Middle School Building Renovation Slated for Summer 2023
January 30, 2023
Thirteen years ago this September, Friends Academy opened a fully renovated Lower School wing. Those of us who have had children in the Lower School during the intervening years have benefited from the vision and generosity of those who came before us. Their foresight and financial commitment created spaces that are warm, inviting, understated, and wonderful for children; they still serve us well.
Today, we are excited to announce that – thanks to the commitment of a small group of leadership donors – we are poised to renovate the Middle School building this summer.
The Stites Building, named for the late Clay Stites, has housed the Middle School for the last 30 years. Clay Stites served as the Head of School at Friends Academy from 1977 to 1991. Clay’s impact is still felt on our campus today in both large and small ways. For example, greeting one another each morning at drop off with a handshake or fist bump is a tradition that started with Mr. Stites more than 40 years ago.
While adequate in terms of total square footage, the Stites Building does not meet the needs of our sixth, seventh, and eighth graders or the Middle School program. Just as with the Lower School renovation in 2010, we are committed to creating a warm, intentional space for the Middle School students of today and tomorrow with this transformative project.
In partnership with a generous group of early donors, today we have $2.3 million in hand toward our goal of $2.8 million.
Thank you to our community members for partnering with us to achieve this goal for the current and future needs of our great school community, as we remember and thank those who have come before us. We are well positioned for our next decade, and quite frankly, there has never been a better time to be a Falcon!
Take a look at the renderings below to learn more about how we plan to re-envision the Stites Building.
Main (Upper) Level
The main level of the renovated Middle School will host four new rooms for small group instruction and offices. By removing the center staircase and existing bathrooms, there will be a larger common space with lockers for students.
The four classrooms on the Lower Level will have movable walls to allow for larger community gatherings. A translucent floor on the Main Level will bring lots of natural light into the expanded common space.