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K-6
Private
Pasadena, CA
Students enrolled: 32
Before care: Yes
After care: Yes

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524 East Orange Grove Boulevard
Pasadena, CA 91104

(626) 793-2727
Nearby homes for sale
Map of Friends Western School address.

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June 27, 2014
I am a recent graduate of Friends Western School and I would have to say the experience so far has been out of this world. On the last day of school, we had an epic dance party and when it was time to leave, I COULDN'T STOP crying because I was going to miss my friends so much and the amazing people I met there. The small class sizes were excellent for children who needed more attention and the teachers were able to teach everyone who were all at different levels. Everyone was so kind and it was a surprising considering at the beginning of my time at FWS, I was the only girl Again, I just had the most amazing experience at Friends Western School and now that I'm moving on to a middle school, Westridge school for girls, I know what I have learned at FWS will further me in my career and I will always remember Friends Western School.

- submitted by a community member
April 18, 2014
Great school for parents who like to be involved and participate in their child's school experience. Coming from a highly sought after charter school, we are grateful to find a real school experience for our child. Great fieldtrips, small class sizes, and a community feel.

- submitted by a parent
April 17, 2014
Our daughter is in her first year at FWS. Her first year of formal education was in a charter school. Although the charter school she attended had a wonderful mission and we saw many children thriving there, it just wasn t the right fit for our family. FWS offers smaller classrooms, individualized educational goals, and family engagement beyond our expectations. The teachers and families at FWS work together to meet our daughters academic and social/emotional goals. As a former public school teacher and parent(s) we feel fortunate to have found a place where our daughter is respected for who she is and how she learns. The growth we have seen this year both emotionally and academically are immeasurable.

- submitted by a parent
April 09, 2014
FWS is a school where kids are respected and treated as individuals. In that kind of environment they thrive as learners and as friends. The classes are small enough that the children can be known for who they are, they can learn at their own pace without judgement, and they treat each other with immense kindness. My daughter loves to come to school here.

- submitted by a parent
March 20, 2014
My daughters are in their second year at FWS. We feel fortunate to be at this school. The teachers are incredibly dedicated. The community is wonderful. The children are confident and friendships between students are not dependent on sharing the same age or class which seems unique and echoes the Montessori tradition. I have twin daughters and they read at very different levels: one being at her level or just under and the other being much more advanced. The teachers are able to meet both of my children's needs and there is no sense of competition. I definitely reccomend checking out FWS if you are looking for a progressive, academically grounded environment for your child.

- submitted by a parent
March 20, 2014
Our daughter is in her second year at Friends Western School and loves it. The small size of the classes is great. She is taught as a unique individual based upon her own needs and learning style. There is also a great sense of community among the parents and children.

- submitted by a parent
March 19, 2014
It s nice to talk about educational philosophies and field trips and community, but what parents really want (and need) to know is: Will Friends Western School provide my child with a good education? Having just completed the rigorous process of applying to middle school, I can honestly tell you that the answer is a resounding Yes. Our daughter applied to some of the most competitive schools in the area and was accepted to every school she applied to. She will be attending the Westridge School next fall and, as her parents, we are thrilled with her success. Friends Western s individualized curriculum helped our daughter not only excel academically, but also to find her voice a quality that many schools do not seem to value. At FWS, emphasis is placed on developing the whole child and we ve not only seen our daughter flourish, but her classmates as well. Childhood is a really precious time and it flies by so quickly. Our daughter's experiences at Friends Western School have helped to define her and will be a part of the wonderful and accomplished woman she ll undoubtedly become.

- submitted by a parent
March 13, 2014
My daughter is in the 2nd grade and being a part of a Quaker Cooperative School has been a lovely, energetic, boisterous, frustrating, exhilarating, challenging, educational, and rewarding experience. I like the extra activities like hikes, field trips, clubs, music and art. I also am enjoying the new educational endeavors of the teachers. My child has increased her reading skills by 2 grade levels in just half a year. There are also specialty staff to assist in academic assessments as well a counsel if my daughter is having an emotional day. All the tools are in place to help her to be a well rounded adult and face educational and social challenges that impact all kids. I also really enjoy the families who work to pull it all together. When I first started I felt like we were a bunch of pirates, but we've been learning about Quaker communication styles and it seems to be helping us get needs met without much swashbuckling. The school could improve with their fundraising and grant efforts so we could better support all the sweat equity that has been gifted by parents, teachers and support staff. For now, I just need some shades, cuz it looks pretty bright.

