Yes, kids are free to direct their own day. No, we are not tuition free. Tuition for 2017-2018 is a sliding scale from $1,800-$13,000 for the year, with a discount available for siblings. Beyond this, we have scholarships and programs that assist families for whom the lower end of the scale is burdensome.
PFS is at 2001 Christian St. in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood of Philadelphia, just 5 minutes from Rittenhouse Square.
Students come to PFS from all over the region! Many of our families carpool or ride public transit. Some students walk or ride their bikes to school. SEPTA lines run very near the school -- more info at www.septa.org. Students who live in Philadelphia more than 1.5 miles away from the school may receive free weekly transpasses for their SEPTA commuting.
PFS does not provide meals. Most students bring packed lunches or go off campus to get lunch at one of the local shops in the neighborhood. The school provides a mini-fridge, electric kettle, toaster oven, and microwave available for student use.
School is open 9AM-4PM, Monday through Friday. Drop off as early as 8:30 for no additional charge. Extended care before school starting at 8:15, and after school until 6:30pm, is available for an additional fee.
At PFS, we are committed to making the school accessible to those who wish to enroll, regardless of ability to pay. Our school uses an independent third party called FACTS to determine the need for tuition assistance. Click here to apply to FACTS to determine what your expected family contribution would be for tuition.
Most children can thrive at PFS. Students often find that the learning differences and behavior issues they experience in other environments do not manifest themselves in a Free School environment. We are happy to work with any outside entity which provides support to children with special needs to provide services to them at PFS. Please reach out to us if you have specific concerns.
Parents serve a vital role in supporting students as they learn to direct their own education. We ask that all parents join a committee to help with the smooth running of the school. Committees do things like plan events, manage our social media presence, and do outreach for the school. Additionally, parents are involved in school governance as voting members of our School Assembly, which meets twice a year to decide broad policy, like tuition and calendar.
Since we enroll students year-round, we are always growing. As of April 2017, we have 79 students.