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explore our CAMPUS

What's cool about our campus is that it's spread out over seven acres in Philadelphia's historic neighborhood of Germantown. The buildings are an eclectic mix of old and new, a unique look and feel more consistent with a college campus. With three gyms, three auditoriums, a student center, numerous open, green spaces and nine classroom buildings, it's a place worthy of adoration and exploration. The Meetinghouse, at the center of it all, provides a beautiful and spiritual focal point.

1. Main Building 2. Meetinghouse 3. Sharpless 4. Hargroves 5. Wade Science Center 6. Alumni Building 7. Admissions 8. Living Graveyard 9. Dead Graveyard 10. Loeb Performing Arts Center 11. Smith Gym 12. Cary Building 13. Friends Free Library 14. Field House 15. Scattergood Gym

we have deep roots in this place

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The Pillars of A

Quaker Education

At GFS, students and teachers gather in Meeting for Worship once each week. This is a time for shared, silent contemplation. Anyone who feels moved to speak may rise and do so. It is a simple formula, and can be a remarkably powerful experience.In these days of constant connectivity, the ability and opportunity to sit in silence have special value. Meeting for Worship is a cornerstone of the GFS culture that many come to cherish throughout their lives.

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speak the truth

We strive to deal fairly, equally and honestly with everyone. We aim to do as we say, reflecting our beliefs in our actions. even when it is inconvenient or challenging, we stand by our convictions, striving to lead lives of integrity.

Shine Together

We are all blessed with remarkable gifts. We are equally qualified to seek truth and to hear the voice of God. Every person deserves equal respect. For these reasons, we work against prejudice and discrimination and for equality.

stay connected

"Alone we can do little; together we can do so much."* We know there is strength in cooperation and wisdom to be found when many perspectives come together. We believe in the power of community.*
The words of Helen Keller.

keep it simple

In every way we can, we try to minimize the distractions that can draw our attention from the important things in life. This means not becoming overwhelmed by the busyness of daily routine. It means seeking balance. It means embracing simplicity.

care for all

This planet we inhabit, the talents we've been given, the community of which we are a part- all hold remarkable value. We must be responsible, imaginative and proactive in protecting these gifts and caring for the world and people around us. We must exercise good stewardship.

promote peace

We believe each life is precious and unique. We stand against war and violence and work to eliminate their root causes, including ignorance, racism, hatred and oppression. We are committed to creating peace.

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Basketball for Books
Basketball for Books

The idea for the Reach Out and Read Basketball Tournament was hatched six years ago on—not surprisingly—the basketball court. During the "run," an early-morning pick-up game that has existed at Germantown Friends School for decades, Mark Tucker, parent of three GFS graduates, and Hans Kersten, a pediatrician at St. Christopher's Hospital for Children in North Philadelphia, got to talking, and Kersten mentioned the hospital's Reach Out and Read program, a national nonprofit organization that trains pediatricians and nurse practitioners in early literacy practices and gives new books to children up to age five at their annual well visits. Since St. Chris's joined the program in 2001, it has gifted more than 800,000 books and provided literacy guidance to 300,000-plus families; however, the hospital needed funding in order to stay involved. Kersten's colleague, pediatrician Dan Taylor (GFS Class of 1982), is also a member of the morning "run," so suffice it to say that the creation of a basketball tournament in support of this critical literacy initiative was a slam dunk.

"This collaboration between basketball players, child advocates, GFS alumni, and GFS administration has been, and continues to be, the perfect mixture of motivated, empathetic individuals, who put the underserved community surrounding St. Christopher's at the heart of this event," says Taylor. 

Since its inception in 2014, the tournament has raised $240,000 for Reach Out and Read, and purchased more than 87,000 books for St. Chris's. The event has evolved from one gym, eight teams, and 60 players to three gyms, 16 teams, and more than 150 players vying for the championship in a round-robin format. Most participants hail from Philadelphia and the surrounding areas, including many from St. Chris and the GFS community, but players have traveled from as far away as Syracuse, NY, and North Virginia to compete in the tournament. 

"It's a win-win situation for all involved. An amazing, fun-filled, competitive event that brings GFS alumni, friends, and family together, with the underlying philosophy that all children in Philadelphia, no matter their zip code, deserve a shot at early childhood education and future school success," says Tucker, former GFS Head Basketball Coach and co-founder of the event. "I understand the science behind the Reach Out and Read Program in terms of advanced early development, but it's the smiling faces on the children that leave St. Chris, with book in hand, that makes it all worth it."

The players that come to the GFS "run" each week are a diverse group—physicians, lawyers, SEPTA workers, real estate developers, people from all areas and backgrounds. Yet they bond over their common love of basketball and their understanding of the importance and immediacy of supporting children in under-resourced areas of Philadelphia. "We know that many of the children surrounding St. Chris live in homes without books, and this inequity does not sit well with any of us," Taylor shares. 

The Sixth Annual Reach Out and Read Tournament will take place on Saturday, October 26, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Germantown Friends School (31 W. Coulter Street, Philadelphia, 19144). Each participating team has fundraising goals, with a majority of the funding coming from individual and corporate donors. Every dollar raised goes directly to Reach Out and Read. To learn more about the tournament and the program at St. Christopher's (and how to get involved), go to reachoutandreadbasketball.wordpress.com. 


Photo caption: St. Christopher's doctors Dan Taylor '82 (left) and Hans Kersten (middle, with arms up), co-founders of the Reach Out and Read Basketball Tournament at Germantown Friends School, on the court in 2018.