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Frankford Friends School

Early Childhood Center at Fishtown

Frankford Friends is a diverse, equitable, inclusive, and just learning environment, welcoming students and families from all backgrounds and identities to our school. We best serve children who enthusiastically accept challenges, love to learn, and who positively contribute to the classroom and school community in a variety of ways.

We believe that students learn best in an educational environment that nurtures the whole child, promotes learning through inquiry, cultivates a strong sense of community, emphasizes social justice and peace education, and fosters mindfulness and reflection.

Woodcock Designs, Architect Rendering, 2023

Our Guiding Principles
  • See the Light in oneself and others
  • Find peaceful solutions to conflict
  • Treat others with kindness and respect
  • Support community and collaboration
  • Respect the natural world
  • Practice empathy and compassion
  • Create a better world
Our Program: Reggio-inspired and Play-based

We believe that children learn best through purpose and play, in a diverse community of teachers and peers where everyone belongs. Grounded in the belief that children are natural, curious learners with boundless potential, our Reggio Emilia-inspired program provides a nurturing and stimulating environment where young minds can flourish.

Our Preschool classrooms are vibrant, nurturing environments designed to cultivate a love for learning among our early learners. The core focus of our curriculum is to holistically nurture social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development while fostering creativity and curiosity in developmentally appropriate ways.

Our curriculum introduces age-appropriate academic, social, and emotional skills through the channels of discovery, exploration, and imaginative play. This approach supports each child's individual growth and encourages the development of their independence. In our carefully crafted learning environment, children are empowered to make their own choices. This environment includes a variety of teaching methods such as whole-class, individual, and small-group lessons and activities, centers for specific learning experiences, free time for exploration, and ample opportunities for indoor and outdoor play. Through these experiences, children learn the significance of friendship and respect, ultimately cultivating the qualities of a caring and responsible community member.

Key skills, including active listening, understanding and expressing their feelings, self-regulation, compromise, and collaboration, are not only taught but also actively practiced. These skills empower children with strategies to navigate their social world effectively. We place a strong emphasis on community building, which starts with our daily Morning Meeting, aligning with the principles of the Responsive Classroom approach. This morning gathering reinforces the emerging sense of self while fostering a sense of community. Through various community-building activities, students learn to take responsibility, encourage learning from one another, and establish relationships that will continue to grow throughout their time at FFS.

In addition to these core elements, our students have the opportunity to engage in various enriching experiences throughout the week. They explore the arts, utilize our library, participate in physical education, and practice mindfulness and movement activities. These experiences contribute to their well-rounded development and provide a holistic foundation for their educational journey.

Reggio Emilia and Frankford Friends School

Child-Centered Learning: Our curriculum is thoughtfully designed to be child-led, with a focus on cultivating each child's unique interests and strengths. Through observation and attentive guidance, our teachers tailor learning experiences to spark curiosity, encourage exploration, and foster a lifelong love of learning.

Project-Based Exploration: In our classrooms, children embark on captivating, long-term projects that delve deeply into topics of interest. These projects are collaborative endeavors, where children work together, share ideas, and engage in hands-on exploration. By immersing themselves in these meaningful experiences, children develop critical thinking skills, creativity, and a sense of ownership over their learning journey.

Inspiring Environments: Our learning spaces are carefully curated to inspire curiosity, creativity, and independence. From inviting reading corners to dynamic art studios, every corner of our classrooms is designed to stimulate young minds and ignite their imagination. Natural materials, open-ended resources, and flexible learning areas empower children to explore, experiment, and express themselves freely.

Celebrating Growth and Collaboration: At Frankford Friends School, we celebrate every child's unique journey of growth and discovery. Through ongoing documentation, we capture and reflect on children's learning experiences, making their progress visible to both families and educators. Collaboration is at the heart of our community, where teachers, children, and families come together to support each child's development and well-being.

Join Our Community! We invite you to discover the transformative power of a Reggio Emilia-inspired education at Frankford Friends School. Through rich, immersive experiences and a nurturing community of learners, we empower children to become confident, compassionate, and curious individuals ready to embrace the world around them.

