Upper School

upper school students discussing lab assignment in science

Welcome to the Upper School

Catlin Gabel Upper School is a place of healthy stimulus, filled with creative, interesting, and curious people driven to continuously learn from, with, and about each other. Students collaborate in intellectual, playful, artistic, athletic, and entrepreneurial pursuits within a framework of inquiry and care.

This is an environment that fosters individual and collective development for ethically minded goals. Our school develops critical thinkers who communicate effectively, have agency, can deal with complexity, and know how to learn. Catlin Gabel graduates make the world a better place.

Relationships are important here. Teachers and students know each other well, and they connect through authentic bonds that matter to all of us and that make learning fun and engaging in and outside of the classroom.

This is a place of deep thought, avid learning, impressive choices, inspired inquiry, and continuous growth. It is also a place of joy and laughter.

Aline Garcia-Rubio ’93, Head of Upper School

Meet Aline Garcia-Rubio ’93, Head of Upper School

“What matters in the end is our capacity to continue to learn—having the mindset of being able to pursue anything”

Head of Upper School Aline Garcia-Rubio is committed to maintaining a school culture where lifelong learning is the norm, with teachers leading the way. Teacher modeling, she says “generates an environment in which there is high intellectual capacity, curiosity, and insight. And the kids feel that.”

Aline spent her junior year of high school at Catlin Gabel as a foreign exchange student from Mexico City. After receiving her medical degree from Universidad La Salle Mexico City, she was recruited by Punahou School in Hawaii to teach Biology, Human Anatomy, and Physiology. She returned to Catlin Gabel in the fall of 2006 as a teacher of Advanced Biology and Integrated Science.

At Catlin Gabel, she has also served as Science Department Chair for the Upper School; Science Curriculum Leader for the entire school; Upper School Assistant Head; and Upper School Dean of Students. She has been Head of Upper School since 2017.

"School, and then high school, is life itself," Aline says. "It's not just a springboard onto something else. That's part of what we're doing: We're preparing students for the next stage, but we're also doing this stage very well. We're creating an excellent environment for them to be in while they navigate this stage of their life."