News Archive

Friends' Central School did it again in the pool at the Friends Schools League Championships held at George School on Saturday, February 9. In front of a packed crowd, the Phoenix boys defended their league title successfully for the 16th consecutive season, and the girls took home another victory after placing one or more swimmers in the top 6 in 21 out of 22 events. 

Read more about FCS Boys' and Girls' Swimming Repeat as FSL Champions!

For the second consecutive year, Friends' Central senior Kristen Johnson was selected to perform in the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association (PMEA) District 11 Orchestra Festival, which took place at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School from January 10-12, 2019, with a special concert performed on Saturday, January 12.

Read more about FCS Senior Selected to Perform in PA Music Educators Association District 11 Orchestra Festival

In fall and early winter 2018, Friends' Central's campuses were abuzz with activity, including award-winning moments for our students, important sustainability achievements, athletic and academic successes, outstanding theater productions, orchestral and choral performances celebrating the holiday season, and inspiring guest speakers. Here are some highlights!

Read more about A Momentous Fall at Friends' Central

Friends' Central's Dining Hall of Shallcross Hall, located on the School's City Ave. campus, has been awarded a 3 Star Green Restaurant Certification by the Green Restaurant Association, a national non-profit dedicated to making restaurants and other dining facilities more sustainable. Recognized for its sustainability efforts in food offerings, energy and water efficiency, reduced waste efforts, and chemical and pollution reduction, FCS is one of only three schools that have been similarly certified in the State of Pennsylvania.

Read more about Friends' Central Receives 3 Star Green Restaurant Certification

On Tuesday, October 30, Friends' Central hosted pediatrician, professor, and noted public health advocate Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, whose research exposed the Flint water crisis, as the inaugural Distinguished Justice Leader. Author of What the Eyes Don't See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City, Dr. Mona met with groups of students during the day and spoke to a sold-out crowd in the evening. 

Read more about Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha Inspires Students, Faculty, and Community During Talks at Friends' Central

Our newly opened City Avenue Dining Hall has been up and running for over a month now, and students and faculty have been enjoying some fantastic, fresh offerings! This stunning, newly renovated dining space is highlighted by attractive, flexible seating arrangement options, five distinctive food stations, a fully functional teaching kitchen, and the after-school Phoenix Café, with sustainability efforts permeating the entire space.

Read more about New Exciting, Delicious, and Sustainable Highlights to Middle & Upper School Dining!

Sonia Chin describes her course, Frontiers and Techniques in Plant Science, which took place at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory as "summer camp for scientists." A PhD-trained scientist with expertise in animal biology, Sonia saw this course as a chance to revisit and explore plant biology with internationally renowned experts.

Read more about Upper School Teacher Attends "Summer Camp for Scientists" at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

For six weeks this summer, Friends' Central Upper School teachers Michael Darfler and Anna Schall participated in an exciting, cutting-edge summer learning opportunity called REThink. A National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded program that provides research experience for teachers at various universities across the US, the REThink program took place at Drexel University's College of Computing and Informatics (CCI) and focused on "Machine Learning to Enhance Human-Centered Computing."

Read more about FCS Teachers Spend Summer REThinking at Drexel

It is not uncommon to see alumni/ae on campus each day, particularly after school on the playing fields and courts. Many sports, including soccer, basketball, track, wrestling, and cheerleading, as well as Friends' Central Aquatics (FCA), are led by alumni/ae coaches who want to continue the culture of sportsmanship and integrity fostered by Friends' Central Athletics. In an effort to find out what brings alumni/ae back to campus to coach at FCS, rising senior Miles Johnson sought the perspective of six alum coaches.

Read more about Alumni/ae Coaches - Continuing the Culture of Sportsmanship and Integrity in FCS Athletics

On Thursday, April 19, Friends' Central welcomed over 340 people, including 150 Middle School student qualifiers from public and private schools in the tri-state area, to host the Regional Finals of the Middle School National History Bee. Four Friends' Central Middle Schoolers qualified for and participated in the Regional Finals, and based on their performance at Regionals, two students qualified for National Finals. In addition, six Upper School students competed in the National History Bee and Bowl Varsity and JV National Championships, which took place the weekend of April 27-29.

Read more about National History Bee Action at Friends' Central

On Wednesday, March 14, Friends’ Central students participated in the National School Walkout to end gun violence. Taking place exactly one month after the shooting in Parkland, FL, Friends’ Central joined schools nationwide who participated in the 17-minute walkout in honor of the 17 victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, as well as other communities affected by gun violence

Read more about Friends' Central Students Participate in National School Walkout

Artist, speaker, and activist Vishavjit Singh, aka Sikh Captain America, visited Friends' Central School in January to host a storytelling talk and workshops for the entire Middle School. Taking place on Middle School Diversity Day, Singh's talk focused on issues of identity, stereotypes, adversity, bullying, the power of our life narratives, and using art as a tool for social change.

