Picking the right private school for your child is one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make as a parent, but it doesn’t have to be the most stressful. Philadelphia and its surrounding areas are bursting with fantastic private school options from pre-school to high school. With religious-based and nonsectarian options, there is bound to be a school that lines up perfectly for you and your family.

Here are some of the area’s top private school options.

High Schools


Germantown Friends School

Vastly considered one of the best private schools in the state, Germantown Friends School is a Quaker, co-ed, day school located in the Germantown section of Philadelphia. Germantown Friends has a graduation rate of 100% and offers small classroom sizes with an average student-to-teacher ratio of 5:1. Not only does the school have a great STEM program, but they also offer 13 sports and a whopping 74 extracurriculars. Additionally, a January or “J-Term” is also offered which is a month-long program of mini-courses that “provides teachers and students a space for experimentation, investigation, and reflection.”

St. Joseph’s Preparatory School

St. Joe’s Prep is one of the most well-known Catholic, all-boys schools in the area. Located right in the heart of Philadelphia, the city offers a unique campus experience for students and teachers alike. The Prep believes “students get TWO educations—one in the classroom, and one from the world around them—both create bright, passionate and well-spoken young men, prepared to take on college and the world!” Their student body of almost 900 has a graduation rate of 100% and is offered 17 AP courses, 22 sports, and 32 extracurriculars. Formal attire of coat and tie is required.

Friends Select School

Located right in Center City, Friends Select is a Quaker, co-ed school that is easily accessible by public transportation or walking. The school sees the city as its classroom and wants its students to feel part of the city’s fabric. Recently, the school has extended its campus to now include a new STEAM building for the Upper School.  With a diverse student body of about 600, the average student-to-teacher ratio of 7:1 help aid in the school’s 100% graduation rate.

William Penn Charter School

Located on a vast 44-acre campus in East Falls, William Penn Charter is a co-ed Quaker school with a graduation rate of 100%. Founded in 1689, it has a rich tradition of higher education in the area and offers 14 AP courses and 18 sports. For those who qualify, the school also offers needs-based financial aid programs.

Springside Chestnut Hill Academy

If you’re looking for a school with a sprawling campus, look no further than Springside Chestnut Hill Academy. This co-ed, non-sectarian school is situated on a 62-acre campus in Chestnut Hill. Despite a larger student body of almost 1,200 students, the average classroom size is around 15 students. Students are offered 13 AP courses, 17 sports, and 16 extracurriculars. School attire and uniform vary on grade level.

Bucks County

George School – Newtown

This Quaker school has been a staple in Bucks County since 1893 and houses grades 9-12. A co-ed boarding and day school, George School offers 20 AP courses and 25 sports teams. Diversity is a strong suit of George School, with 44 countries and 20 states represented in their student body. Per their website, George School is also one of a few US boarding schools that offer an International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program; a challenging two-year curriculum that takes place during junior and senior years.

Solebury School – New Hope

Solebury School in New Hope is a non-sectarian co-ed private school founded in 1925. Their aim is to have their students and faculty pursue learning as an exciting, shared endeavor. Offering 11 AP courses, 17 sports teams, and 21 extracurriculars, Solebury School also boasts a 100% graduation rate. The average class size is around 11 students with a 6:1 student-teacher ratio.

Holy Ghost Prep – Bensalem

One of the best all-boys Catholic prep schools in the area, Holy Ghost attracts students from almost 100 different elementary and middle schools in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Families can expect a student body of around 430 with 16 sports and 20 AP classes offered. Formal attire consisting of blazers, ties, and pants is required.

Villa Joseph Marie High School – Holland

Villa Joseph Marie is one of the highest-rated Catholic schools in the area. This all-girls school has a student-to-teacher ratio of 8:1 and 100% of its graduates go on to four-year colleges. Students are offered 22 AP courses, 15 sports, and 21 extracurriculars. Uniforms are required.


The Baldwin School – Bryn Mawr

Known for being one of the top private, all-girls schools in the area, The Baldwin School has been a cornerstone for higher education in Montco since 1888. The school lists its mission as being a college preparatory school that “develops talented girls into confident young women with vision, global understanding, and the competency to make significant and enduring contributions to the world.” Students are offered an array of courses including computer science and engineering, languages, mathematics, and fine arts. 14 sports teams are also offered.

The Hill School – Pottstown

The Hill School is a co-ed, non-sectarian day and boarding school with a reputation for having a close learning environment. 80% of its student body are boarders with many coming from Canada, China, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Viet Nam.  In addition to the 28 AP courses offered, The Hill School also has 21 sports available to its students.

