Moorestown Friends School

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Moorestown Friends School
Moorestown logo.jpg
Location
110 East Main Street
Moorestown, NJ 08057

Information
Type Independent School
Established 1785
Head of school Laurence (Larry) Van Meter
Faculty 100[1]
Grades Preschool - 12
Enrollment 722 (in PS-12 as of 2013)[1]
Student to teacher ratio 8:1[1]
Color(s) red and blue
Athletics conference Friends Schools League, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association
Nickname Foxes
Yearbook The Cupola
Website

Moorestown Friends School (also known as MFS) is a private, coeducational Quaker day school located at East Main Street and Chester Avenue in Moorestown Township, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2013-2014 school year, the school had an enrollment of 722 students in preschool through grade 12 and 100 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of approximately 8:1.[1]

The school has been accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools since 1991.[2] MFS is also a member of the New Jersey Association of Independent Schools[3] and the Association of Delaware Valley Independent Schools.[4]

Awards and recognition[edit]

During the 1991-92 school year, Moorestown Friends School was awarded the Blue Ribbon School Award of Excellence by the United States Department of Education,[5] the highest award an American school can receive.[6][7]

In 2007, Barbara Quinn Kreider, chair of the science department and chemistry teacher, was recognized as the New Jersey parochial school teacher of the year, after her successful freshmen science program was rated number one in the country.[8]

Historian James C. Scott dedicated his 1990 book Domination and the Arts of Resistance to Moorestown Friends School.

History[edit]

George Fox, founder of Quakerism.

Moorestown Friends School was created in 1785 by members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). The original building stood in what is now Maple Shade Township, New Jersey. It was built before any public school was established in Moorestown. Soon after, another building was erected on the current site, next to the Moorestown Meetinghouse.[9]

In 1827, the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, which the Moorestown Monthly Meeting is a part of, split into the Orthodox and Hicksite meetings. The Orthodox school stayed on the current site under the name "Moorestown Friends Academy", while a Hicksite school called "Moorestown Friends High School" a block away. The two schools recombined under the name "Moorestown Friends School" in 1920 at the current site.

Upper School[edit]

Upper School at MFS includes grades 9 through 12.

The total average SAT score for the Class of 2013 was 1877, made up of Critical Reading 627, Math 619 and Writing 631.[10]

Community Service[edit]

All Upper School students must complete 50 hours of community service, and many participate in service trips to places like New Orleans, the Florida Everglades, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Tanzania. Faculty make an effort to engage students in their local communities, including the city of Philadelphia.[11]

Clubs[edit]

Extracurricular activities at MFS include Agenda Committee (similar to Student Government), Algorithms Club, Animal Awareness Club, Badminton Club, Barbecue Club, Chess Club, Chinese Culture Club, Computer Club, Dance Club, Disney Club, Diversity Committee, Drama Club, Dungeons and Dragons Club, Environmental Club, Film Club, Fellowship of Christians (FOCUS), Future Educators, Gender Equality Forum, Girl Up Club, Literature Club, Martin Luther King, Jr. Club, Model United Nations, Ping Pong Club, Poetry Club, Political Action Club, PRIDE Club (developed from the Gay-Straight Alliance), Service Committee, Sit-Com Club, Ultimate Frisbee Club, Worship Planning.[12]

Middle School[edit]

Middle School at MFS includes grades 5 through 8.

Students take courses in English, Math, Social Studies, Science, and World Languages as well as in non-major courses such as Woodshop, Theater, Art, Music, Physical Education, and Health. Technology is an important component of education at MFS. Faculty advisors meet with Middle School students daily to help them develop effective study skills.[13]

Middle School extracurricular activities include choir, band, theater, and newspaper. Each Middle School grade level has a unique outdoor educational experience.

Lower School[edit]

Lower School at MFS includes preschool through grade 4.

Critical thinking is an important component of the Lower School academic program.

The Quaker testimonies of Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community, Equality, and Stewardship are an integral part of every grade and every classroom. Peaceful conflict resolution and peer mediation are emphasized from a young age.[14]

Beginnings at MFS[edit]

During the 2012-2013 school year, the early childhood program at Moorestown Friends School rebranded itself as "Beginnings at MFS" to stress the importance of preschool, prekindergarten, and kindergarten in a child's development.[15]

"We consider the education of young children to be work of enormous importance. [...] This is a school where you will find an experienced, certified teacher with a Master's degree from the University of Pennsylvania leading a class of three-year-olds. Furthermore, in our early childhood classes, we maintain a ratio of one teacher to just 7 or 8 students."[16]

Academic technology[edit]

Moorestown Friends School has more than 450 computers and laptops throughout the school, consisting of five computer labs, ten laptop carts and three mini-labs. Five of the laptop carts are for general use and two are for the Middle and Upper School Science Department. Mathematics, World Languages, and the Lower School each have their own dedicated computer cart. MFS is predominantly a PC school; however there are several Macs and iPads available for use at every grade level. [17]

The school has a MacBook Pro cart for high-end graphical and media use and an iPad cart as well. They acquired high-quality video production equipment and created an editing studio capable of creating high, near-professional quality video.

