Mridula Manoj, Class of 2012
I graduated from NGFS in 2012 after going to school here for my entire life. From a very young age, I was taught to go beyond a textbook. I was taught to think critically about why what I was learning was important, how it applied to the real world, and how I could use what I had learned to become a thoughtful and productive member of my community.
Beginning in kindergarten, I learned the power of service rooted in compassion, respect, and a sincere dedication to the well-being of those around me. In middle school and high school social studies classes, I took part in discussions that were challenging and meaningful. I learned to not to be afraid to engage in honest dialogue, even if it’s really hard and scary.
But beyond this, the most distinctive and remarkable aspect of NGFS for me is that I felt empowered here. I learned that diversity is not just something to be tolerated, it's something to be celebrated. I was told that what I say matters, and that I have the power to influence what happens in my life and in my community. And that's important, especially today. Every young person should know deeply that their voice is strong and important.
These real-world experiences matter because the tools and knowledge we are equipped with in school are only as valuable as the ways in which we choose to use them in our lives. I feel very lucky that I was surrounded by adults who helped me develop the confidence to make a difference. NGFS is a small community in a small corner of the world, but what we learn and who we become at this school far transcend the four walls of a classroom.
Jay Jahnes, Parent of a kindergartener and second grader
We cannot overstate how happy we are that we chose to begin our children’s education at New Garden Friends School. At NGFS, they have received the love and individual support that has helped them grow and develop as people. We believe that as a result of the rich environment provided by NGFS, they have both developed a genuine excitement for learning. Some days, our children spend long hours at school and in the aftercare program, and it has been hugely comforting for us to know that this time is spent in a safe, fun and wholesome community. It is so great to see them happy, well adjusted and looking forward to learning new things.