90% of the students who attend Wilmington Friends are non-Quakers. What brings families to Quaker education is often the appeal of an academic program with depth--one that truly asks students to think, to collaborate, to be creative, to take risks--within a caring community that balances focus on the individual with responsibility to the common good.
This mission cultivates four major outcomes for students who attend Wilmington Friends School.
- In the Quaker education setting, there is the belief in the unique dignity of each person, which schools have an obligation to recognize and to nurture. And every member of the community shares in that obligation to value what is best in themselves and in others--developing talents to the fullest, and respecting the strengths, efforts, and perspectives of all.
Outcome: students gain confidence and can grow to their fullest potential because their uniqueness is valued as an asset––to themselves and to their peers–– in the learning process.
- A core principle in Quaker education is “continuing revelation,” the idea that the process of learning is continuous through seeking, experience, and reflection. Students at Quaker schools are encouraged to ask questions, to think both independently and cooperatively, to test ideas against experience and new information, to engage in education as a process of exploration and discovery.
Outcome: students learn to be innovative and resourceful people who can see and solve problems, becoming assets to colleges and employers, and as entrepreneurs and change-makers.
- The Quaker testimonies, known by the acronym SPICES, are also evident in Friends schools. The testimonies include stewardship, peace, integrity, community, equality, and simplicity. Again, those guiding values attract families from many faith and spiritual traditions, seeking a school where intellectual endeavor and ethical commitment are mutually reinforcing.
Outcome: students can see beyond themselves, becoming assets to the broader community and to the world.
- Meeting for Worship is at the heart of Quaker practice. Each week we gather together to sit in silence, allowing time for students to listen to their inner voice. If anyone feels moved to share a message with the group, they rise and speak. Often people offer experiences, perspectives, or even a simple encouraging phrase (like our youngest students sharing "Go Eagles!"). Even if no one shares a message during meeting for worship, the silence can be healing, nourishing, and creative.
Outcome: students learn the power of mindfulness, which, in today's world, is an asset to their own continued health and wellness.
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