Upper School

Through a comprehensive Upper School program designed for how girls learn best, we inspire each girl to reach her full potential—both as a student and as a person. 

Students in Upper School experience a highly individualized environment where learning is self-directed, hands-on, and multidisciplinary—making their journey more relevant and meaningful. They discover interests, pursue their passions, and develop the tools and skills
to make any dream possible.

GPS Upper School is designed to further introduce girls to learning opportunities that exercise their critical analysis, collaboration, and communication skills as well as their creativity while also building advocacy and confidence. Upper School students become the best version of themselves at GPS.

The GPS College Journey

Selecting a college is a personal journey that involves the student, her college counselor, and her family.
It is more than academics and extracurriculars. Rather: Who is she and what does her future hold?



As our seniors plan for their transition to college, they should be more than just academically prepared. Through adulting programming, our soon-to-be graduates learn everything from how to have civil discourse to how to wash clothes and prepare dorm food. Students learn how to best protect themselves on unfamiliar campuses, and those interested in rushing a sorority can learn the ins and outs of the process. There are also sessions focused on financial responsibility and job searching. 


Upper School students begin to imagine the futures they wish to pursue and focus on their paths to college. Our curriculum is designed to guide students to become critical thinkers, articulate speakers and writers, empathetic collaborators, and resilient problem-solvers.

Academic Highlights

  • The academic year is divided into semesters; Upper School students attend each class five times in an eight-day rotation, one hour per meeting, with study halls and help class time built into each day.
  • Select GPS juniors conduct research with a science professor through our University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Research Program. 
  • We offer a dedicated, onsite science research laboratory. National Honor Society, Bluebell Society, and the Cum Laude Society all recognize GPS students for outstanding scholastic achievement.
  • Eighteen members of the Class of 2023 were inducted into The Cum Laude Society the spring of their senior year. 
  • GPS students benefit from one of the best-equipped libraries and makerspaces in the region. Here everything is hands-on—from the VR stations and 3D printers to the robotics, podcast, and green screen studios. 

Browse the Upper School Curriculum

Did You Know?

Confidence is a key predictor for success—even more so than intelligence. It’s also an area where many girls struggle. While confidence cannot be taught, it can be cultivated. At GPS, our primary goal is to nurture and grow each girl’s confidence in herself and her abilities.

Fine and Performing Arts

The Fine & Performing Arts Program at GPS provides a safe space for a girl to express herself, develop new interests, take risks, uncover hidden talents, and foster deep connections. Beautiful works of art are created but, more importantly, a girl learns to master a creative process that will benefit her throughout life—whether she wants to be a software engineer, a painter, or an accountant.


The GPS Athletics mission teaches girls to be team players, understand the importance of mental toughness, accept challenges enthusiastically, and value strength, fitness, stamina, and good health. Ultimately, the GPS athletic environment is about aiming to be the very best on the field of competition, in the classroom, and in life.

GPS has the only all-girl program in the area with two National Strength and Conditioning Association-Certified Specialists.

Signature Programming

True learning requires students to go beyond the confines of the classroom—to engross themselves in experience. At GPS, we offer signature programming you won’t find elsewhere.

Bruisers for belonging

Forums represent opportunities for students to discuss important issues with those who either share a similar perspective or lived experience or wish to better understand a perspective that differs from their own. Forums offer a safe and supportive atmosphere for conversation and advocacy. Discussions in these groups may focus on challenges encountered or approaches learned with the goal of providing participants with a greater understanding about themselves and cultivating a sense of belonging for all individuals at GPS.

So Much More To Experience

We recognize that selecting a school is a life-changing decision. While there are many strong options for a high school education in our region, we believe that GPS is the best independent school for girls.