“For the long-term health of the institution, this had to happen,” says Michael Letts, Episcopal Academy’s director of communications, in reference to the school’s move from its Merion campus to a new $212.5 million home in Newtown Square. “Early on, we did a series of intensive parent surveys. Over 97 percent said ‘yes’ [to the move].” The public kickoff for the new campus came in the form of a well-publicized groundbreaking. “Not simply an announcement, but a community gathering that drove it home to people that this is going to happen and we are going to move,” says Letts. “We’ve always been able to bring the essence of who we are to where we are. At our core, we see ourselves as a family.”
Tuition: $24,500 (Upper School)
Tech specs: Eight computers and 26 digital language labs
Athletics: 40-meter pool includes two moveable bulkheads; 10 squash courts; rowing tank for crew; 12 competition fields, including two types of turf—regular-length grass and short grass (each groomed for a specific sport); athletic center (1,300 capacity).
Arts: 600-seat theater and black-box theater. Campus center houses five art studios, a 3-D art studio with furnace, a digital media lab, and a gallery space.
Library: Two libraries with various study rooms and two digital teaching spaces
Dining: Tierney Hall features round tables to create stronger relationships with teachers and students.
Enrollment: 500 students (Upper School)
Parking: More than 650 spaces
“We want to make sure our amenities equal our potential,” says Haverford headmaster Joseph Cox of its new state-of-the-art Upper School, the basis for a $60 million fund-raising campaign. According to Cox, going green was a no-brainer in light of the area’s expanding eco-consciousness. Haverford hopes to receive gold certification from LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), and Cox believes students can only benefit from the “natural benefits” provided.
Tuition: $26,700 (Upper School)
Tech specs: 18 desktop computers in the computer lab and 12 in the library; 20 laptops for use in other classrooms.
Academics: 26 classrooms and four foreign language classrooms with SMART Boards
Arts: 2-D and 3-D studios; darkroom and multimedia studio.
Library: Wireless access to more than 20 subscription databases; designated spaces for group and silent work.
Enrollment: 379 students (Upper School)