- submitted by a parent
August 30, 2013
This is the place for my daughter and meets her needs to a tee. Every child learns differently and the indiviualized attention and differentiation has been very helpful with her education. I love that the class sizes are capped at 14, though the average is closer to 10. Also the numerous amount of field trips and experiential learning opportunities just abound. This school requires a lot of the parents, being a co-op, but the rewards have been fabulous. And almost every parent at this school would agree. The teachers are very knowledgeable about assessing and working with the student to acheive the goals. The Principle Leadership is awesome, since, again, being a co-op, the administration is the parents, and therefore parent involvement is at an astronomical level. Finally, communication is top notch, there hasn't been any suprises since my kid started here, like, there's a field trip today, sign my permission, etc. It is not just a great school, but a great community. 5 stars and 2 thumbs up.

- submitted by a parent
August 29, 2013
FWS is a wonderful community, has a great curriculum, and the kids love being there. I feel lucky to be a part of this small but growing school.

- submitted by a parent
February 05, 2013
Wonderful school. The teachers here are everything we hoped for and more. The co-op structure works for us. Thank you!

- submitted by a parent
October 22, 2012
Our son has been at FWS for two years so far. He loves it! We tried public school for Kindergarten, and he hated it, so at first we started him part time. He asked to switch to full time, and has wanted to go to school every day since coming to FWS. Our son is grade levels ahead in reading and math, and his teacher is able to give him advanced work. Finding an affordable private school with small classes and regular field trips was a dream come true. So far, this year has exceeded our expectations as parents in the community. We have always had caring and dedicated people working to make the school run, but this year is special. Our new Board President is pragmatic, yet she invites discussion, and is respectful of people's opinions and ideas. She brings a calm and inclusive energy to the school. I feel like parents are taking on tasks and making them their own. There is a mood of mutual cooperation and problem solving that is more positive than ever before. Our Fall Barn Dance was a lovely night full of community spirit. Relatives who attended asked how we found such an amazing community of people! FWS is becoming a real gem.

- submitted by a parent
October 20, 2012
We came from London, England, to work in Los Angeles for a year and we could not have found a more welcoming, friendly and positive environment for our children and ourselves. The small class sizes and imaginative curriculum provide children with confidence and stimulation and I was particularly impressed with the regular outings and trips into the city. My kids saw more of LA than I did - highlights included interviewing scientists at an insect laboratory, sketching at Watts Towers, or rambling in Eaton Canyon. Most of all, my children were happy and they miss the school enormously now we're back in England. The parent co-op that runs the school is extremely impressive and utterly dedicated to providing the best education and environment for your children.

- submitted by a parent
October 15, 2012
My son has begun his fifth year at Friends Western School and we couldn't be happier. We feel that we are part of an extraordinary community, made up of a diverse parent body who contribute their varied gifts and expertise to the school. Our diversity is exciting, but even more exciting is our commitment to making a loving place for our children to thrive. Although the parents are a huge part of this cooperative endeavor, most pertinent are our teachers and children. Our teachers are a dedicated team of professionals who are able to teach their students using developmentally appropriate project based learning approaches. And our children? Well, first and foremost they LOVE school: they love learning and experiencing. This year they have already been hiking, sewing, lego clubbing, barn dancing, painting, calculating, building, singing, reading, cooking, sharing, and riding wheels together! This list only scrapes the surface. I work in the education field, and know first hand how our schools have taken the joy out of learning. At Friends Western, I can truly say that we have a place where children love and respect all that the world has to offer!