Read more about Sikh Captain America Visits and Inspires Friends' Central Middle Schoolers

From the youngest 3-year-old Nursery student to graduating seniors and every grade in between, FCS students are eager to participate, to learn, and to lead. In every division at Friends’ Central, classrooms promote independent thought, the courage to voice individual opinions, and the faith that students will listen to and value one another’s viewpoints. Students are given many opportunities to solve problems in innovative ways, both in the classroom and in the world. In short, Friends’ Central students are prepared to be cutting-edge, civically conscious 21st century leaders.

Read more about Shaping 21st Century Leaders at Friends' Central

Friends' Central is thrilled to announce that Beth Davis Johnson '77 will be returning to FCS to serve as Upper School Principal, effective July 2018. Head of School Craig N. Sellers says, "I could not be happier about Beth's enthusiastic return to her alma mater, and I look forward to creating opportunities for parents, faculty, and students to greet her in the new year."

Read more about Friends' Central Announces New Upper School Principal Beth Davis Johnson '77

An airier footprint, more varied options for seating, an upgraded kitchen, a brand new "food lab," and a cozier, more welcoming facade and foyer are just a few of the many things to which the FCS folks on City Avenue have to look forward when Shallcross Hall reopens its doors in the spring. Check out this progress report on Shallcross Hall by Julian Brenman '20, with photo contributions from Charlie Szwartz '21 and Dorothy Babb '20.

Read more about Shallcross Hall Progress Report: Out with the Old, and Getting Ready for the New

At Friends’ Central, opportunities abound for students and families to give back – to seek out someone who needs a hand and to do what they can, even with the smallest gesture of kindness, to lift that person up. From the youngest Nursery student to graduating seniors, every individual in the Friends’ Central community understands the importance of being stewards of their school, local, and global communities. Students are taught early on that everyone has the potential to advocate for change, to be a force for good in the world, and FCS students are realizing that potential in myriad ways.

Read more about Friends' Central Gives Back – During the Holidays and Year-round

For Henry Terry, rowing is no leisurely activity. A sophomore at Friends’ Central, Terry, a resident of Wayne, is a devoted rower. He rows almost daily in lieu of participating in a traditional, school-sponsored athletic team. Recently, his hard work payed off when he was invited to, and then participated in, the Boston-based Head of the Charles regatta (rowing competition). This regatta, the largest two-day regatta worldwide, assembles the top rowing talent from around the world. 

Read more about FCS Sophomore Henry Terry Competes in National Regatta

Friends' Central is excited to announce the launch of an energy-saving project on both of its Wynnewood campuses, expected to dramatically reduce the School's carbon footprint. Projected to save 38% of energy used annually equal to 9,100 million BTUs, these savings are the equivalent of eliminating the carbon emissions of 3,000,000 miles driven by passenger cars or the carbon absorption of 30,000 trees for 10 years.

Read more about Friends' Central Launches School-Wide Energy Saving Initiatives
Friends' Central enjoys a proud legacy of excellence in the pool. From dominance in both girls' and boys' swimming – 14 consecutive championships for boys' swimming – to a vibrant yearlong aquatics program, swimmers of all ages flock to FCS to learn from outstanding coaches and have the best experience possible in the water. This year, five alumni/ae – Max Bernard '08, Ryan Cassidy '13, Olivia Gillison '10, Victoria Gillison '13, and Mary Stroman '08 – have returned to FCS to continue this legacy of excellence in swimming and to pass along what they learned as swimmers, and as students, at Friends' Central.
Read more about Giving Back – FCS Alums Return to Coach at FCA
In the world of current events, the word global is everywhere. It implies a level of cooperation and interconnectedness that is belied by news of wars, political groups, and neighborhoods where people are so polarized in their approach to issues that they cannot find common ground. Ultimately, our ability to transcend difficult and complex issues hinges on whether or not young people will be defined by their differences. One way to reshape their understanding of difference is to give children the opportunity to collaborate, play, and grow with classmates from different backgrounds.
Read more about The Promise of Diversity at Friends' Central
Friends' Central graduating senior Sydney Bennett is heading to St. Joseph's University in the fall, and as a result of Sydney's intelligence, hard work, confidence, and tenacity, she will attend the school on full scholarship. Sydney is a recipient of the prestigious Ignatian College Connection (ICC) Scholarship, a full-tuition scholarship awarded to just five high-achieving seniors.
Read more about FCS Senior Sydney Bennett Receives Prestigious Full-Tuition Scholarship