Rules and Expectations

In the days of Mr. and Mrs. Boyden, a rulebook didn’t exist; Mr. Boyden would simply say, “We don’t do that sort of thing at Deerfield.”

Today, the Academy captures the essence of Mr. Boyden’s guidance in a set of core values:

  • Citizenship in a spirit of humility, empathy, and responsibility
  • Connectedness to our unique setting and the contemporary world
  • Pursuit of mastery built on a foundation of breadth and versatility
  • Face-to-face interactions characterized by joy and generosity of spirit
  • Reflection and balance, promoting intellectual vitality and self-understanding
  • Shared experiences, large and small, as sources of relationships, identity, and community

In Mr. Boyden’s day and now, we expect Deerfield students to have a solid grounding in the difference between right and wrong and to use that understanding as a guide in the decisions they make each day.

We’ve found it helpful to codify some of our expectations, but it is impossible  to list every rule. Instead, this handbook intends to create an environment where these core values are fostered and practiced. In addition, these rules aim to keep students safe, to ensure that all members of our community can access the full Deerfield experience, and to cultivate the judgment required for a lifetime of thoughtful decision-making.

Scope, Jurisdiction, and Reporting

Simply stated, these rules apply during the entire duration of enrollment at Deerfield: from the first moment students arrive on campus until they depart after graduation, online and offline. Particularly during that time, a student’s behavior should never jeopardize the welfare or reputation of the Academy or other Deerfield students.

At all times during enrollment—including school trips, during personal travel, and during vacation periods—students are expected to behave in a manner consistent with school rules and policies. School disciplinary procedures may be applied if the Academy is presented with information that students have violated school expectations while away; such infractions may result in disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion.

Students should note that faculty and staff are obligated to report rule violations and student misconduct—regardless of circumstance or method of discovery. These rules are not a legal contract, nor do they grant any additional rights or guarantees.


View the 2018-2019 Rules and Expectations for Deerfield Academy Students handbook.