Education in Philadelphia

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Education in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has a rich and storied history. This history began with Benjamin Franklin's founding of the University of Pennsylvania as European styled school and America's first university. Today's Philadelphia region is home to nearly 300,000 college students, numerous private and parochial secondary schools, and the 8th largest school district in the country.

Public schools system: School District of Philadelphia[edit]

Philadelphia is served by the School District of Philadelphia, which operates 242 of the city's public schools, including 163 elementary schools, 23 middle schools, and 56 high schools.

The school district is governed by the nine-member Board of education, appointed by the Mayor of Philadelphia. This Board of Education replaced the previous School Reform Commission in 2018.[1]

There are 84 independently operated charter schools, which make up the remainder of the public schools in Philadelphia. Charter schools are authorized by the School District of Philadelphia, and are accountable to it.

Parochial schools[edit]

Philadelphia is home to the most extensive Catholic education system in the United States.[citation needed] Along with hundreds of parish-based elementary schools, there are also twelve Catholic high schools within the city ranging from Archdiocesan high schools to private Catholic high schools. All of the Catholic schools are affiliated with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Private schools[edit]

The French International School of Philadelphia, the French international school serving the Philadelphia area, is in nearby Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania.

Friends Schools League[edit]

The Friends' Schools League (FSL) is an athletic league made up of student athletes from several private high schools in the Philadelphia area in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. As the league's name suggests, it consists primarily of Quaker schools, though in recent years several other schools have become part of the league as well.[3]

Member schools[edit]

Member schools include:

Miscellaneous weekend education[edit]

The Japanese Language School of Philadelphia (JLSP, フィラデルフィア日本語補習授業校 Firaderufia Nihongo Hoshū Jugyō Kō), a supplementary Japanese school, holds its classes, intended for Japanese nationals and Japanese Americans, at the Friends Central School (FCS) in nearby Wynnewood.[4][5]

Higher education[edit]

Philadelphia is one of the largest college towns in the U.S., with over 120,000 college and university students enrolled within the city limits and nearly 300,000 in the metropolitan area.

Colleges and Universities within the city:

Colleges and universities near Philadelphia include:


  1. ^ "What We Do". The School District of Philadelphia. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Friends Schools League". Retrieved 4 April 2012.
  4. ^ "Directions Archived 2015-04-02 at the Wayback Machine." Japanese Language School of Philadelphia. Retrieved on March 30, 2014. "The Japanese Language School of Philadelphia utilizes the campus of: Friends Central School 1101 City Avenue, Wynnewood, PA"
  5. ^ "Community Profile Archived 2015-02-02 at the Wayback Machine." Lower Merion Township. Retrieved on April 30, 2014. (contains maps of Lower Merion).