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Welcome Message from the Executive Director

Whether you are a Friends school faculty member in search of a program or resource to support your work, or a tried and true friend of Friends education, we’re glad you are here. Welcome!

Friends Council on Education is the only national association of Quaker schools in our country. Our organization plays a vital and important role for heads, administrators and teachers working in Quaker schools today. Friends Council serves as both the convener and the conveyor for 78 Friends schools in seven different regions of the United States. Our role is to both bring schools together to share resources and best practices, and to distribute programming and resources to schools as needed.

Friends schools may vary in size, geographical location, and even in Quaker nature; yet we share a common commitment to Quaker principles and practices and to educating children to become the moral citizens William Penn envisioned when he started the first Quaker schools over 328 years ago.

Indeed, Friends Schools teach young people, from all walks of life, habits of heart and mind, so that they may go forth to create a more just and peaceful world.

This is why former Presidents of the United States have chosen to send their children to Friends schools. This is why Friends school alumnae go on to live lives of public purpose and make a difference in today’s world. This is why, as our country  strives to navigate this challenging time in history, Quaker schools and what they have to offer is needed more than ever.

As the Executive Director of Friends Council on Education, I am in the unique position of having the bird’s eye view of Friends education and the 78 schools that make up Friends Council on Education. Last year I visited close to half of the schools in our network and this year I am well on my way to doing the same. Each time I visit a Friends school, I walk away feeling grateful for our long history of Quaker education, excited by the deep and spiritual work taking place in our schools, and inspired to find new and different ways of working together.

As you go about your life today, next week and next month, I ask you to consider the following:

What role has Quaker education played in your life or in the lives of those you know and love?

How might Friends schools grow stronger together and play a critical role in the future of young people and in the future of our country?

What can you do today to further the future of Friends education and Quaker schools?

I invite you to think on these questions and share your thinking with us.

Drew Smith
Executive Director
Friends Council on Education

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