At Friends Community School, we ask big questions and make space to pursue solutions--and more questions.
Welcome to Friends Community School. Now in our fourth decade, FCS is a thriving school that guides young children through adolescence. At FCS, students are respected, childhood is celebrated, and learning is experiential. On our campus and you will see children actively engaging in their studies, happily playing at recess, quietly reflecting in Meeting for Worship, and joyfully creating in the arts. Our students are lifelong learners, courageous risk-takers, and joyful peacemakers who matriculate to rigorous independent, parochial, and public magnet schools in the greater Washington, D.C. area. 

FCS was born from the Quaker faith and is sustained by Quaker values. As a Quaker school, we believe that intellectual education and moral education are one. Our core values--simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality, and stewardship--are embedded in our curriculum and student and adult interactions. Quaker schools were founded nearly 300 years ago with a commitment to education for all, regardless of race, class, or gender. FCS holds strongly to this practice. We see “that of God” in all. 

As a progressive school, we recognize that children learn best from experience and meaningful relationships with peers and teachers. Through hands-on lessons, a child-centered curriculum, collaborative projects, and intentional reflection, we foster deep learning. FCS students are asked big questions about the world around them and given the space, resources, and time to pursue solutions--and even more questions.
Partnership and community are key to our practice. Students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff, members of Adelphi Friends Meeting, and Trustees work to ensure that our mission is evident and we live up to our name. As you explore our website and visit our campus, you will come to see why “Friends” and “Community” are at the heart of our school. 

Angela Garcia
Head of School


List of 11 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. What is your mission?

    Our mission is to nurture lifelong learners, courageous risk-takers, and joyous peacemakers. We encourage young people to discover “That of God” within themselves and others, and to reach their fullest potential as individuals and contributing members of society. Read more about Our Mission...
  • Q. When was FCS founded, and by whom?

    FCS was founded in 1986 by members of Adelphi Friends Meeting in their Meeting House. FCS benefits from the long and distinguished tradition of Friends education that emerged in 1689 as a result of William Penn’s vision to educate all—Native Americans as well as colonists of all backgrounds—while emphasizing the linkage of intellectual, social, and spiritual growth. The diversity embraced by the early Quakers is cherished by FCS today. Read more on Quaker History...
  • Q. What distinguishes FCS from other schools?

    Quaker values are the foundation of our progressive, child-centered approach to education. Integrating these values into life at FCS every day enables students to experience true joy in learning.

    Courageous risk-takers abound at FCS. This prong of our mission is unique to FCS. In focusing on the process of learning as well as the product, FCS encourages students to take risks and stretch their views, affirming efforts to think outside of the box and rewarding success.

    FCS students love to learn, know how to learn, and know how to disagree respectfully. They communicate well, both verbally and in writing. And they are determined to make their mark on the world. Read more on our Values and Graduates...
  • Q. What distinguishes your Middle School?

    FCS middle school students are exceptionally well-prepared for high school, primarily as a result of producing their cumulative and comprehensive Year-End Projects on topics of their choice. Seventh and eighth graders also enjoy Arts & Technology Electives that may include figure drawing, movie-making, robotics, small business start-up, and more.

    Due to our learning philosophy, social interactions, and expression of Quaker values, our middle school students show emotional and social maturity in their choices. High school teachers and counselors consistently praise FCS students for this. Read more on FCS Middle School and After FCS...
  • Q. Where do your students and families live?

    FCS families generally live within the borders established by: Silver Spring/Takoma Park; Columbia/Laurel; Bowie/Mitchellville/Upper Marlboro, Clinton/ Ft. Washington; Capitol Hill; and NE/NW DC. We also have a few families who live as far away as Port Tobacco in Calvert County, Davidsonville in Anne Arundel County, Mt. Airy in Carroll and Frederick Counties, and Alexandria, VA. Visit our Directions page...
  • Q. How many students are enrolled?

    Approximately 240 students are enrolled.
  • Q. What is the average class size?

    Class sizes range from 12-18 students, depending on age, grade, and subject.
  • Q. How diverse is the student body?

    Approximately 51% of the FCS student body meets the U.S. Census definition of race as White, 20% as Black, 22% as multiracial, and 7% as another race. In addition to racial diversity, FCS students share experiences from different faiths, family structures, geographic regions of the D.C.-metro area, and socio-economic backgrounds. 
  • Q. Does FCS offer financial aid?

    Approximately 38% of FCS students receive financial aid. FCS offers modest amounts of financial aid based on relative need. Read more on Tuition & Financial Aid...
  • Q. What credentials do your teachers have?

    The average amount of experience for FCS full-time faculty is 11 years. Most of our teachers have master’s degrees or are working toward them. Ongoing professional development in progressive practice and Quaker values ensures teachers' effectiveness at FCS. Read more about our Faculty...
  • Q. Where do your graduates go to high school?

    Our graduates attend a range of high schools that suit their talents, abilities, and parents’ pocketbooks. What is most important is that they are successful from the start of freshman year.

    The range of independent and religious-affiliated high schools includes (but is not limited to) Sidwell Friends, Georgetown Day, Edmund Burke, Field, Sandy Spring Friends, Bullis, Key, Gonzaga, Dematha, St. John’s College, Stone Ridge, Holy Child, Good Counsel, Palotti, Elizabeth Seton, and St. Anselm’s Abbey.

    The public schools attended by our students include Eleanor Roosevelt (Science & Tech and Quest programs), the Montgomery County magnet programs, Duke Ellington School of the Arts, and School Without Walls. Read more on After FCS...

Message from the Head

List of 2 news stories.

  • 9.13.19

    “Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.”    
    --Fred Rogers
    Read More
  • 9.6.19

    One of my favorite quotes that I think best sums up teaching elementary and middle-school children comes from Plato. The philosopher wrote, “The beginning is the most important part of any work, especially in the case of a young and tender thing; for that is the time at which the character is being formed and the desired impression is more readily taken.”
    Read More
Located in College Park, MD, Friends Community School is a progressive Quaker K-8 day school, founded on the belief that every child is a valued member of our community. We offer a challenging curriculum imbued with strong values of equality, integrity, community, environmental stewardship, simplicity and peaceful conflict resolution, rooted in our Quaker heritage.
Friends Community School
5901 Westchester Park Drive
College Park, Maryland 20740