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Upper School

#14 Private High School in Illinois

Pursuing Excellence in All We Do

Our Upper School provides a supportive, values-aligned community where all students have access to robust programs that help them realize and fulfill their potential. 

By the time they graduate, Hilltoppers are:
- Secure in their abilities
- Disciplined in their thinking
- Creative in their collaboration
- Compassionate toward others
- Dedicated to achieving their goals

To provide a holistic education, we combine high academic standards with expectations for involvement in the arts and sports in an environment where it is just as important to learn from failure as it is to flourish.

“When my kids go to college, they will be fully prepared. And when they get out into the world, they will be able to write well, fend for themselves, and advocate for themselves.”

Current EA Parent

Debunk the Common Myths About the College Process

Thinking about the next step in your student’s education can be daunting. Recently Doug Sept, Elgin Academy’s Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs, unveiled five truths about preparing for college to help families Debunk the Common Myths About the College Process during a 30-minute webinar.


Nearly 100% of our graduates matriculate to their desired college or university to cultivate their interests, pursue meaningful careers, and make a positive impact on the world. 

Meet Our Upper School Faculty & Staff

“We found some wonderful teachers who were caring, engaging, and personalized. You know those once-in-a-lifetime teachers you get? At EA, we got them multiple times.”

Parent of an EA Graduate

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Helen Elayan

Helen Elayan

Director of Personalized Learning
MA, Adler School of Professional Psychology
BA, DePaul University

My philosophy as a school counselor is the belief that every student can succeed. Learning is a lifelong process and I want to help students foster a positive self-image all in collaboration with the school, home, and community. My goal as the school counselor at EA is to provide a safe place for all students and to address every student's intellectual, emotional, and social needs.
-Helen Elayan

Katherine Kruse

Katherine Kruse

Director of International Studies, ELL Teacher
MS Ed., Northern Illinois University
BA, Northern Illinois University

I am passionate about fostering cultural diversity through student exchange and international education. It is my mission to enhance cultural perspectives, mutual respect, and global responsibility through building programs and services for the development of international students, local students and the greater community of Elgin.
-Katie Kruse

Brian Allen

Brian Allen

Upper School Social Studies
BS, Taylor University

My goal as a teacher is to support genuine inquiry, meaningful experiences, and personal connections. It is my belief that learning is about more than information, it is about making relevant connections and applications within a community.
- Brian Allen

Ashley Anderson

Ashley Anderson

Upper School English
BS, Missouri State University

It is upon the fundamentals of reading, writing, listening, and speaking that we find access to the good, the beautiful, and the true. Personal invitation for intentional practice of these skills is at the core of my mission as a teacher. Each student in my care is encouraged to create with authenticity, explore complex ideas, ask thoughtful questions, discover joy in learning, and strive for excellence.
- Ashley Anderson