School Program Overview
Academics at Marshall
Throughout their four years at Thurgood Marshall, students explore a wide range of literary and informational texts, which reflect an increasing level of complexity as they move towards their senior year and the rigors of college-level texts. Students are challenged to perform increasingly complex analysis in their writing, and develop their ability to use textual evidence to support an argument. Our English courses utilize the SFUSD English Language Arts core curriculum, and are aligned to the Common Core State Standards.
At Marshall, students are given the opportunity to make meaning as they engage in mathematical tasks with other students each day. Our math classes utilize the SFUSD math core curriculum, which uses a constructivist learning approach and is aligned to the Common Core State Standards for mathematics.
Students at Marshall choose from a range of science courses, including biology, chemistry, physics, biotechnology, physiology, and advanced placement classes. Our science classes are aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards, which have been designed to reflect current research on how students best learn scientific concepts and to match international benchmarks for science education.
Social studies courses at Marshall provide opportunities for students to learn about the world they live in through multiple lenses. In addition to covering the California content standards, the experiences of African Americans, Asian Americans, Latinos, women, and others are incorporated into both the core social studies requirements, US and world history, government, and economics, as well as elective social studies courses such as ethnic studies and psychology.
At Marshall, we offer world language courses in Spanish. Classes range from introductory courses for beginners through advanced offerings designed to develop the skills of native speakers as well.
At Thurgood Marshall we hold a vision of our school as a destination campus within the city of San Francisco, known for an exceptional academic program and consistent success in preparing students to go on to the nation’s best colleges and universities, as well as careers in the Bay Area’s top industries, including information technology, biotechnology, and hospitality and tourism. Our goal is to offer students a personalized program that allows them to identify and pursue their passions while still in high school. Students select their classes each year based on their individual interests, progress towards graduation requirements, and college and career plans.
We offer students a comprehensive program designed to foster their growth in six domains, collectively referred to as our Graduate Profile:
Content Knowledge: Mastery of the core knowledge, critical thinking skills, and competencies outlined by the Common Core State Standards.
Career and Life Skills: The knowledge, skills, and experience to navigate the “real world” and solve problems that arise in everyday life and in the workplace.
Global, Local, and Digital Identity: The ability to navigate and engage in a 21st century global society that is more inclusive and interconnected.
Leadership, Empathy and Collaboration: Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to positively influence and collaborate with others.
Creativity: The freedom, confidence and ability to express their unique selves.
Sense of Purpose and Sense of Self: Our graduates will see themselves as filled with purpose and value.
We accomplish these goals for our students through a rigorous and engaging academic program, as well as a broad range of extracurricular activities, as described below.
The Internationals’ Pathway at Thurgood Marshall
Students who are new to the United States and need to develop proficiency in English as well as mastery of high school content have the opportunity to participate in our newcomer pathway. Developed in partnership with the Internationals’ Network for Public Schools, the pathway provides newcomers with explicit language instruction embedded within their core content classes.
Visual and Performing Arts
Thurgood Marshall has a comprehensive visual and performing arts program that allows students to both discover new passions as well as develop their level of skill in the artistic endeavors they have been pursuing for a number of years. Visual and performing arts courses include drawing and painting, band, piano, and guitar.
Game Design Academy
Students with an interest in information technology have an opportunity to learn the fundamentals of programming, story and character development, and 3-D image design in our Zynga Game Design Academy. Students in the academy take a two-year sequence in game design, culminating in the creation and release of their own video game. Students may apply to the Game Design Academy beginning in their junior year, although freshmen and sophomores may be considered on a case by case basis as well.
Phoenix Extended Day Program
The Extended Day Program includes a wide range of academic, recreation, and enrichment activities afterschool daily. Throughout the year, offerings include dance, SAT prep class, strength and conditioning, and Phoenix Scholars academic tutoring.
All Thurgood Marshall students have the opportunity to participate in Peer Resources; interested students may also have the opportunity to enroll in a full-year Peer Resources course. Peer Resources seeks to promote just change both within our school and the community through the leadership of young people engaging, training, and advocating for their peers. Peer Resources supports the healthy development of youth by providing opportunities for them to practice leadership, foster their personal, civic, and social responsibility, and make a real difference in their lives, schools, and communities.
Our athletic program provides opportunities for both beginning and experienced athletes to play a wide range of sports. We offer Dragon Boat, volleyball, soccer, badminton, baseball, and softball. All students are encouraged to participate in one or more athletic teams during their time at Marshall, for the purpose of fostering a sense of belonging and teamwork, as well as for the possibility of finding a new passion in life.
Culinary Arts Program
Beginning this year, students will have the opportunity to take a culinary class taught by Chef Michael De Leon. Throughout the course, students will learn how to make a wide range of dishes from different cultures.
Fitness for Life
All Thurgood Marshall students participate in our award-winning physical education program, Fitness for Life. Through this two-year course sequence, students learn the basics of physical fitness, including how to monitor and interpret their heart rate data as they exercise, and how to carry out a balanced fitness regimen.