Our Mission

Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.

Our Vision and Values

Relationships and Community
We treasure the respectful ways students, teachers, staff, parents and alumni come to know one another through their work and studies, empowering each individual and our community with hope and possibility. We understand how history, culture and society shape our individual and shared experiences, and we appreciate how our unique identities develop through our relationships with others, our own inner lives, our surroundings and the world of ideas. Our school nurtures authenticity and trust as we inspire each student to be a creative citizen, capable and dedicated to upholding Parker’s mission.

Inclusivity and Dignity
We are deliberately composed of a diverse group of people committed to equity and inclusion throughout the school. We create learning experiences through curriculum and pedagogy that resonate with the many different identities that our community comprises, making us effective citizens who honor the dignity of every human being. We are an intimate and expansive school that affirms the ways students can flourish when they feel known, appreciated and supported by equitable access to the fullness of a Parker education. Our school thrives when we each can acquire and contribute to the creation of new knowledge and skills; explore our imaginations and different perspectives; share who we are becoming; and expect to be treated with respect and kindness when expressing our own ideas, popular or not, while also learning to confront behaviors that oppress, exclude or demean the humanity of others.

Engagement and Creativity
We pursue educational excellence by cultivating creative problem-solving through vigorous effort so all can experience joy in learning and come to understand how individual and collective labor can improve society. We grow in intellectual, emotional, physical, aesthetic and moral life through our attuned approaches to responsive teaching and mentoring. We learn from one another as we participate fully in spirited, rigorous, reflective and ethical engagement in all areas of study and activity, curricular and extracurricular. We seek purpose, meaning and impact through the content and methods that inform our learning and teaching. Our academic and artistic standards for interdisciplinary inquiry flow from classroom learning to life throughout the school and beyond.
Openness and Growth
We believe growth in understanding, ability and confidence occur when we are open to new questions, perspectives and information; when we act with respect, civility and curiosity as we make reasoned judgments; when we speak in our own voices; and when we listen attentively to the voices of others. We know that our ability to think for ourselves expands when we engage in healthy, nuanced discussion and persevere with integrity when complexity, uncertainty and ambiguity challenge us. Our educational vision leads us to create transformational opportunities to stretch beyond current achievements and points of view, opening us to learn from both our successes and our failures through attentive reflection and open conversation.

Responsibility and Collaboration
We hold that a Parker education is a privilege that carries responsibility and accountability. We call on all to participate with self-discipline, independence of mind and a collaborative spirit in keeping with the mission, values and vision of our school. We expect each of us to come prepared to learn and support Parker’s progressive approach to education, human development and community life. Our purpose is to inspire all to apply their skills, thoughts and values to make our school and the world more just, beautiful and interesting.

Character and Citizenship
The people of Francis W. Parker School encourage one another to exercise personal and civic power by connecting reflection with action, research with creativity, wisdom with innovation, deeds with consequences and character with citizenship. In these ways, Parker stands as a progressive school, dedicated to the growth and development of the whole person in relation to the growth and development of the whole school community, on behalf of our democratic society and the wider world.

Parent Partnership Agreement

As parents engaged in the education and development of Parker students…
Our goals are to communicate openly with the school and each other on behalf of our children; volunteer and participate in the life of the school; and contribute financially to support the school at whatever level we are able in its effort to provide an excellent education for its students.
As members of the Parker community...
We appreciate that education thrives when parents trust the school, the students and other parents with a spirit of open-mindedness, a respect for diversity and generosity with time, ideas and resources.
As adults…
We know that children listen to our words and watch our actions to better understand how they relate to teachers, students and other adults throughout the school.

Diversity Statement

Francis W. Parker School strives to uphold its mission to educate for character and citizenship by recognizing and respecting all members of the community in all areas of school life. Founded on the belief that diversity enriches learning and that a diverse community benefits everyone, the school is deliberately composed of a diverse group of people so that we may learn how to honor the dignity and experience of every human being.

Parker strives to create a safe and inclusive environment where students learn to have courageous conversations about differences in experiences, opinions, ideas, interests and identities that shape humanity. Parker also aims to cultivate a school community that teaches with sensitivity about differences including, but not limited to, race, sex, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, political and social values, culture, gender identity, religion, physical ability and learning style.

At Francis W. Parker School, we believe, as part of a global world, we must teach students about diversity to strengthen their capacity to relate to one another so they may learn to treat others with respect and kindness and challenge behaviors that oppress, exclude or demean the humanity of others.

Parker’s commitment to diversity informs its approach to admissions and hiring; its support of financial assistance to families of varying socioeconomic means; and its belief in the importance of developing the school’s curriculum, community and culture in ways that connect our students’ experiences with our broader society and with the wider world.
Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.