Advance Friends Select: Transformation Campaign

Friends Select School is excited to announce that we are currently expanding our campus with the purchase of the building located at 1520 Race Street, and we are simultaneously undergoing a major transformation of the first floor of our main building located at 17th Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

Working with James Bradberry Architects, the Advance Friends Select: Transformation Campaign will create state-of-the-art classrooms to match the high quality of our educational program, adding much-needed space where excellence in teaching and learning will surely continue. This campaign will deepen our Quaker roots and values, and demonstrate our continued commitment to the city of Philadelphia, as well as the role it plays in educating our students and faculty who utilize the city as a classroom. The Advance Friends Select: Transformation Campaign reflects the culmination of our strategic plan, and will ultimately create a collaborative learning environment that is more vibrant, welcoming, and accessible for our entire community.



The purchase of 1520 Race Street, an historic brick townhouse, will add much needed space for upper school classrooms. Located adjacent to the Race Street Meetinghouse and Friends Center—the home of the Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, one of the two governing bodies of Friends Select School—the expansion to 1520 Race Street will strengthen Friends Select’s long-standing partnership with this local and global Quaker hub. With renovations projected to be complete prior to the start of the 2022-23 school year, the expansion to 1520 Race Street will:

• Provide three floors of space for three modern science laboratories, three art and design studios, and four additional upper school classrooms.
• Create student gathering space, meeting spaces for students and faculty, and upper school administrative offices.
• Sustain our commitment to Quaker values and social justice while also providing opportunities that elevate the student voice and agency for change.
• Expand Friends Select’s campus in Center City, and allow us to further our ability to leverage external partnerships to meet teaching and learning goals. 
• Renovate a registered historic property while preserving the building’s facade and historic integrity.
• Create much needed lower and middle school classrooms in our building at 17th and the Parkway.


Parkway Building: First Floor Transformation

Friends Select is transforming the west side and entrance to our main building at 17th and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway to reflect a 21st-century learning space. With renovations scheduled to be completed this summer, in time for the 2021-22 school year, the first floor transformation will:

• Create four new lower school classrooms.
• Create a new lower school art studio.

• Provide a significantly larger, updated lobby space at the front entrance of the building to offer an inviting space for the community to gather.
• Create a front office suite for the head of school and admission department, as well as an admission lobby to welcome prospective students and their families.
• Enhance the school’s accessibility and overall visibility. 
• Create facilities that mirror and support the high quality programs we offer to students. 


The purchase of the 1520 Race Street Building, as well as the revitalization of our current Parkway Building, support our vision of a school that—through its role and reputation as a renowned Center City institution—strengthens cross-cultural connections and reach through academic programming, global experiences, and leverages reciprocal partnerships to enhance educational, financial, and facility goals. 

For more information about supporting the Advance Friends Select: Transformation Campaign, please contact Christine Jefferson, director of development and alumni relations, at, or 215.561.5900, x3141.