- submitted by a parent
October 10, 2012
Friends Western School has been a lovely and enriching experience for our entire family. This is our 4th year at the school and it's been wonderful to see the positive growth and the change into the cooperative structure. Last night was our second Membership Meeting of the year, and it was a pleasure to witness the room full of engaged and compassionate parents and teachers working together to create a dynamic and meaningful educational experience for the kids. We've considered leaving Los Angeles for years, since neither my husband nor I are natives and didn't think that we wanted to raise our children in L.A., but now with FWS, we are a part of a down to earth, conscious and real community and feel that we can grow roots here and stay. Most importantly, our child is thriving in this school socially, emotionally, and intellectually. We highly recommend it.

- submitted by a parent
October 09, 2012
Parents seeking a school should absolutely investigate for yourselves. Trusting only marketing materials or select spokes-parents would be fooling yourself. Reach out to over 10 families who are no longer there for an array of serious reasons (hint: they didn't simply "move"). Attempts to describe every one of "the disappeared" as a "bad fit" is grossly oversimplifying matters and reveals a determined effort to deflect attention from the real issues plaguing this school. Speak to former parents first hand to determine any peculiar patterns re: governance and student misbehavior. Ask about the circumstances leading to their departure and whether marketing was truthful based on the reality. Examine the by-laws, check for any red flags concerning conflict reslolution and governance. Know exactly what you're getting your kids and yourslef into. We found a school that appeared charming from a distance and on the surface, but was actually engulfed with severe student behavior problems. Combine that with a parent body set on diverting the problems with a calamity of unethical distortions and deceptions. You've now been warned about the behavior and morality experiment that is FWS.

- submitted by a parent
October 06, 2012
After hearing about this small school, I was favorably impressed with its nurturing environment for education. Teachers/staff were open and friendly. Students were engaged and looked comfortable and happy. I suggest that interested parents investigate for themselves - be prepared for a wonderful experience!

- submitted by a community member
September 30, 2012
As a mom who was lucky to have a baby years after my first crew of kids were grown, I had forgotten all about the issue of having to choose a school. I was totally freaked out at the prospect. I tried every form of schooling with my older children. We did public, private, charter and home schooling. I loved home schooling the best, but my kids really missed being around other kids thier age. FWS has the limitless potential of homeschooling but doesn't miss out on the ability to have friends to see everyday. As well, I no longer have to worry about the academic part. With excellent instructors on campus, I can be part of doing fun creative things with no stress. There is the issue of having to work in a cooperative way, which isn't for everyone, as you can see by some oddly negative comments, but with the students, teachers, and parents being so genuinely sweet and proactive I feel safe and confident having my young child here. I never worry because she is surrounded by kids and adults who make her feel loved and important. If my child can't be with me then I want to know she's with others who care for her.

- submitted by a parent
September 30, 2012
I'm a dad here at FWS and my kid loves it. I see some of the bad reviews and wonder what planet some people are on right now, cuz it ain't on this one. Some people love it, some don't. All I know is that I express my grumpy opinion all the time and I'm still around, so the only suggestion I can give to anyone who uses this site is to take the way out emotional criticism with a big fat grain of salt. And consider that some people are difficult, or maybe even impossible and even though they aren't around they still want to cause trouble to those who are actually building something of value. When I look around at the campus, I gotta wear shades, cuz it's actually pretty bright here at FWS. I guess that's all I gotta say about that. Thanks for even reading my review.

- submitted by a parent
September 30, 2012
Given the intimate size of this gem of a school, I was astonished to see the number of negative reviews written until I was made aware of a disgruntled family who was asked to leave the membership because the school could not, with integrity, meet their child's needs. Apparently this family is very angry and can't appreciate that no school provides a "one size fits all" approach and has left numerous negative reviews using different logins. I understand their frustration, as our previous school couldn't meet our needs and we made the decision to leave, but I wonder why they're obsessing about a school that they obviously didn't feel was a good fit, and not looking forward to finding that good match for their child. For our family, FWS appears to be the ideal fit. Our daughter's teacher has taken great care to assess her academic needs and also to make her feel welcome and comfortable. Is it perfect? No. No school is. But I trust that with our hard work, cooperation, and a positive attitude, we'll see our daughter happy, studious and thriving. I wish the same for this other family.

