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175th Anniversary

Germantown Friends School 

Celebrating our creative community, highlighting our storied history, and looking toward our future.

Highlighting Our History

1881

A photo of the whole school, including faculty and staff.

GFS Giving Day
Show Your Love for GFS

Giving Day

Held the week of Valentine's Day each year, Giving Day is a special opportunity for our community to come together in fun and creative ways, and contribute to GFS through the Annual Fund.

Acquiring Athletic Fields

1920

The first parcel of Fields is acquired, an important step in the growth of campus and the connection between athletics and academics.

Supporting Science Innovation

2009

The game-changing, Gold LEED-certified Wade Science Center opens as the result of a $30 million campaign.

A New Head of School

1935

Marjorie Hardy, the new head of the GFS Primary School, emphasizes the importance of play in academic and social growth.

Expanding Early Childhood

2017

GFS extends its Early Childhood experience to Center City Philadelphia.

Championing Theatre Education

1918

Teacher Irvin Poley promotes the value of theatre in education, ushering in a new source of knowledge and joy.

Advocating for Athletics and Wellness

1980

Scattergood Gym is built to support a growing athletic and wellness program. 

Breadcrumbs

175th Anniversary Celebration

Celebrating 175 Years of Quaker Education

We were delighted to commemorate our 175th anniversary—a year of celebrations that highlighted our school’s history and milestones, recognized our remarkable community, and launched us toward a bright and purposeful future guided by our strategic vision.

Read a letter from Head of School Dana Weeks to learn more about the celebration.

Attend an Event

6ABC anchor Nydia Han

A Virtual 175th Celebration!

May 15, 2021


The culminating celebration of the year was held on May 15, 2021. Emceed by GFS parent and 6ABC anchor Nydia Han, we  gathered for a virtual “evening in” fundraiser for scholarship at GFS. In addition to enjoying the musical talents of the Alex Levin Trio, Maya Keren, and G. Love, we heard a few exciting surprise announcements! 

Music Showcase

May 1, 2021, 6:30 p.m.

We enjoyed the musical talents of our students and other members of our community on May 1, 2021. Lower School music teachers Renee Warnick and Vicki Spaeth Nyce hosted a lively sing-a-long for our young friends. Then, we heard tunes from the Deb Callahan Band—a blues-soul band featuring GFS parents Callahan and Allen James, as well as our incredible Middle and Upper School musicians, including the GFS Orchestra, Jazz Ensembles, World Percussion, Chamber Ensembles, and more! 

Alumni Week(end)

May 12–16, 2021

Virtual plans with special reunion activities were held for classes with years ending in '0, '1, '5, and '6. There were panel discussions, workshops, and celebrations held all week long, concluding with the 175th Anniversary Celebration. 

Learn more about our latest Alumni Week(end) below!

 



GFS History: A Timeline

175th Anniversary History Series

Former GFS history teacher Bill Koons began a history of the school in 1989. Building on his work, Tim Wood and Kate Stover, archivists and former GFS parents, brought these stories to our community this year. Read more about the project here.

As you read these seven installments, you will walk through more than a hundred years of Germantown Friends School history. Along the way, you will discover how and why the school was founded, meet the people at the heart of the school, witness the evolving campus, become more familiar with curricular advances, and learn how the school responded to local and national challenges.  Stories, analysis, photos, and rich details will make the history of the school from 1845-1970 come alive.

Please enjoy the newest feature "Master Stanley," about Stanley Yarnall, one of the most influential figures in GFS history.

Anniversary Event News

GFS Trivia

DID YOU KNOW?

The announcement for GFS' opening was published in the Quaker publication, The Friend, in 1845.