As the days grew warmer this spring, Friends School found creative ways to practice stewardship. Students celebrated Earth Day with gardening and service projects around campus, conducted scientific observations of wildlife at the school pond, and created pieces of art that will make our building even more inviting. Children and their families participated in the first-ever SCFS #GetOutside Challenge to benefit the Scholarship Fund; in total, friends ran, walked, hiked, biked, and scooted over 1,000 miles in just two weeks. It truly has been a season of big outdoor energy, bearing witness to all the different ways one can practice what Quakers call right relationship with the earth.
Read more about this good work by taking a look through the Spring 2021 issue of A Friendly Voice.
#GetOutside with Friends School!
The SCFS “Get Outside” Challenge is a brand new event for our community. In honor of Earth Day, we invite friends to get out into the natural world - running, walking, hiking, biking - from Saturday, April 24 through Sunday, May 9. Participants will gather pledges, get outside, and log their miles to see how far we can go together. In light of ongoing pandemic conditions, this will take place in lieu of the Fun Fair, an event that traditionally offers a delightful day of games, snacks, activities, and live music for our school to enjoy together with folks from the wider State College community.
There are so many ways to take on this challenge: families can organize a weekend hike; individuals can plan to go on walks or jogs; a class can work together to set a goal for how many total miles they hope to go; parents can organize a walk, run, or scoot for their pod at a local park. We encourage all friends to choose their favorite way to get outside!
How can I participate?
As an extra-fun bonus, Chen’s Mongolian Buffet will be hosting a #FriendsAtChens weekend on May 8th and 9th, the final days of the “Get Outside” Challenge. All you have to do is place an order and identify that you are supporting SCFS, and our friends at Chen’s will donate a percentage of those profits to SCFS. This applies to take-out orders, too! All proceeds from these events will benefit the SCFS Scholarship Fund.
We hope that friends will feel led to participate, invite others to join in, get outside and go farther together. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Annie Boggess, Director of Development and Alumni Relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to make a gift towards scholarships at Friends School but do not plan to participate in the “Get Outside” Challenge, friends are encouraged to make a donation to SCFS through Centre Gives on May 11 and 12. With the goal of supporting nonprofits throughout Centre County, the Centre Foundation has hosted this 36-hour online giving event for the past ten years. Centre Gives is an exciting opportunity for community members to amplify their impact and make Quaker education more accessible for all. Click here for more information about Centre Gives, and stay tuned for more details about how to leverage your gift to the SCFS Scholarship Fund.
Thank you for your support!
State College Friends School is seeking an Interim Head of School for the 2021-2022 school year to begin on July 1. Located in scenic central Pennsylvania just minutes away from Penn State University, SCFS is an independent Pre-K through 8th grade school that serves students from several surrounding counties. For the past 40 years, State College Friends School has offered a vigorous educational program grounded in the Quaker testimonies of equality, integrity, and stewardship. These values shape an academically stimulating and inclusive school community in which our students can develop a sense of confidence and agency in their world.In the face of the pandemic, the SCFS community has approached the 2020-2021 school year with creativity, flexibility, and a commitment to health and safety while maintaining an interdisciplinary, child-centered curriculum. Teachers and students have successfully conducted in-person learning this year through a combination of outdoor education, upgrades to the school’s physical plant, classroom reconfigurations, and innovative pedagogy.
RESPONSIBILITIES AND QUALIFICATIONS
The Interim Head of School will oversee school operations for approximately 100 students in seven multi-grade classrooms guided by seven lead teachers, several assistant teachers, three administrative staff and two part-time staff. They will be responsible for guiding the work of faculty and staff, advancement of the school through enrollment and development efforts, ensuring the upkeep of the school building and grounds, and strengthening the school’s relationships with members of the wider State College community.
A successful candidate will bring experience in progressive education at the primary and intermediate levels in addition to effective administrative and managerial skills. The ability to work with faculty and staff collaboratively and build mutual trust and respect with the community will be crucial to the Interim Head of School’s work. While familiarity with Quakerism is preferred, all applicants should be willing to embrace, embody and clearly communicate the Quaker testimonies which are at the heart of the school.
Applicants should submit materials as a single PDF file to email@example.com. A complete application will include all of the following:
Applicants may also send materials to the following mailing address, though this is not required:
State College Friends School
Attn: Interim HOS Search Committee
1900 University Drive
State College, PA 16801
Questions about the search process should be directed via email to Seth Blumsack, Clerk of the Search Committee, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
State College Friends School is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
One of the central tenets of our work at State College Friends School is teaching students how to build peace. This can look like everything from practicing sincere apologies to analyzing social movement tactics from United States history. Children of all ages learn that they have the agency and the responsibility to actively engage in resolving interpersonal conflicts and, one day, finding ways to address the systems of oppression that harm so many. As you look through this issue of A Friendly Voice, we invite you to reflect upon the question, “What does peace mean to you?”
We appreciate you taking the time to read about the good work that is happening at our school. If any questions or reflections arise, feel free to share them by replying to this email. If you would like to support Friends School’s mission nurturing tomorrow’s peacebuilders, please consider making a gift to the Annual Fund by clicking here.
If you would like to receive a hard copy of future issues of A Friendly Voice, please email Annie Boggess at aboggess@scfriends.
Over one hundred members of the Friends School community gathered on Saturday, February 27 for the SCFS Virtual Winter Gathering: Lighting the Way. The evening began with an invitation for each of the attendees to light a candle in their respective homes. Quakers believe that this inner light makes each human precious and unique - and connects us all to the collective good. Friends enjoyed homemade meals prepared by a group a talented parent chefs, took advantage of the opportunity to chat and connect in smaller breakout rooms, then came together to enjoy live music from SCFS alumna Laura Boswell and alumni parents Molly Countermine and Rene Witzke. The online auction was open for bidding all weekend, offering everything from kombucha-making classes to original artwork to Mexican coffee. The live event closed with the singing of "As We Leave this Friendly Place," a Friends School classic.