- submitted by a parent
September 29, 2012
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
September 29, 2012
Friends Western is a sweet little gem of a school. I can say that from both an honest and well informed viewpoint, because I've been a part of its extended community for almost 5 years and have had the honor of observing its growth from being an inspired Quaker administration, to a Quaker inspired Cooperative. It's obvious to me that after reading the negative comments, that there's a disgruntled family sharing their views, repeatedly. That's their right and choice to do so, but I can only hope that they will one day choose to take that energy elsewhere and channel it in a positive manner. FWS has over 5 talented instructors who depend on this school for a living, and over 30 happy families and students who are thriving in a wonderful program. It's true that it's not a fit for everyone, so may they please understand that, and walk in peace and love to find a different program that works for them. Friends Western is well worth investigating, for those inspired. Namaste.

- submitted by a community member
September 27, 2012
I am a new parent at FWS. Also a lifelong Quaker. It is true that this school iis not for everyone. As a co-operative school it requires hard work and a flexible attitude. The teachers are wonderful, the kids are wonderful and the atmosphere is very welcoming. Navigating all the issues that a school must face is a challenging process but one which can lead to evolution and growth. The families that make up this cooperative are open to growth, seeking engagement and input from their new members. I feel fortunate to be a part of this wonderful school.

- submitted by a parent
September 27, 2012
Amazing is an understatement in describing this school.Friends Western is the reason we live in Southern California.This school has innovative teachers & dedicated parents.The leadership is composed of selfless parent-members who are constantly working on or at the school.As a new co-op,there is much to learn and much work to do,but that does not mean that every person will be part of every decision made.It's an idea shared in much of the Quaker guidance literature on school governance.Because of this, there IS a structure and a hierarchy, so our leadership can make the most effective decisions regarding the future of our students.The core idea behind Friends Western is that you CAN be part of the decisions made, and you can remain informed by participating on a committee,attending strategic planning,attending board meetings, and running for the board.Standing on the sidelines and complaining is not tolerated by the underlying philosophy of the school, the member community or the leadership. We stand strongly behind each-other, the teachers, the board, and most importantly, our children.Our daughter loves this school.We love this school.We can't imagine our world without it.

- submitted by a parent
September 25, 2012
Friends Western School is FANTASTIC!!! We have found the school of our dreams for our children, which is quite a feat! It's an amazing program - it could be classified as a gifted program, wherein every child is recognized as having their gifts and their unique learning style is nurtured, and divergent thinking encouraged. The community of families and teachers are just lovely, as well. There may be a misconception that because it's a Cooperative that there isn't a structured governance nor rigorous academics - there are - it's highly organized and very judiciously governed by intelligent, compassionate parents and teachers, with a very strong curriculum, and it's growing. This school serves as an inspiration and an innovative educational model for others. It is essential that parents are team players, flexible, leave their egos behind, and pleasantly participate and enjoy this amazing educational opportunity for their children, and in essence, their entire family. If you have difficulty with those concepts, this might not be a good fit for you. If you'd like to see a wonderful school with happy, vibrant, thriving students, you should check out Friends Western!

- submitted by a parent
September 18, 2012
This is an amazing school, with incredibly dedicated parents and teachers. The kids love this school and they care about each other like family. It is evolving into an exciting model of a cooperatively run elementary school. The best way to learn about the school is to come visit and talk to the parents and teachers themselves. A cooperative is not for everyone, but if it's the right match, it will truly change your family's life. It really is a "village" nurturing and raising children together, which is especially important in this big, anonymous city. No one can adequately learn about a school by politicized comments on a website.

- submitted by a parent
August 30, 2012
This school is loved by my kid. It's quirky and the co-op structure is different, not for everybody, you actually have to work to make it work! The teachers are passionate, the curriculum is dynamic, exciting, hands on with multiple field trip experiences. It's a pain in the butt to have to clean the class rooms, but I'd rather do that and put resources towards the kids. It'd be easier if every parent who decided to join FWS really understood the level of responsibility they take on when you join a co-op, but that's okay, my kid loves it there.

- submitted by a parent
August 26, 2012
I have never seen a more incompetently run school anywhere. There certainly is a very aggressive atmosphere on the playground as well as instances of bullying. The kids seem way behind regarding their grade levels. Teachers and parents seem incapable of imposing even a minimum of discipline. This Co-op does not live up to its lofty goals.

