Biographical / Historical
Media-Providence Friends School was established in 1981 through the merger of two educational institutions, Media Friends' School and Providence Friends School, both located in Media, Pennsylvania. The new school was incorporated separately from its parent meetings (Media Monthly Meeting and Providence Monthly Meeting) with the stipulation that at least 51% of the School Committee be members of the Society of Friends. At first, it offered a kindergarten through high school curriculum, but the upper division was laid down in 1987 due to declining enrollment.
Media Friends' School first opened in 1876 in a room above a livery stable on Baltimore Pike. In 1881, it was placed under the care of Media Preparative Meeting, and, in 1886, a school house was built. Chester Monthly Meeting (O), held at Media, assumed control in 1913.
After at least eight years of discussion, in 1930 Media Friends' School merged with Friends' Select School (Media, Pa.). Friends' Select School opened in 1885 in Media, Pa., under the care of Providence Preparative Meeting (H), which was succeeded by Chester Monthly Meeting (H). After the merger, classes were held in both buildings until classrooms were built in the Media Meeting House in 1935 and the Friends' Select School building was sold to Beth Israel Congregation.
Providence Friends School was founded in 1974 by Providence Monthly Meeting to provide a secondary-level education for Friends' children in the Media area. By 1978, it was a full secondary school with students in four grades, 9-12.