Shady Side Academy

About Us

Shady Side Academy is a nationally respected private school for boys and girls in grades pre-kindergarten through 12, with an optional boarding experience in high  school. To meet the needs of children in various life stages, Shady Side Academy is set on three unique campuses. The seven-acre Junior School (PK-5) is in Point Breeze, while the 35-acre Middle School (6-8) and 130-acre Senior School (9-12) are in Fox Chapel. At Shady Side, there is a balanced approach to education with a commitment to students’ academic, physical and emotional development. Putting that approach into action is a caring faculty dedicated to fostering a true love of learning in students. The academic program provides a challenging, yet nurturing, atmosphere that encourages inquiry, questioning, self-determination and creativity. Teachers urge students to think expansively, read deeply and stretch ideas broadly helping them to develop into critical thinkers who can write analytically and speak confidently. An average class size of 15 students encourages a strong sense of community. Passionate teachers set high expectations for students, pushing and challenging them to reach their full potential. They serve as coaches and advisors, building strong, authentic relationships with students that last a lifetime. Arts and athletics are an integral part of the curriculum.

Music, visual and performing arts are intertwined into all levels of learning, and students are encouraged to explore an array of athletic options and find the sport or activity best for them. Extracurricular activities and clubs support students’ diverse interests. The Academy’s Guiding Principles of honesty, kindness, responsibility, respect and safety form the foundation of a strong character education program. Students are engaged in meaningful service learning projects in all grades to cultivate the value of giving back to the community. Senior School students refine critical thinking, writing and analytical skills that distinguish them in the college search, while three full-time college counselors support them through the process. The average SAT score is more than 400 points above the national average, and SSA enjoys a 100% college matriculation rate. An impressive 58% of 2015 graduates attend schools ranked among the Top 50 universities and liberal arts colleges by U.S. News & World Report and 6% attend Ivy League schools. Our graduates from the Classes of 2012-2015 have gone on to attend 143 of the finest colleges and universities in North America, including Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, Washington University St. Louis, Middlebury College, Emory University and the U.S. military academies. The Senior School offers both five- and seven-day boarding options.

Boarders benefit from extra study hours with teachers, greater access to school resources and the convenience of attending campus events outside of school hours. Living away from home, with a 2:1 faculty to student ratio in the residential life program, students learn responsibility and independence in a supervised setting, which helps prepare them for a smooth transition to college. Boarders have the opportunity to participate in weekend cultural, educational and service activities that take advantage of our campus and proximity to Pittsburgh.

3 Key Program Features:

  1. The Senior School campus is on 130 beautiful acres 6 miles outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  2. Independent studies, semester programs, Parkin Fellowships and senior projects allow students to personalize their experience
  3. The SSA Farm is a sustainability initiative which provides experiential learning and leadership opportunities for students
  • Total Enrollment : 500
  • Type : Co-Ed
  • Boarding Grades : 9-12
  • Total Students : 500
  • Boarding Students : 55
  • Day Students : 445
  • ESL Offered : Yes
  • Summer Program :
  • Avg. Class Size : 15
  • Standard Application : Yes
  • Academic URL :
  • Sport URL :
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