- submitted by a parent
August 05, 2012
As parents we would say that the most important thing to know about this school is that every child seems to love the place, and to thrive there. Yes, FWS has had some difficult moments this year, but fundamentally it is built on a warm and very dynamic community of teachers and parents, and we think they are doing a great job. If you are considering it, go and visit, meet the teachers and parents and children, and make up your own mind.

- submitted by a parent
July 20, 2012
Our personal experience with FWS CO-OP has been excellent. As a family that advocates the Home School experience, we have always looked to our children, for at least some guidance in the never ending gauntlet that is education in the 21st Century. We have never had any previous experience with a parent run Elementary school CO-OP, so we don't really have any other reference to draw upon. The bottom line, the children are happy. In fact, the children are so happy, that they cried when school ended this year. That sums it all up for us as parents. (Not sure what your experience was as a child in school, but I can assure you, mine did not involve tears when it was time for summer break.) The positive experience for our children has been reflected in the passionate, caring families that have all made a conscience decision to be a part of the CO-OP, and volunteer their time and energy to do all of the things, and we mean all, that frankly, most people take for granted in a Non Co-op school. We certainly did. This has only served to help us feel more connected. We are grateful to have found a place where our children feel warm, safe, nurtured, and loved. That is truly the greatest gift.

- submitted by a parent
July 08, 2012
I am a staff member at FWS and I feel very lucky to be working within a community that not only supports the children and families but gives the staff the confidence, respect, and freedom to create and implement an amazing program. In my opinion, just about any child/family will thrive at this school.

- submitted by a teacher
July 08, 2012
My son has had an amazing year at Friends Western School. This school has given me a whole new outlook on what's possible for children in regards to creative curriculum and education. My son loved going to school every day, has written screenplays in class, done incredible art, gone on amazing field trips, bonded closely with friends and has continued to excel in math, science and reading. I would give FWS a 5 star review except one thing that has been challenging. The board is made up entirely of parents whose children currently attend the school. I believe that this fact has hurt the school as an organization because without some objectivity to sensitive issues it can pull the school off track and lose focus as an inspired environment for the children and the community. I believe in this school and I think it's a great choice as a learning institution as long as it works out it's various kinks. With amazing teachers and a small student body this wonderful school has a ton of strong potential. We really appreciated our experience there!

- submitted by a parent
July 07, 2012
I am a parent with a child who is extremely happy at FWS. This year was a very challenging year for the co-op and i would venture to say that no current parent was pleased with the process or outcome of certain situations. However, next year there will be a largely different board which was voted on by the membership and the outcome showed that people at the school wanted a change. There is active discussion and research into hiring at least a part time director, as well as the implementation of an advisory board which will include members of the Quaker Meeting. A lot has been learned this year and i am hopeful that with the wonderful teachers and strong foundation, FWS will emerge from this year a stronger school. Ultimately FWS is about the students and teachers, unfortunately the fact it is a coop can complicate matters unnecessarily. This will hopefully become less of an issue over time and with a review of the bylaws and implementation of new leadership.

- submitted by a parent
June 13, 2012
The recent flurry of reviews (both negative and positive) of this school is a clear indicator that there are real problems that aren t being addressed openly and directly. FWS is indeed one of a handful of parent cooperatives in the U.S. Unfortunately, there is a divergence between the theory of a cooperative and the reality at FWS. This is further reinforced by an autocratic, defensive attitude by some members of the board of directors towards calls for meaningful change. Flawed by-laws fail to provide specific guidelines and objective due process for addressing and mediating incidents of bullying and other disciplinary problems. Yes, the teachers are highly competent and dedicated. Yes, parents are engaged in the school it s a requirement of the co-op. And, yes, field trips are fun and educationally enriching. Unfortunately, the leadership has made some terrible errors in judgment which we feel ultimately undermine the true meaning of cooperative. Sadly, we have had to disengage ourselves from this noble experiment. If you are considering enrolling your child at this school, read and understand the by-laws.

