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What Does It Mean To Be a Friends School?

Quakers believe there is "that of God" in everyone. This belief is intrinsic to the fabric of our school and is seen in the daily interactions between all members of our community.

We see it in the classroom, where teachers value the unique gifts that each student offers. We hear it in Meeting for Worship, when we listen to those who feel moved to speak out of the silence. We experience it in service to others, when we encounter worldviews that challenge our own.

The practice of peaceful resolution of conflict, service toward others, and respect and inclusion are fundamental pieces of who we are as a school. It is evident in the small moments that make up our days.

A Brief History of Quaker Education

New Garden Friends School is built on a tradition of Quaker education that began over 300 years ago. The Religious Society of Friends, or Quakers, has a long history of involvement in education. In addition to the establishment of their own schools, Quakers were instrumental in the development of public schools and took the lead in the education of girls, freed slaves, and Native Americans.

Their central conviction of that of God in everyone gave rise to a genuine respect for the intrinsic worth of all people. This belief, and flowing from it the Quaker testimonies of simplicity, peaceful resolution of conflict, integrity, community, and equality continue to provide the foundation for an education where children’s moral development is an integral part of their social and academic growth. In addition to an innovative and challenging academic program, Friends schools promote social conscience and a sense of social responsibility. Students are encouraged to value people of all backgrounds, to be courageous in standing up for their convictions, and to become responsible members of the larger community.

More About Quaker Schools

NGFS is a member of the Friends Council on Education, a national organization of Friends schools whose mission is to support the implementation of Friends values in the classroom and in the life of the school community.