Numonic’s interactive whiteboards with mounted projectors are in every classroom. The MFS campus has Wi-Fi accessibility throughout the entire school, and all Upper School students are able to connect with their own personal devices.

The MFS library houses a computer processing center for students to research and prepare written work. The library's online catalog is available via the network throughout the school or from home. Students are also able to check out laptops, iPads and digital cameras from the Library.

Diversity[edit]

Moorestown Friends School is committed to fostering an environment that is both diverse and inclusive and includes this goal in their mission statement. 33% of the student body are students of color. A wide variety of religious faiths are represented as well. In keeping with the Quaker philosophy of honoring each individual, students representing different ethnic, cultural, religious and socioeconomic backgrounds are challenged daily to respect and learn from one another. The Camden Scholars Program has a 35-year tradition of helping to foster a diverse student body at MFS.[18]

The Camden Scholars Program[edit]

The Camden Scholars Program at MFS provides opportunities to students from the Camden City Public Schools in Camden, New Jersey. Recommended by guidance counselors at Camden Middle Schools, candidates apply to Moorestown Friends School, visit classes, and are interviewed.

Once selected by the Camden Scholars Committee and admitted, students receive a scholarship that provides virtually full tuition to MFS. Camden Scholars are encouraged to pursue their interests and develop their talents. Camden Scholars participate in clubs, serve as student leaders, are athletes and perform in plays. They go on overnight retreats and field trips. MFS has a Camden Scholars Coordinator who serves as a liaison to help participants adjust to their new learning environment and sustain a healthy and successful academic and extracurricular schedule. The school's Diversity Coordinator oversees student, employee and curricular diversity efforts throughout the entire school with the aid of a faculty/staff sub-committee.[19]

Quaker values[edit]

Meeting House on the campus of Moorestown Friends School.

MFS is committed to developing students who have learned how to live an "examined life" characterized by a dedication to critical thought, openness to the Spirit, ethical development, and resilience. The entire school community participates in weekly Meeting for Worship, where reflection which fosters responsibility is encouraged. This constant interplay of meditation and action is integral to all school activities and challenges individuals to seek truth continuously through non-violent means and to make a personal commitment to improving themselves, their society and their environment.The school welcomes students of all faiths.[20]

Meeting for Worship[edit]

Each week, the MFS community gathers in the Meetinghouse, built in 1802, for Meeting for Worship. There are separate Meetings for each school division.

Friends believe that each person has within him/herself, with God’s help, the ability to discern truth. Participants use this time to pray, or worship or simply reflect deeply on the world around them, according to their own faith traditions.

Since Friends believe that each person, no matter their age, is able to discern truth all are welcome to speak from their hearts if so moved. It is expected that their words will be listened to from the same deep connection to the Spirit and provide insight for the listeners. When the Meeting for Worship is over, students on the facing benches close the Meeting by shaking hands. At this point everyone is invited to briefly greet their neighbor before settling back into quiet for dismissal.[21]

The Examined Life[edit]

Socrates teaching.

The phrase “Examined Life” is drawn from Socrates’ axiom: “The unexamined life is not worth living.” The goal of such a life is to integrate a tough mind and a tender heart.[22]

Moorestown Friends School's Examined Life Program has four components: Openness to a spiritual life, development and application of personal ethics in the community, critical thinking and evelopment of resilience.

Athletics[edit]

Varsity and Junior Varsity sports include: baseball, basketball, cross country, field hockey, fencing, golf, lacrosse, soccer, tennis and swimming.

Middle School sports offered are baseball, basketball, field hockey, lacrosse, soccer and tennis.[10]

MFS is a member of the Friends Schools League, which was established in 1981. Member schools are Abington Friends School, Academy of the New Church, Friends Central School, Friends Select School, George School, Germantown Friends School, Shipley School and Westtown School. The school is also a member of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, which allows the school's teams to compete for state championships.

In keeping with Quaker philosophy, sportsmanship is stressed in all MFS athletics. The school's mascot is the Fox, named after George Fox, the founder of Quakerism.

The 2007 field hockey team won the Friends Schools League, downing Shipley School 2-0, marking the school's first field hockey league championship since 1985 after title game losses in 1987 and 1994.[23][24]

The boys cross country team were the 2007 South Jersey Non-Public B champions and state runner-up, which was the first cross country title in school history.[25][26]

The girls tennis team won the 2005 South B state sectional championship with a 4-1 win over Sacred Heart High School.[27] The 2007 team reclaimed the title, defeating Bishop Eustace High School 3-2 in the tournament final.[28]

The foil squad of the Moorestown Friends Boys fencing team won three consecutive foil squad state titles from 2004 to 2006.[29] Senior John Gurrieri won the state individual foil title in 2006.[30]

Notable alumni[edit]