- submitted by a parent
June 06, 2012
FWS cooperate is a work in progress, on the job training so to speak. inspired by/modeled after Crestmont, now it is coming into it's own. We left public school for home schooling. 1 year later we tried FWS on a part time basis, to augment home learning. Soon thereafter, our son was wishing to be at FWS more and more. Now he is full time and thriving. It hasn't been easy for me, as a parent, to learn my role within the coop. This community is diverse and we sometimes have disagreements about approach, but the parents in the community understand that our goal is to create a unique learning environment where our children are free to be children. And the process of working out issues teaches the member families about nurturing our community. Not perfect to be sure, but the heart is sincere and loving. It has been a sanctuary for our child, despite some problems that have surfaced. A big challenge within a cooperative structure is to be truly cooperative for the betterment of the community. The passion for creating a special place and the effort of the parents involved at FWS, to be conscious of their role in that creation, is something that we never experienced before.

- submitted by a parent
June 05, 2012
A true cooperative is one that not only focuses on the well being of the children but also the well being of their parents. This school is desperately in need of an objective director. Though Crestmont is widely touted as a model for this school, the elementary co-op description is where the comparison begins and ends. It is hard to believe that the departure of 5 families this school term alone and the questionable termination of another family does not raise eyebrows and motivate more people to demand accountability and full transparency. It is unfortunate that the focus of teaching and caring for the children is hindered by an environment in which valued members of the community do not model the very behavior expressed on the school's website. The Quaker values of Community, Harmony, Integrity and Equality are sadly absent from the day to day governance of the school. It is sad to think that memories for some families will be forever marred by how ultimately they felt shunned, abandoned or even betrayed by the very people who were required to represent the needs of the entire membership and not of just a select few.

- submitted by a parent
June 05, 2012
We have both our children in this school and they love it. The field trips are great, the activities are hands on and engaging, and the community overall is warm and friendly. This is a coop so it entails a lot of hours as a parent, but we have felt that the ability to contribute towards our child's education directly has been extremely rewarding. Thank you FWS.

- submitted by a parent
June 05, 2012
There are no protocols in place to hold the governing body accountable at this school. Several families have either left or seen their membership terminated with no recourse or third-party review of the board s decision. This is not criminal, but unacceptable in a "cooperative, membership driven organization. Such a pattern and practice of disappeared families has marred our experience there. Further, in spite of the multiple issues pertaining to student behavior, there is no oversight or consistency regarding managing such behavior. And the fine teachers do their best to handle this without much help. The mission statement presented is a lovely ideal, but it is far from being put in practice. This is not a school that adheres to or deserves the Quaker Friends designation.

- submitted by a parent
December 12, 2011
This is our son's second year at FWS and he absolutely loves his school and his classmates. The multi-age learning opportunities introduce him to topics and ideas that most kids don't encounter until much later, but in an age-appropriate way (last year they read parts of Macbeth, for example!). He also gets to be a mentor to the younger kids. The small class sizes allow for very individualized instruction, as well.

- submitted by a parent
July 26, 2011
It's summer and my 11-year old son misses school! Friends Western is interested in the 'whole' child - academic, emotional, and social. It's an amazing little school with incredibly dedicated parents, teachers, and students - all engaged and interested in creating a real community.

- submitted by a parent
November 21, 2010
My daughter has been at this school for almost five years now. It has been such an amazing place for her, and for our family, for the school is more like a big family than a school. What makes it unique is that it is a parent-run cooperative, the class size is really small, and the curriculum is interesting, hands on and anything but boring. It is really a mix of traditional and progressive educational styles. The other thing I love about this school is its relaxed feel. The school has a high level of sophistication, but you will find no snobbery or elitism here- nor peer pressure. Just a lovely place where the kids love to learn! Come and visit us!

- submitted by a parent
June 26, 2010
We love this school. My son ist thriving. The multi-disciplinary approach has him so engaged that he doesn't even realize that he is learing to read, write, do math and be a scientist and a historian. His level of creativity has greatly increased. The teachers are wonderful.

