The year at Gillespie Academy is split into two semesters of 15 semester hours each. This means that for each week of the 13 week semester the student should expect to be in class for 15 hours. Classes are held Tuesday to Friday and a typical school day will run from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm with short breaks between classes and an hour lunch break. The four-day week allows students to go home for the weekends, if desired, and students have unanimously reported that having Monday’s off is very helpful in order to keep up with the program’s workload.
The program at Gillespie is purposefully rigorous. For every one hour of class time a typical student can expect an hour of homework. This means that a typical student can expect 15-20 hours of homework per week to keep up with class requirements. This expectation of time spent out of the classroom is critical for a student to succeed at Gillespie. An average student who is willing to put in the time and effort into each course will succeed. Equally so, a gifted student who refuses to put in the time will flounder academically.
Class sizes at Gillespie are kept relatively small on purpose. This enables a very robust interaction between student and professor in the classroom and we have found that this interactive dynamic is critical in getting the most from the classroom setting. A small class size also maximizes the student’s ability to interact with professors outside of the classroom, which is strongly encouraged.