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Germantown Friends School

Student rating 4.8/ 5 by Northwestern University student
31 West Coulter Street Philadephia PA 19144 United States

Academic

Germantown Friends Schoolreview by Northwestern University student. Germantown Friends School (GFS) has an excellent academic reputation and has one of the best academic programs in the area and country. It is a private quaker school founded by the religious society of friends in 1845. It has been at its present location since. Classes are taught by highly qualified teachers who are drawn to the school because of students interests in learning and exploring the world beyond their classrooms. Class sizes are, for the most part, no larger than 18 students and take place from 8:20 to 3:20 in the afternoon. Classes are Germantown Friends are very challenging and can sometimes leave students feeling overworked and extremely stressed. Classes are discussion based so you'll never have a teacher lecture you for quarter of an hour straight. Students share a special bond with teachers and teachers encourage students to come meet with them to go over any school related material. Germantown Friends offers study abroad in Scotland, for 8th grade students, and study abroad in Mexico and France for freshman language students. Germantown Friends offers no Advance Placement courses. This allows faculty members to cover a broad range of material instead of sticking to a rigid guiding. All of Germantown Friends senior classes are considered advanced and ahead of AP courses. Germantown Friends also has whats known as a Junior Project. Students in their junior year receive the month of January off from school to pursue an area of interest. Students have spent time interning with investment bankers to musicians, to training for athletics, to writing for local newspapers. Germantown Friends recently completed construction of a new Gymnasium, renovation of its performing arts center, and is breaking ground on construction of its new science building.

College Counseling

Germantown Friends does an excellent job.… Get the real inside story on college couseling at Germantown Friends School, LOGIN or SIGN UP

Sample insights on college counseling
  • "They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university…"
  • "For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more…"

Admissions - Getting Accepted

GFS is highly selective. I was.… Get insights and advice on admissions to Germantown Friends School, LOGIN or SIGN UP

Sample insights on admissions
  • "Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transfered from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard's were two of the larger feeder schools…"
  • "For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents*the kids speak on the tour. Don't ask their questions for them because their evaluation will be affected by the fact that the guides didn't hear a thing from the kid…"

School Life

Germantown Friends School has excellent facilities. In addition to its three gymnasiums, it is constructing a new green building for the science department set to open in 2009.The cafeteria is located on the lower floor of the main building and serves breakfast and lunch. Most students are satisfied with the quality of the food. Students have the option of ordering food from local stores or restaurants and seniors can leave campus when they don't have a scheduled class. Germantown Friends offers plenty off social events for students. Most social events are planned by student run organizations like Student Advisory Board, or ANNO(yearbook). Safety has been an issue on campus. In the past, students have been taunted or or punched by other students from neighboring high schools. GFS has security guards at all of the schools entrances to ensure student safety. However, GFS prides itself on its "open door" policy and is open and inviting to members of the surrounding community.

While at GFS I participated in many different activities. I played piano in the orchestra from 6th - 12th grades. I took art classes, and photography and sang in the chorus and choir. I traveled to China with the choir my sophomore year and traveled to Mexico to coach baseball my senior year. I played varsity soccer and baseball and was an active member of the Multi-Cultural Students Union, Brothers for Academic and Social Enrichment, FOCUS, Big-Sibs, Tour Guides, and a few more. My senior year, I was the head of the news paper for the student run newspaper, and I was co-financial editor of the yearbook. The athletic and music activities have had the most lasting effect. I've been playing sports and piano since age three so there was always an enrichment in those particular fields of interest.