- submitted by a parent
April 23, 2010
Do not send your child to this school unless (1) you want him to come home every day so excited about what he is learning (2) unbelievably happy and (3) incredibly enthused about learning. This school is not big or fancy, but the multi-disciplinary approach is very effective. We feel so blessed that we found it and that we trusted our instincts and went with it.

- submitted by a parent
no rating April 16, 2010
Wonderfully open, allowing children to explore, express, and grow into who they are.

- submitted by a parent
March 25, 2010
We have been at Friends Western School (FWS) for a year now and we are very happy here. My son is still very excited to go to school every day. FWS 's multiple intelligences model , a teaching method that nutures each child's talent and interest. I notice that my son has a deep understanding and interest in whatever subject the teacher is teaching. Personally, I love FWS because of the fun educational activities that my child get to be a part of: hiking, field trip, yoga, art, gardening, and construction projects. Here a child gets to really be a child. I feel that FWS has not only educating his mind, but his spirit as a unique well-rounded individual as well. If I were a kid again, I would have loved to go to this school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating July 08, 2009
I adore Friends Western. My daughter has been in the school for one year and we are returning next year. This is an amazing little school with old-fashioned values and great academics. The kids are sweet and happy. They teacher to student ratio is about 10:1. I cannot praise this enough. I am so thankful for it. I really feel this is the perfect education system and the happy, thriving children are proof of this! Before attending a public school (briefly), my daugher went to a Waldorf school for several years. This reminds me very much of a Waldorf school but with more conventional learning. I think it combines the best of Waldorf and Montessouri. Since it is so small the kids can really love and learn from each other.

- submitted by a parent
October 08, 2008
Absolutely wonderful school. We are so thankful to have found this gem. Our daughter couldn't be more excited about going everyday. Her curiosity for learning has increased 10 fold. The teachers are patient, engaging, and bring out the best in each child. Highly recommended.

- submitted by a parent
September 17, 2008
The Staff and teachers are wonderful here, the safety is top notch (I can't believe one parent complained about that) and I know my child is getting the individual attention he needs.

- submitted by a parent
no rating November 04, 2007
After raising three children, in a variety of school settings - public, private and boarding -and a teacher myself, I can tell you that teacher student ratio is 90% of what you pay for in any school setting. 20 children in a class means that they are getting fifteen minutes of attention apiece, combined with endless lining up, tying shoes and waiting around while everyone goes potty. At Friends Western School you are an individual from the moment you walk in the door - your learning style, your intelligence, strengths, your curiousity, that what Teacher Robin and Teacher Tracy are looking for so school can be a positive experience. They are creative, intelligent, compassionate teachers and believe that everyone has genius in them. The kids learn to learn and learn to love learning.

- submitted by a teacher
April 28, 2007
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
March 28, 2007
Friends Western, a Quaker school, uses multiple intelligence teaching. My children have been there for two terms now, and we are very pleased. Robin's lessons are imaginative and practical--for instance, children are currently learning geometry by building houses for their toys. Sonia, the kindergarten teacher, is like a compassionate and loving grandmother, and helps all the children feel secure and happy. Spanish is her first language, and Sonia speaks to the children in Spanish throughout the day. She even helps me practice! While I feel that the academics are excellent, and I appreciate that they include art, music and yoga, my greatest satisfaction is from the way the children work together, regardless of age or skill level. The program includes training for adults and children on peaceful conflict resolution, and everyone uses it. My children are happy at school, and they learn a lot, both socially and academically. I highly recommend Friends Western.

- submitted by a parent
October 31, 2006
My concern with this school is safety/discipline. We are no longer there.

- submitted by a parent
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About this school

Friends Western School is a vibrant K-6 Parent- Teacher run, Cooperative Elementary School located in Pasadena, CA. Friends Western School rests in the foundation provided by the Quaker belief that there is an inner light in each of us. This idea inspires the ethos of support, encouragement, respect and kindness that is evident at Friends Western. We are a member school of the Friends Council on Education and are proud to be the first Quaker cooperative in the United States.

February 01, 2013

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Friends Western School
524 East Orange Grove Boulevard, Pasadena, CA  91104
(626) 793-2727
Last modified Friends Western School is a Private school that serves grades K-6
Friends Western School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 52 reviews. Top