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Detroit Country Day School (also known as DCDS, DCD, or Country Day) is a private, secular school located in four campuses in Oakland Countymarker, Michiganmarker, north of Detroitmarker. The administrative offices, facility services, safety and security services, and the upper school (Grades 9-12) are located in a campus in Beverly Hillsmarker. The middle school (6-8) is in Beverly Hills, while the Lower School (PK-2) and Junior School (3-5) are located in two separate campuses in Bloomfield Townshipmarker, near Bloomfield Hillsmarker.

DCDS was founded in Detroit in 1914, inspired by the Country Day School movement. The school's motto is Mens Sana in Corpore Sano or 'Sound Mind in a Sound Body'. DCDS is considered one of the top college preparatory schools in the Midwest, maintaining a tradition of both athletic and academic excellence.


In addition to a series of honors and Advanced Placement courses, students at Detroit Country Day may pursue an International Baccalaureate Diploma. Most graduating classes consist of 140 to 180 students. 100% of DCDS graduates are accepted at accredited four-year colleges and universities. DCDS holds the highest percentage of National Merit Scholar semifinalists and finalists in Michigan.


Unlike most public and many private schools, extracurricular activities are required at DCDS. Under the "points system," these requirements are tracked by the accumulation of blue points (athletics), gold points (clubs) and white points (service). All students must play two competitive sports (one point may come from strength training, varsity debate, science fair, robotics, drama, or extracurricular activities deemed appropriate), join one club, and perform ten hours of volunteer work per year. Students attending DCDS on scholarship may face more stringent requirements depending on the terms of the scholarship.

Detroit Country Day School participates in Class B Michigan High School Athletic Association athletics, frequently sending teams to regional and state finals in soccer, basketball and tennis. Additionally, the school fields teams in many other sports, notably football, tennis, golf, lacrosse, field and ice hockey, baseball, softball, volleyball, skiing, bowling, mountain biking and track and field. Intramural teams include ultimate frisbee and snowboarding. In total, DCDS offers more than 30 athletic programs. The DCDS mascot is the Yellow Jacket.

While at Country Day, basketball players Chris Webber and Shane Battier each won the Naismith Prep Player of the Year Award, making Country Day one of only two schools to have multiple Naismith award winners. Webber and Battier are also the only Naismith winners from the state of Michigan.

In March 2004 the Michigan High School Athletic Association recommended that DCDS voluntarily forfeit three state basketball championships won between 1989 and 1991, claiming that former DCDS star Chris Webber had violated his amateur status via his relationship with University of Michiganmarker athletic booster Ed Martin. DCDS declined to follow the MHSAA's suggestion.


Detroit Country Day School offers an active fine and performing arts program, celebrated every April through "Celebrate the Arts" weekend at the Upper School campus. Visual arts are part of the student experience at the Lower and Junior Schools, becoming formal academic curriculum at the Middle and Upper Schools. Similarly, general music and keyboard is part of the student experience at the Lower School, but not formal curriculum. Band, orchestra and choir classes begin at the Junior School level, where they are taken as electives during or after school hours. At both the Middle and Upper Schools, multi level performing classes for band, orchestra and choir meet during school hours. These Upper School classes compete at MSVMA and MSBOA festivals. Bella Voce, a 20 voice mixed ensemble auditioned from the Upper School's Concert Choir, performed in Austria and Germany in 2001, Italy in 2006, and Carnegie Hall in 2008.

The Seligman Family Performing Arts Center, which opened in 2000, houses state-of-the-art digital sound, lighting and projection equipment, allowing for the production of all forms of performing art, including films and lectures. However, due to building height restrictions in the Village of Beverly Hills, the PAC lacks a fly system. The PAC has housed Off Broadway shows such as "The Stoop on Orchard Street" and is the home venue for the Chamber Music Society of Detroit ([87953]). The PAC is frequently used for school assemblies and two major school productions, typically one drama and one musical per year.


The Detroit Preparatory School was founded in 1914 by F. Alden Shaw, based on an educational philosophy espoused at the Country School for Boys in Baltimore, MD. The original school opened with four pupils, was briefly taught out of Mr. Shaw's mother's dining room, and stressed both academics and athletics. By 1923 the school had acquired a new name - Detroit Country Day School - and moved to a new campus on Seven Mile Road in the upscale neighborhood of Palmer Woods.

During the immediate pre-war era and World War II, DCDS took on some aspects of a military academy. The school brought in Army instructors to teach physical education, and students were encouraged to enlist upon graduation. The school reverted to a civilian footing with the end of the war.

The period 1950-1980 marked a large expansion in DCDS' student body and facilities. By the mid-1950s the school had outgrown its Palmer Park campus, and the school's directors designed plans to expand into the northern suburbs. In 1957 the school moved into a considerably larger new campus on Thirteen Mile Road in the suburb of Beverly Hills. Shortly thereafter, further growth necessitated the split of the school into three (later four) campuses: the Lower School at Fifteen Mile and Lahser, and the Middle and Upper Schools at the 13 Mile campus. In 1986 DCDS added a fourth (Junior School) campus, and the Middle School moved into its own building behind the Upper School in 1991. In 2008, DCDS began construction on a Middle School gymnasium, scheduled for completion in 2009.

Until 1940 DCDS was strictly a boys' school. Girls were first admitted to Grades K-6 in 1940, but were not allowed admission to the Upper School until 1972.

With the completion of the World Campus capital campaign in 2000, the 13 Mile Campus underwent a comprehensive program of expansion and upgrading. Improvements included a larger, renovated library, a new computer laboratory, two new wings of classrooms, a renovated Common Room, and a new Performing Arts Center (previously, morning assemblies were held in the gym and dramatic productions staged in the cafeteria). Other upgrades included new landscaping, restoration of the Rouge River watershed that borders the campus, and improved student and faculty parking. Additionally, the building was completely wired for Ethernet and partially for Wi-Fi connectivity in preparation for the pioneering "Knowledge Technologies" student computing program, which kicked off in the 1999-2000 school year. DCDS was one of the first K-12 schools in the nation to require every Middle School and Upper School student to own a laptop PC, and remains at the forefront of technological integration in the classroom.

Former Assistant Headmaster Glen Shilling became the school's new Headmaster in July 2007. Former Headmaster Gerald Hansen retired from the Headmaster position to take over as President of the Country Day Fund, where he now concentrates on fund raising for Country Day. Shilling is the school's fifth Headmaster in its 93 year history.

Notable alumni

Notable alumni include:


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