Back to School - Upper School

Get ready for the 2019-2020 school year!

Here’s what you need to know and do.

Important Dates
Date Event
Various dates
First Week of August
  • Instructions for accessing Upper School schedules are sent via email with online change request instructions
Aug. 19
  • Parking permits are distributed by the security office.
  • Lockers for students in grades 10-12 are distributed by Student Life.
Aug. 20
  • Parking permits are distributed by the security office.
  • Lockers for students in grades 10-12 are distributed by Student Life (in person, on campus).
  • Freshman Pre-Orientation Meet and Greet Event. 4:00-5:30 pm, US Quad. An informal fun get-together for students.
Aug. 21
  • Freshman Orientation. 8:30 am-2:00 pm, Martin Family Hall/Athletic Center. (Students should arrive at Martin Hall by 8:30 am and can be picked up on campus at 2:00 pm.) Read more details from the Freshman Dean. Bring your laptop!
  • Freshman Parents’ Coffee. 8:30 am, Dining Commons.
  • Senior Class BBQ. 5:00-7:00 pm, US Quad.
Aug. 22
  • First Day of Classes. School begins at 8:30 am with an assembly in the
    Athletic Center.
  • Schedule Change Requests, if not done electronically before the first day of school, can be done in-person by meeting with Registrar Julie Hammack.
Aug. 28
  • First MSPA meeting. 8:45 am (hospitality at 8:15 am), Martin Family Hall.
Aug. 29
  • Ninth Grade Parent Information Evening. 6:00-7:30 pm, Martin Family Hall.
Sept. 12
  • US Back-to-School Night. 6:00-8:00 pm, US Quad.
  • Parent Evenings and Parent Socials. Check your Grade Level News pages for details.

You can also view the full school calendar.  

Before School Starts, Do This:

1. Turn in your Health and Athletic Forms

2. Sign the Student and Parent Handbook

3. Course Schedules and Course Changes

  • Course schedules were sent electronically on July 29, and the email included instructions for requesting changes electronically prior to the start of school.
  • If you need to make a request on the first day of the school (Aug. 22), Registrar Julie Hammack will be available for course change requests

4. Finish Your Summer Assignments

5. Get Your Books and Laptop

  • Get the books you’ll need for your classes! Textbooks for most of your classes (other than English) are available for purchase from  Get free shipping on orders of $99+ between July 31-Aug. 13. You’ll want to reference your full class schedule when ordering your books. English booklists will be posted on the library website a week before school starts and detailed in a syllabus you receive on the first day. (Note: you are not required to purchase from MBS Direct; you can order them from any vendor you prefer just be sure to match the ISBN numbers.) 
  • You’ll also need to ensure you have a laptop for the start of school.
  • And, in case you’re wondering what Upper School students will need for the first day, in addition to their fully-charged laptop, students should bring a binder or notebook, assigned summer work, and a pencil or pen. There isn’t a master list of required supplies for Upper School students as each student’s needs will depend on their courses. Teachers will let students know what supplies will be needed for each class. 

6. Find an Alternative Way to Get to School

  • Help reduce traffic! GO MENLO is THE way the Menlo community gets to and from school. Make a commitment to walk, bike, carpool, or ride the train or bus. You can also take one of the four Menlo buses,  from San Mateo/San Carlos/Redwood City, Woodside/Portola Valley, East Palo Alto/Palo Alto/Menlo Park, and Cupertino/Los Alto. You can also use the Carpool Map  to find other Menlo families for a carpool.

7. Fill Out Important Forms

  • Order student photo packages from those taken for our School Directory (known as the Menlo Knightbook ).
  • Fill out the Authorization to Drive Students if you plan to drive students to field trips, sporting events, etc.
  • Juniors and Seniors: complete the Parking Registration Form and return it to the Student Life Office on Aug. 19 and before the first day of classes. You can register for a carpool parking space with this form at the same time.
  • Grades 10-12: Sign up for Quad-area lockers in person in the Student Life Office (Aug. 19-20). First come, first served! (Freshmen—no need to do this; you’ll sign up at orientation.)

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New families: A temporary website login was included in a recent email. Your permanent login information will be sent to you the week of August 12. After that, if you have trouble logging in, please contact with your child’s full name and grade level. We will respond to you in a timely manner.

You may also want to check out the Menlo Dictionary to help understand the programs and terminology at Menlo.