The Haverford School – Haverford

With almost 140 years of experience in higher education, The Haverford School has become a top choice as an all-boys, non-sectarian school in the area. With a diverse student body of over 900, The Haverford School offers a competitive yet engaging learning environment. The average class size is around 16 students with a student-teacher ratio of 8:1. The school also offers 18 sports and 34 extracurriculars.

Friends Central School – Wynnewood

Friends Central is a co-ed, Quaker school sprawled across 41 acres and two campuses in Wynnewood. It has a graduation rate of 100% and a 6:1 student-teacher ratio. In addition to multiple AP courses offered, one of the highlights of the Upper School program is its Distinguished Lecture Series which welcomes well-known scholars to campus for courses and lectures.


Hunterdon Preparatory School – Califon

With a student body of less than 100, Hunterdon Preparatory School offers an intimate co-ed, non-sectarian private school option in Hunterdon County. According to its website, students are placed into homerooms that fit them chronologically, socially, and emotionally. The school offers an array of enrichment activities as well as a student internship program where students can prepare for a career after graduation.

Our Hope Christian Academy – Ringoes

Our Hope Christian Academy is a co-ed, Christian school that serves students from pre-K to twelfth grade. Known for its small class sizes, Our Hope also offers learning support programs for students with dyslexia and language-based or mild learning differences. Five sports and two extracurriculars are also offered.

Elementary Schools


Nazareth Academy

Originally founded by the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth in 1941, Nazareth Academy Grade School is a co-ed, Catholic school whose mission is “to create an environment of love that inspires each student to grow and develop to his/her full potential.” The school offers a STEM program where students can participate in area competitions such as the Villa Joseph Marie H.S. Sciathon and the Pennslyvania Science Olympiad. There are also extensive fine arts and athletic programs available to their student body of almost 200.

The Philadelphia School

For a school with a progressive approach, The Philadelphia School is a co-ed, non-sectarian option with many unique characteristics. For its kindergarten through 8th-grade students, the school offers a “City-Country Classroom” where students spend one day a week during the fall or spring at one of their many outdoor classrooms within city limits. Class sizes are smaller in size, averaging about 10 students per class.

St. Peter’s School

Nestled in the Society Hill neighborhood, St.Peter’s School has become an area favorite for many families. Hosting pre-K through 8th graders, St. Peter’s is a co-ed non-sectarian school with less than 200 students. Students have options to participate in the school’s four’s sports programs and 14 extracurricular activities. According to their website, the school adopted a new Racial Literacy Curriculum by Pollyana, which “aims to broaden our students’ knowledge around inclusion and compassion by providing perspectives of those similar and different to their own.”

Community Partnership School

Founded in 2006 through a partnership between Project H.O.M.E and Germantown Academy, Community Partnership School is dedicated to attending to the educational needs of children in the underserved North Central Philadelphia neighborhood. This co-ed, non-sectarian school offers grades pre-K through fifth and “collaborates with families to maximize each child’s potential.”


Plumstead Christian School – Plumsteadville

Plumstead Christian School is a Christian, co-ed school that offers schooling for pre-K through 12th grade, which is a great option for families who don’t want to switch school systems as their child ages. The student body is separated into two different campuses. Pre-K through fifth grade is located at the Lower School in Chalfont, while grades 6 through 12 are located at the upper school in Plumsteadville.

Newtown Friends School – Newtown

While Newtown Friends School is rooted in Quaker beliefs, they embrace students from all religious backgrounds, races, and nationalities. This co-ed K-8 school boasts small classroom sizes of 16 students with an 8:1 student-to-teacher ratio. They offer 6 sports including basketball, cross country, and equestrian, and 13 extracurriculars including ballet, Chinese, and robotics.

River Valley Waldorf School – Upper Black Eddy

A highly-rated private school in Upper Bucks County, the River Valley Waldorf School overlooks the Delaware River and is surrounded by 7 1/2 acres of fields and woodlands. This non-sectarian school offers pre-K as well as grades K-8. Their average class size is around 11 students and has a student body of less than 200. Their mission statement on the school’s website reads: “Our holistic education is based on social renewal, a kinship with nature, high academic standards, and a full complement of the arts.”

