enter level III. In our youngest grades, emphasis is on oral and cultural experiences as they connect to both the daily and curricular experiences of our students. In our Upper School grades, equal balance is given to the development of speaking, listening, reading, writing, and cultural understanding.
  • Why does Shore offer a ninth grade?

    Shore’s ninth grade originated at a time when various high schools did not begin until grade ten, but today it remains a premier setting for the pursuit of one’s freshman year. Shore ninth graders are asked to step up in every way: academically, extracurricularly, and, above all, personally. Their curriculum contains choices in the arts, language and history, and students' selections of either advanced studio or advanced theater art places them in a full, major, academic art course that is yearlong in duration. Our grade ten matriculants enjoy smooth, confident academic and personal transitions; they are ready for an environment of older adolescents, and they are already experienced in navigating the elevated expectations of high school. Learn more about Shore's ninth grade.
  • What towns are represented among Shore families?

    Shore attracts students from over 40 different towns and communities. While our largest representations are from Beverly, Hamilton, Marblehead, Lynnfield, and Manchester, students hail from as far north as Newburyport, Andover, and Hampton, NH; south to Revere; west to Lexington; and east to Rockport. Attending an independent school such as Shore is an opportunity for the variety of exposure created by drawing families from so many different settings.
  • How do families handle transportation?

    Supporting students arriving from 40 different communities, Shore families make use of five bus routes originating in Andover, Marblehead, Newburyport, Lexington, and Gloucester. Further detail regarding bus routes can be found here. Other families will complete drop-off and pick-up while many still coordinate carpools with other families from their town.  Shore is happy to help families contact each for help within their geographic area and to avail themselves of parents with years of driving wisdom to share!
  • What kind of involvement is there for parents?

    Fortunately for Shore and its students, parents have a strong tradition of involvement in their children’s education. Teachers and administrators expect to be in communication regarding students, and outside of our biannual parent/teacher conference schedule, parents are welcome to convene with teachers anytime that it is needed. Especially in our early grades, parents often enjoy bringing a special project to the classroom or being an extra set of helping hands for celebrations. We welcome parents to sit in on their child’s daily experience on occasion during the year or simply to join their child for a lunchtime visit. Parent volunteerism is strong at Shore, and our program is greatly enhanced by parents’ time, efforts, talents, and contributions. Our library staff is greatly assisted by a well-trained group of library volunteers. Our active Parents Association has involvement to offer even our busiest of families!
  • What additional expenses beyond tuition will I have to pay?

    Shore’s comprehensive tuition is designed to be all-inclusive. Fees for classroom supplies, field trips, snacks and lunch, school photos, and the like are already accounted for in the figures listed. Only those supplies that vary by individual need, such as Upper School books or athletic clothing, are billed above and beyond Shore’s comprehensive tuition.
  • Does Shore have a Dress Code?

    Yes -- please view our current Dress Code.
  • How is discipline handled at Shore?

    Our aim to help children grow from their experiences. Within the classrooms of the Lower School or the advisee groups of the Upper School, Shore works hard both to articulate our daily expectations for children and to responsively engage them in problem solving. For individual discipline, children are addressed quickly and personally; our desire is not to remove them from their peer group. Repeated or more serious circumstances will bring a student into the presence of their Division Head and quickly involve parents.
  • Does Shore administer the MCAS?

    Shore does not administer the MCAS. In place of state mandated goals, we adhere to the policies put forth by the National Association of Independent Schools, and our ten-year, institutional evaluation is overseen by the Association of Independent Schools of New England. As with all independent schools, Shore’s curriculum is framed by the intersection of basic skills with stretch and creativity. While accountability and curriculum are enhanced by annual standardized testing that begins at Grade Two, teaching is neither mandated nor constrained by test goals such as the MCAS. Shore utilizes the Comprehensive Testing Program of the ERB in Grades 2-6; students in Grades 7-9 are scheduled for the SSAT each year.