Woodcock Designs, Architect Rendering, 2023

Welcome from our Director of Early Childhood Center
Talia Morris

Dear friends,

School experiences are pivotal in shaping children's young minds, and we feel privileged to be bringing an FFS education to Fishtown! At Frankford Friends School we are placing children at the center of a joyful learning journey. This resonates deeply with our philosophy that cherishes the unique potential and Light within each living thing.

Our Early Childhood program is inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach and grounded in play-based learning. It fosters a harmonious educational partnership between students and teachers, resonating deeply with the Quaker emphasis on community and cooperation, and nurturing critical thinking and creativity. Its appreciation for the environment and use of natural materials harmonizes with Quaker values of simplicity, stewardship, and environmental responsibility, instilling a deep respect for nature in young learners.This environment cultivates collective growth and shared experiences, reinforcing what it means to be a community and allowing children to flourish. At FFS, the expectation to create and provide a very high quality experience for students is palpable. I am proud to be a part of it and to bring the Frankford Friends experience to Fishtown.

In friendship,


Age Requirements

Preschool: Children from 2.5 years to Prekindergarten age
PreK: Children must be 4 years old by the first day of the school year they wish to attend

**All students must be fully toilet-independent  and be able to use the bathroom independently

How to Apply

Mid-year 2023-24 Enrollment (March 15-May 15, 2024)
Frankford Friends School offers early admission options for the current (2023-24) school year for children 2.5-4 years old. Early admissions end on May 15, 2024.

  • Submit the application and your application fee
  • Tour
  • Interview with the Coordinator of Admissions
  • Student Visitation Day
  • Receive enrollment decision
  • Sign and return contract (with $800 deposit)
  • Be ready to join our community!

2024-25 School Year Enrollment (start date of July 8, 2024):

  • Submit the application and your application fee
  • Tour
  • Interview with the Coordinator of Admissions
  • Student Visitation Day
  • Receive enrollment decision
  • Sign and return contract (with $800 deposit)
  • Be ready to join our community on July 8, 2024!

Interest List (children may be added to this list at birth)

  • Submit an inquiry
  • We'll contact you when we start accepting applications for the year you indicated on your interest form.
  • Submit the application and your application fee to register your interest for a preferred enrollment year 
  • Tour and interview (2-6 months before preferred start date)
  • Interview with the Coordinator of Admissions
  • Student Visitation Day
  • Receive enrollment decision
  • Sign and return contract (with $800 deposit)
  • Be ready to join our community as soon as space is available!

Note: All students must be fully toilet-independent before the first day of school.

Woodcock Designs, Architect Rendering, 2023


Frankford Friends School offers a markedly reduced tuition, lower than that of any Quaker school in the Delaware Valley. We believe that a school environment where all socio-economic groups are represented contributes an important element to the diversity of our community, and provides an opportunity for students to develop the necessary skills to create and collaborate with peers from a variety of backgrounds.

Our program best serves a child’s academic, social, and emotional development when they are at school full time. Priority is given to students who will attend full days, five days a week.

2024-25 Tuition Rates

Full Year (includes summer)
$18,800 - Preschool 5 full days
$18,800 - PreKindergarten 5 full days
$13,150 - Preschool 5 half days

Extended Day:  $10 per day for 4:00pm pickup; $25.00 per day for 6:00pm pickup

***Extended Day hours end at 5:15 until the school year beginning on July 8, 2024

Tuition Assistance

The student body of Frankford Friends School reflects the rich tapestry of racial, ethnic, and socio-economic diversity found in the city of Philadelphia. Our tuition and financial aid strategy prioritizes accessibility, and remains the most affordable among Quaker schools in the Delaware Valley.  

If you believe that Frankford Friends School is the right place for your family, we want to help you be a part of our community! Our tuition assistance program serves students PreK and older. Tuition assistance is dispersed based on the information you submit in your FACTS application to determine financial need. The Admissions Office can share information about other sources of support as well. Some additional discounts are offered to families with 3 or more students enrolled at Frankford Friends.

If you have questions about tuition assistance at Frankford Friends School, simply connect with our Tuition Assistance Director at

Learn more about the tuition assistance application process.