Westfield Friends School

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Westfield Friends School
Location
2201 Riverton Rd
Cinnaminson, NJ 08077
Information
Type Independent School
Established 1788[1]
Head of school Jon Hall
Faculty 17[2]
Grades PreK - 8
Enrollment 140[2]
Student to teacher ratio 10:1[2]
Color(s) Garnet and Blue
Website

Westfield Friends School (also known as WFS) is a private, coeducational Quaker day school located in Cinnaminson, New Jersey, United States. Westfield Friends School has been operated under the care of the Westfield Friends Meeting for all of its history. From its commencement in 1785, under the care of Abraham Warrington, the school has encouraged "everyone of good character" to join its community. The care relationship between the Meeting and the School has shaped both communities for all of these years and remains a precious stewardship and trust.

Westfield Friends School is situated on a peaceful ​8 12-acre campus on Riverton Road in Cinnaminson, New Jersey. WFS offers students a Quaker values-based education with a challenging academic curriculum, as well as classes in visual arts, music, library, computer instruction, health, world languages (Spanish and Latin), and physical education. The Quaker SPICES (the Quaker testimonies of Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community, Equality, and Stewardship)[3] are an integral part of every grade and every classroom.

History[edit]

In 1785 land on Riverton Road valued at "Six Pounds, Hard Money" was bought by Westfield Friends Meeting. Once part of the land owned by Thomas Lippincott - this was called his "West Field" - hence, the name which remains today.[4]

In 1788, the Monthly Meeting appointed a committee to visit and have the oversight of a school kept by Abraham Warrington. This school was probably kept in his own home near Fork Landing.[5]

Historical sketch: Westfield Friends Meeting-house (by Nathan H. Conrow). Exact publication date is unknown.

During the months of June and July, 1791, Abraham Warrington proposed purchasing "a lot of ground off of the upper corner of Samuel Shute’s lands for erecting a school house." The Meeting records further show that this lot was purchased from Samuel Shute on Seventh month 27th, 1791 and doubtless the school house was erected shortly afterwards. This school stood on or very near the site of the present brick school house (Pre-K building) on Riverton Road.[6]

Historical sketch: Westfield Friends Meeting site map (by Nathan H. Conrow). Exact publication date is unknown.

The first school house was built of stone around 1790.[7] In 1799 more land was acquired by Westfield Friends Meeting.[4] This building was torn down in 1840 and the material used in the construction of the foundation walls of the present larger brick one.[7] The current school building dates from 1840 and has been enlarged five times. Monies realized from the sale of additional land were used to construct a new brick meeting house in 1860. Completion was April 13, 1860. This building is now the Pre-Kindergarten annex. With the exception of three years from 1905-1907, the school has been continually active since 1795.[4]

Long-time head-of-school, William C. Probsting, retired in 2013 after nearly four decades at WFS.[8]

Heads of School[edit]

  • Jon Hall (2016-present)
  • Peter Pearson
  • William C. Probsting
  • Helen Marshall

Early Teachers[edit]

  • William Parry
  • Benjamin Hallowell (1818-?)
  • Charlotte Brewster (1882-1884)[5]
  • Abbie Evans (1879-1882)[5]
  • Helen Marshall (1877-1883/4/5)[5]

About WFS[edit]

As of the 2014-2015 school year, the school had an enrollment of 144 students in Pre-K through grade 8 and 14 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of approximately 10:1. The school has an early learning program with full-day Pre-Kindergarten and full-day Kindergarten, a lower school with grades one to five, and a middle school with grades six through eight.

Clubs[edit]

Extracurricular activities at WFS include sports (field hockey, soccer, and track), community service projects, instrumental music, Chinese language, visual arts, robotics, and drama classes in partnership with the Moorestown Theater Company.[9]

Academic technology[edit]

Westfield Friends School has more than 100 computers and laptops (Chromebooks) throughout the school, consisting of a computer lab, a laptop cart, and technology in every classroom. Additionally, many classrooms are equipped with Mimio interactive whiteboard technology to engage learners.

The WFS campus has Wi-Fi accessibility throughout the entire school, and all Eighth Grade students are able to connect with their own personal devices.

The newly refurbished WFS 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 and digital cameras from the Library.

Meeting for Worship[edit]

Each week, the WFS community gathers in the Meetinghouse for Meeting for Worship. 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.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Westfield Friends School - About Us". Accessed June 16, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "Westfield Friends School Profile", Private School Review. Accessed June 17, 2015.
  3. ^ "Quaker Testimonies", Quakers in the World. Accessed June 17, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c "Westfield Friends Meeting History". Accessed June 17, 2015.
  5. ^ a b c d "Historical sketches of Westfield Meeting and School", Conrow, Nathan H. Accessed June 18, 2015.
  6. ^ "Moorestown and Her Neighbors", Chapter XIV Westfield and Neighborhood. Accessed June 18, 2015.
  7. ^ a b "Friends' Intelligencer, Volume 63 - Google Books", page 797. Accessed June 18, 2015.
  8. ^ "After 225 years, Westfield Friends School toots its own horn", Philly.com. Accessed June 16, 2015.
  9. ^ "Westfield Friends School - Quick Facts". Accessed June 17, 2015.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°59′41″N 74°59′30″W / 39.994810°N 74.991775°W / 39.994810; -74.991775