Thanks to the love and effort effort of the whole Friends School community, we raised $20, 336.99 for the SCFS Scholarship Fund. Whether you cooked or purchased a delicious meal, attended the live event, donated or bid on auction items, or made a direct contribution to the Scholarship Fund, you helped make this possible. Together, our light shines brighter.
State College Friends School's summer camp program has always been a favorite with families who want a well-balanced day of physical activity, imaginative play, and creative expression for children in Pre-K through middle school. Beginning June 2020 the Pre-K camp program (Wee Friends) will offer a half-day session from 8:30 - Noon, a full-day session from 8:30 to 3:30, and after care until 5:30 p.m.
Each themed week will feature story time, creative arts, free-choice centers, outdoor games and playground time,
and music. Registration is available at our free Winter Play Day, this Saturday, February 15th from 9:30 - Noon or at the Summer Youth Fair.
June 15-19: Fun in the Sun! ($100/week-1/2 day; $185/week-full day)
June 22-26: Under the Sea ($100/week-1/2 day; $185/week-full day)
June 29-July 2: One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish ($80/week-1/2 day; $148/week-full day)
NO CAMP JULY 3RD
July 6-10: Creative Campers ($100/week-1/2 day; $185/week-full day)
July 27-31: Once Upon a Time ($100/week-1/2 day; $185/week-full day)
Students in Teacher Michelle and Gwen's K/1 classroom were learning sign language when Michael Petrine and Jeffrey Barnes came to the school with a donation from BB&T Bank to help fund scholarships. The students gleefully shouted, "thank you!" and signed the letters B B T. They were very proud of themselves for their cleverness.
When 1st grade student Mari read the dollar amount ($10,000), written on the check, the room fell momentarily silent until several classmates took in a breath and exhaled with a big "ahhhh. . ." State College Friends School offers a flexible tuition to families interested in a Quaker education, grounded in the testimonies of simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality, and stewardship. The generous contribution from BB&T helps to make this financial assistance possible. For more information, contact Lori Pacchioli, director of advancement for Friends School.
Friends Middle School Participates in State College Multi Cultural Diversity Fair with newly-digitized mural.
With an eye for proportion and a knack for managing extraordinary photography and art, local photographer Michael Black and local artist William Snyder III worked for several months to disassemble, digitize, preserve, and reassemble a 6 foot by 17 foot student-created piece of art with a message. Saturday, September 28th, Head of School Donnan Stoicovy and several middle school students who worked on the mural will unveil it for its first public viewing.
With grant funding from the Southern Poverty Law Center and Friends Council On Education, along with independent funds raised by Middle School teacher Bailey Kellermann, the mural will be shared with other interested organizations or institutions around the country.
Leading up to the school's Martin Luther King Jr. Day recognition last January, Middle School Teacher Bailey Kellermann and 11 of her students came up with an idea to create a mural, depicting the civil rights leader’s Birmingham, Alabama, jail mugshot. What started out as a painting project on large bulletin board paper kept evolving as the students and Kellermann continued to talk.
The students decided to add graphic details representing information about the Black Lives Matter movement, lynchings and police killings in the United States — all topics which had been part of classroom conversations in social studies.
Titled Until All of Us Are Free, students shared the work of creating Dr. King’s portrait, researching the names of black individuals fatally shot by police in 2017, making 3,446 white paint thumbprints and 223 red thumbprints, representing the black individuals (reported) lynched in the United States since 1882 and the number of black people who were fatally shot by police in 2017.
When the large tempura paint and paper artwork was installed on the school lobby bulletin board, it immediately received attention from parents, students, and visitors to the school. The size alone resulted in curiosity. Students of all ages learned about the work in ways that were developmentally appropriate.
As attention grew around the content and creativity, so did interest from outside groups in having the piece on loan. That's where Michael Black and William Smith lll came into the conversation. The grant and independent fundraising made it possible to have the piece reproduced in its entirety and now it can be shared with others.
U.S. Secretary of Education Names State College Friends School 2019 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School
The U.S. Department of Education has named State College Friends School as one of 35 schools among the 2019 U.S.Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools award honorees. The federal department named Friends School as a community that explores social justice and environmental sustainability the Quaker way.
While there were more than twenty illustrations presented in the award application of the ways in which Friends School participates in stewardship and environmental sustainability such as use of solar panels and all-school recycling, several highlights were acknowledged:
D. Wayne Bender, director for the Hardwood Development Council of the PA Department of Agriculture commented, “After a one day visit to this school this spring I know this is a well deserved honor.” Students had an opportunity to participate in an interactive program with Bender earlier this year when he visited the school with the PA Woodmobile, sponsored by the PA Hardwoods Council. They learned about soft and hard woods, sustainable use of native trees, the challenges of managing invasive species and insects.
Across the country, 35 schools, 14 districts, and four postsecondary institutions are being honored for their innovative efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, improve health and wellness, and ensure effective sustainability education.
The honorees were named from a pool of candidates nominated by 28 states. The selectees include 25 public schools, including three magnet schools and two charter schools, as well as 10 nonpublic schools. Thirty-six percent of the 2019 honorees serve a disadvantaged student body.
The list of all selected schools, districts, colleges, and universities, as well as their nomination packages, can be found here. A report with highlights on the 53 honorees can be found here. More information on the federal recognition award can be found here.
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IRS notice for 501 C3 non-profit organizations: State College Friends School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.