Devon Preparatory School

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Devon Preparatory School
363 North Valley Forge Road

, ,

United States
Coordinates40°3′19″N 75°25′16″W / 40.05528°N 75.42111°W / 40.05528; -75.42111Coordinates: 40°3′19″N 75°25′16″W / 40.05528°N 75.42111°W / 40.05528; -75.42111
MottoA Foundation for Success
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic;
209 (Upper School)
59 (Middle School) (2018)
Average class size12
Student to teacher ratio6:1
Campus size20 acres (81,000 m2)
Color(s)Blue and Gold         
SloganRoll Tide!
Athletics conferencePhiladelphia Catholic League
Team nameTide
AccreditationMiddle States Association of Colleges and Schools[1]
PublicationDevon Prep Tidlings
NewspaperThe Devon Dialogue
YearbookThe Calasanctian
Tuition$25,400 (Upper School)
$22,400 (Middle School)
HeadmasterRev. Francisco Aisa, Sch.P.
ChaplainRev. Javier Renteria, Sch.P
Head of Upper SchoolMark Aquilante '96
Athletics DirectorJason Fisher

Devon Preparatory School is a private, Catholic college preparatory school in Devon, Pennsylvania, founded in 1956 by the Piarist fathers. It is an all-boys school, divided into a middle school (grades 6–8) and an upper school (grades 9–12), both located on the same campus of 20 acres (81,000 m2). The school operates independently under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Campus history[edit]

The site where the Devon Preparatory School was originally owned by Philadelphia publisher,[2] art collector,[3] and socialite[4] Dr. Charles Matthew Lea, who built his mansion in 1913 that was later to become Calasanctus Hall. Lea, son of historian Henry Charles Lea, inherited his fortune from the Lea & Febiger publishing firm, the oldest publishing company in the United States (1785–1990).[2] The firm's best known title was the American edition of Gray's Anatomy, which they began publishing in 1859. The original 20-acre (81,000 m2) tract on the east side of Valley Forge Road was expanded in 1920, with the purchase of an additional 83 acres (340,000 m2). This consolidated property was known as Westthorpe Farm.

The main entrance to Westthorpe Farm was at the intersection of Conestoga Road, Valley Forge Road and Hunters Lane where large stone pillars still stand. A number of stone pillars, that originally formed a southern fence line, remains partially in place along West Conestoga and Upper Gulph Roads. The current entrance to Devon Preparatory School, on Valley Forge Road, was the service entrance to the mansion. An outbuilding from Westthorpe Farm still stands northeast of the intersection of Upper Gulph and Hunters Lane.

The twenty-five room Westthorpe mansion,[5] designed by Brockie & Hastings,[6] was the home of Charles M. Lea until he died in 1927. His widow, Charlotte Augusta Lea, remained at the mansion until her death in 1945.

The property was then sold to Alexander Shand, a developer, who built one of the first post-World War II developments of homes known as the Shand Tract, on Steeplechase Road and Hunters Lane. Shand sold the mansion to Dr. Joseph Lerner, who had hoped to make it a psychiatric hospital. Because of neighborhood opposition to his project, Lerner sold the property to the Piarist Fathers in 1955.


All of Devon Prep's athletic teams compete in the Philadelphia Catholic League (12 teams).

  • Fall: Cross Country, Soccer (Varsity, Junior Varsity and Freshmen), Golf (Varsity and Junior Varsity) and Crew.
  • Winter: Basketball (Varsity, Junior Varsity and Freshmen), Indoor Track, Bowling, Squash, and Swimming.
  • Spring: Baseball (Varsity and Junior Varsity), Lacrosse, Track and Field, Tennis, and Crew.

Clubs and activities[edit]

Devon Prep has over 20 different extracurricular activity groups.[7] Some of them include: Mock Trial, Model United Nations, Science Olympiad, Diplomacy Club, Film Club, German-American Exchange Program, Devon Dialogue (newspaper), Calasanctian (yearbook), Ballroom Dance, Art Club, Debate Club, Campus Ministry, Chess Club, Ping-Pong Club, Computer Club, and Frisbee Club. There is an elected Student Council, honor societies, and an Academic Challenge Team. Musical groups for students include Jazz Band, Choral Tide and Rip Tide. There is an annual Fall Drama and Spring Musical.

Summer Enrichment Program[edit]

In the summer, Devon Prep hosts a Summer Enrichment Program. Throughout the two sessions students participate in sports and dramatic arts camps as well as various other courses. They attend classes including algebra readiness, digital photography, painting and sculpting, video production, study skills, web building, and history explorations. The sports camps include baseball, soccer, track, golf and basketball.

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Robert Ambrogi ’67 - Vice President of School Management at International School Services, former Director of the American International School of Johannesburg and former Superintendent of the International School of Islamabad, Pakistan and former Director at American International School of Lisbon
  • Dr. Anthony Coletta ’71 - Executive Vice President/Chief Medical Officer at Holy Redeemer Health System, former General Surgeon/Partner at Surgical Specialists, Inc. Dr. Coletta was a pioneer in the development of laparoscopic surgery. He performed the first laparoscopic appendectomy in the Philadelphia region in May, 1990 and the first laparoscopic colon resection in September of that same year.
  • Mark Malseed ’93 - co-author of The Google Story and a named collaborator, with author Bob Woodward, on the #1 New York Times non-fiction bestsellers Plan of Attack and Bush at War.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ MSA-CSS. "MSA-Commission on Secondary Schools". Archived from the original on 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2009-05-23.
  2. ^ a b "Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society History Quarterly Digital Archives [1] April 1999 Volume 37 Number 2, Pages 63–70"
  3. ^ Pearson, Elizabeth T."The Charles M. Lea Collection""The Philadelphia Museum of Art" 1928
  4. ^ "Summer Social Register 1920 Philadelphia"
  5. ^ "Henry Charles Lea Papers: Memorabilia and Family Papers Boxes 187 and 188" "The University of Pennsylvania Rare Book and Manuscript Library"
  6. ^ "Perspective of County House, Devon, Penna"
  7. ^ "Extracurricular Activities - Devon Preparatory School". Retrieved 11 February 2018.

External links[edit]