Alice Paul, Quaker alumna of Moorestown Friends School and prominent women's rights activist.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Moorestown Friends School, Private School Review. Accessed September 17, 2013.
  2. ^ Moorestown Friends School, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools. Accessed July 24, 2011.
  3. ^ School Search, New Jersey Association of Independent Schools. Accessed July 24, 2011.
  4. ^ Listing of ADVIS member schools, Association of Delaware Valley Independent Schools. Accessed July 24, 2011.
  5. ^ Blue Ribbon Schools Program: Schools Recognized 1982-1983 through 1999-2002 (PDF), United States Department of Education. Accessed March 28, 2011.
  6. ^ "CIBA cited as one of the best by Education Department", Journal Inquirer, November 16, 2006. "The Blue Ribbon award is given only to schools that reach the top 10 percent of their state's testing scores over several years or show significant gains in student achievement. It is considered the highest honor a school can achieve."
  7. ^ Viers Mill School Wins Blue Ribbon; School Scored High on Statewide Test" The Washington Post. September 29, 2005 "For their accomplishments, all three schools this month earned the status of Blue Ribbon School, the highest honor the U.S. Education Department can bestow upon a school."
  8. ^ Camilli, Danielle. "MFS science teacher wins top N.J. honor", Burlington County Times, October 4, 2007. Accessed March 6, 2008.
  9. ^ "About MFS History". Moorestown Friends School. Retrieved 2008-08-16. 
  10. ^ a b Fast Facts, Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 17, 2013.
  11. ^ Moorestown Friends School Academics - Upper School. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  12. ^ Upper School Clubs at Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  13. ^ Middle School at Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  14. ^ Lower School at Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  15. ^ Beginnings at MFS. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  16. ^ Beginnings at MFS: Our Program, Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 17, 2013.
  17. ^ Technology at Moorestown Friends School. Accessed September 8, 2013.
  18. ^ Moorestown Friends School Diversity. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  19. ^ Moorestown Friends School Diversity - Camden Scholars Program. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  20. ^ About MFS: Quaker Values. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  21. ^ Meeting for Worship. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  22. ^ The Examined Life. Accessed September 7, 2013.
  23. ^ Staff."No early exit from playoffs for Holy Cross" m Courier Post, November 3, 2007. Accessed July 24, 2011. "Friends League In the conference tournament championship game Moorestown Friends added another triumph to its already successful season... For the first time in 22 years the Foxes collected the championship by earning a 2-0 win over Shipley, Pa. The last Moorestown Friends tournament title came in 1985."
  24. ^ 2007-08 "Foxes Win Friends League Field Hockey Crown, 2-0 over Shipley", Moorestown Friends School 2007-08 Sports News Archive, November 2, 2007. Accessed July 24, 2011. "The Friends Schools League field hockey title is back in Moorestown for the first time since 1985. Sophomore Heather Moore scored a goal and added an assist to lead the Foxes to a 2-0 victory over two-time defending champion Shipley School.... It was the fourth MFS appearance in a Friends League field hockey championship match. The Foxes lost in the final in 1987 and 1994."
  25. ^ Melohis, Ted. "Denson, Engel help Friends make a little history", Burlington County Times, November 6, 2007. Accessed July 24, 2011. "Denson and Engel helped make history yesterday leading Moorestown Friends to the first South Jersey championship in the program's eight-year history."
  26. ^ "Boys Cross Country Team Finishes Second at State Championship Meet", Moorestown Friends School 2007-08 Sports News Archive, November 12, 2007. Accessed July 24, 2011. "Paced by senior Sean Denson (6th) and sophomore Bob Engel (9th), the Foxes finished second in the NJSIAA State Non-Public B race at Holmdel Park on Saturday. It is the highest finish in school history for a cross country team."
  27. ^ 2005 Girls Team Tennis - South B, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed July 17, 2007.
  28. ^ 2007 Girls Team Tennis - South B, New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association. Accessed October 26, 2007.
  29. ^ Staff. "Foxes foil squad captures third straight state title", Burlington County Times, February 26, 2006. Accessed July 24, 2011. "John Gurrieri, Mario Ponticello and Paul Gray teamed together to win the third consecutive New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association Foil Squad championship for Moorestown Friends."
  30. ^ Staff. "Friends' Gurrieri takes state fencing title", Burlington County Times, March 12, 2006. Accessed July 24, 2011. "John Gurrieri, a Moorestown Friends School senior, won the NJSIAA Individual Fencing Tournament yesterday at Rider University."
  31. ^ Past Recipients of The Alice Paul Merit Award Accessed September 7, 2013.
  32. ^ "Alice Paul Biography.". Lakewood Public Library: Women in History. Retrieved 2006-05-01. 
  33. ^ Seife, Charles. "Spin Doctor: Nobel Physicist Joseph Taylor Takes the "Pulse" of Dying Stars", Princeton Alumni Weekly, October 11, 1995. Accessed October 26, 2007. "As a high school student at Moorestown (N.J.) Friends, Taylor excelled in mathematics, a subject he pursued at Haverford College before switching to physics."

External links[edit]


Coordinates: 39°57′54″N 74°56′29″W / 39.9651°N 74.9415°W / 39.9651; -74.9415