Application Process Questions

List of 9 frequently asked questions.

  • Can I substitute my child's report card for the School Evaluation form?

    Although it may feel awkward asking your child’s current teacher for information that will expedite your child’s departure from his or her current setting, it is a requirement that all school information be communicated directly and confidentially between current school and potential, future school. Considered a Principle of Good Practice, through this direct exchange, teachers are unfailingly supportive of and honest about the students they shepherd each day. Current school information provides one of the cornerstones for effective evaluation. Likewise, personal conversations with teachers offer valuable resources should questions arise during the discussions of a candidate.
  • What if my child cannot be present for one of Shore's scheduled test days?

    Make-up sessions are quickly scheduled, and Shore makes every effort to be as accommodating as possible. Candidates from outside of the region can be scheduled for testing that coincides with holiday travel or house-hunting expeditions.
  • What is Shore's policy regarding the enrollment of siblings?

    Happily, over 90% of our sibling candidates qualify for enrollment on an annual basis. Candidates of current families receive priority for available spaces.  If you are a current Shore family and would like to apply for another sibling, please contact the Admissions office.
  • How difficult is it to be new at Shore when entering at an older grade?

    The school works hard to ensure the comfort of each entering child. New students are welcomed for individual classroom visits, as desired, throughout the spring. During the summer, one of Shore’s current families with a child at the same grade level will formally extend their welcome as a Host Family. Once school is underway, teachers are especially mindful of social inclusion, classroom pairings, and academic transitions. Shore’s returning students are remixed into new class configurations each year, and all look forward to getting reacquainted or newly acquainted with classmates in September. A returning Shore parent will act as a New Family Liaison during new families' first year, providing them with periodical updates including previews of upcoming events and serving as a resource for any questions that arise.
  • How difficult is it to get into Shore?

    Three-quarters of applicants to Shore are strong students and are qualified for entrance. Two-thirds of those who are qualified will be offered the opportunity to enroll. Pre-K 1, Pre-K 2, Kindergarten, Grade One, Grade Five, and Grade Six continue to be our most accessible points of entry.
  • To which preschool should I send my child to best prepare for Shore's Pre-K or Kindergarten programs?

    The best preschool setting for your child is one where your child will feel happy, engaged, and safe each day. Shore’s new Pre-K 1, Pre-K 2, and Kindergarten students enter from as many as 20 different programs each year. Specific academic preparation is not necessary. Some of our entering students have never attended a preschool; others have attended for one year; some have been in programs from infancy.
  • If my child is put on the Waiting List, what are their chances for entry?

    Shore is eager to enroll candidates from its Waiting Lists, and every candidate in this category is considered comfortably qualified for Shore’s curriculum. At the same time, in an effort to avoid over-enrollment, the school is conservative about how many initial offers it makes beyond spaces available. As a PK-9 school that annually enrolls its largest groups of new students in Pre-K 1, Pre-K 2, and Kindergarten, these grades' Waiting Lists are our most fluid. We openly encourage interested candidates to wait as long as they have the option to do so, as the odds are strongly in their favor for eventual enrollment!
  • If my child is qualified but cannot enroll, does he or she have to test again the following year?

    Shore does require that candidates retest in a subsequent admissions year. We want to place every candidate in their best position to flourish. Having up-to-date information is usually the best means to this end. Twelve months’ growth represents considerable change in a child. As well, should a candidate then enroll at Shore, our first hand information about them is fresh and applicable to their upcoming transition into our program.
  • When will I receive a decision regarding my child's application?

    For candidates for the 2019-2020 school year who submit all application components prior to February 1, 2019, decisions will be announced on March 8, 2019.

Independent School Questions

Shore is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and the Association of Independent Schools of New England (AISNE). The web sites of both organizations contain helpful information for families looking to discover more about independent schools. Shore encourages prospective families to deepen their explorations by visiting these additional resources.