"We prepare students to engage in the world that is and to help bring about a world that ought to be."

Message from Bo

Welcome to our website and the 2023-2024 academic year. We are fortunate this year to welcome 803 students from 106 zip codes to our community: a new record high for enrollment!

Founded in 1786, almost concurrently with the founding of our country, Friends has remained a steady beacon of education and values in New York City. As we celebrate this long-standing commitment, our 176 dedicated faculty and administrative staff members are mindful of our responsibility to continually nurture and grow our school, to live our Quaker values and to ensure that our program prepares our students for a rapidly changing, interconnected world, and help them “bring about a world that ought to be.”

Guided by the Quaker testimonies of integrity, peace, equality and simplicity, this is a school where students exercise their curiosity and imagination through a broad, diversified academic program designed to expose students to a wide range of subjects, disciplines, ideas, cultures and viewpoints. Students are guided to connect that learning to the world around them by participating in hands-on, experiential learning that is focused on tangible, vital issues like climate and social  justice. Through these engagements with important issues facing the school, city, country and world, our students—regardless of subject or grade—gain an understanding of their connections to each of these communities and one another.
In Lower School, a K-4 science curriculum utilizing our rooftop greenhouse connects students to the natural world as they actively plant, tend and harvest a variety of plants and vegetables. In addition, Grade 2 students study the city around them by experiencing it in a hands-on manner. They walk the Brooklyn bridge, observing not only this grand landmark, but also the connection of two very unique parts of our city; they take a water taxi trip to view the city from the vantage point of the water that surrounds it; and they visit the NYC panorama at the Queens museum.

In the Middle School, Climate Action Day is an opportunity for students in Grades 7 and 8 to apply concepts learned in math and science classes to environmental issues in our school, our neighborhood and the city. From reimagining the Annex as a solar passive building, to calculating the amount of carbon stored in our local park’s trees, to comparing the costs of electric and gas-powered vehicles, students take active roles in identifying issues and developing solutions. Academics are deployed to address real issues.

And in the Upper School, senior projects are a capstone requirement for graduation. All seniors spend the last weeks of the school year outside of the classroom engaged in this work. Some students design their own independent projects, while others choose to engage in experiential learning as a class. Students in our History of the Adirondacks class, for example, spend five days camping and kayaking in the Adirondacks, studying the histories of the indigenous and Black residents of those communities. 
This is Friends, and these are but a few examples of the exciting things happening within our walls and beyond. I invite you to explore our website to learn more, and I hope that your curiosity about our school will continue to increase as a result. It would be our pleasure to answer any questions you may have about the Friends experience, no matter what grade you may be exploring. Please don’t hesitate to contact our admissions office if we can be of assistance.
In the meantime, I wish you all the best.
Robert (Bo) Lauder
Head of School
Friends Seminary actively promotes diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism in all its programs and operations, including admissions, financial aid, hiring, and all facets of the educational experience. To form a community which strives to reflect the world’s diversity, we do not discriminate on the basis of race or color, religion, nationality, ethnicity, economic background, physical ability, sex, gender identity or expression, or sexual orientation. Friends Seminary is an equal opportunity employer.

222 East 16th Street
New York, NY 10003
P: 212-979-5030
F: 212.979.5034
Friends Seminary — the oldest continuously operated, coeducational school in NYC — serves college-bound day students in Kindergarten-Grade 12.