Our Lady of Grace – Penndel

A popular co-ed Catholic option in Bucks, Our Lady of Grace has been a great option for area families since 1923. With a student body of less than 200, Our Lady of Grace offers small classroom sizes and an average 13:1 student-teacher ratio. The school also offers 3 extracurriculars including a digital media club, NJHS, and a yearbook club. According to the school’s website, “OLG provides a safe and vibrant environment where the community is family”.


Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary – Lower Gwynedd

Founded in 1861, Gwynedd-Mercy Academy has garnered a reputation for being one of the top choices for families looking for a co-ed, Catholic education for their children. Technology is at the forefront of many of the school’s endeavors and has been integrated across their curriculum and classrooms. From kindergarten to eighth grade, their students participate in an integrated STEM curriculum and are encouraged to think analytically, critically, and creatively.

The Miquon School – Conshohocken

A great option for a non-sectarian, progressive approach to education, The Miquon School is a co-ed school that offers pre-K through sixth grade. The school’s philosophy and educational program are built to “very intentionally provides children with a balance of structure and flexibility.” Ideas such as “children learn by doing”, and “learning occurs in ways unique to each child” are part of their “Ten Tenants” structure of beliefs. Classroom sizes are small, with an average student-to-teacher ratio of 7:1.

Plymouth Meeting Friends School – Plymouth Meeting

With only about 100 students in grades pre-K through sixth, Plymouth Meeting Friends School offers an intimate learning experience, with small classroom sizes and plenty of teacher interaction. This Quaker, co-ed school offers two sports and six extracurriculars. Spanish is taught in all grades, and for over 50 years the 5th-grade students have participated in a Mexican exchange program with a bilingual school in Cuernavaca, Mexico.

Ancillae-Assumpta Academy – Wyncote, PA

A co-ed Catholic school, Ancillae-Assumpta Academy has a student body of close to 600 across grades pre-K through 8th. Their preschool and kindergarten offer a Montessori experience, grades 1-4 work with both offline and online coding, and their middle school and junior high students are involved in the fine arts, athletics, and STEM.


Immaculate Conception School – Annandale

A popular choice in the area, Immaculate Conception is a co-ed, Catholic elementary school where faith is at the center of its curriculum. Offering grades pre-K through 8th, student-to-teacher ratios range anywhere between 10:1 and 15:1. The school also offers four sports including archery, basketball, cheering, and ultimate Frisbee.

Acorn Montessori School – Lebanon

Based on the Montessori educational philosophy, Acorn Montessori School is set on a five-acre campus with classrooms spread across five buildings. The school also features flower and vegetable gardens and age-specific playground areas. Acorn Montessori is co-ed and non-sectarian and offers grades pre-K through sixth grade and admits students as young as 18 months.



Chesterbrook Academy Pre-School

This preschool located at Drexel University offers flexible full-time and part-time options for busy parents. Students learn valuable computer skills and have lessons in math, literacy, science, and Spanish. Lunch and two snacks are provided daily and are included in the price of tuition.

St. Mary’s Nursery School

St. Mary’s Nursery School has been a popular option for families in the city since the 1960s. Although located in the same building as St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, the nursery school is non-denominational. Teachers put an emphasis on students collaborating with one another and solving problems as partners.

Amigos – Spanish Immersion Pre-School

One of the more unique options in the city, Amigos is one of the only fully immersive Spanish preschools in Philadelphia. All of the teachers are native Spanish speakers and every lesson is taught in Spanish in order to help the children learn the language more naturally. Amigos offers flexibility for working parents with drop-offs as early as 7:30 AM and pick-ups as late as 5:30 PM.


Christian Life Academy of Early Learning – Bensalem

With enrollment options for children as young as one, Christian Life Academy is a great option for parents who want to start their child’s education early. Their enrollment goes up to kindergarten and offers before-school and after-school care options. This Christian school also partners with Bucks County Intermediate Unit to provide services to children who need learning support.

Childtowne Montessori School – Southampton

Based on the primary pillars of Montessori education, Childtowne offers a self-directed learning environment where their teachers serve as facilitators of learning. They offer Pre-Primary classes starting at age two, Primary classes for ages three to six, and Kindergarten classes; each built on individualized learning. The average student-to-teacher ratio is 9:1 and they also offer summer school programs.

Shir Ami Early Learning Center – Newtown

Located in Newtown, Shir Ami is a Jewish early childhood education center and daycare. Per their website, they have both a learning specialist and family counselor on staff and offer weekly field trips and unique in-house programs. Shir Amir also offers three extracurriculars including a soccer club, a karate club, and a yoga club. If students live within a 10-mile radius of Shir Ami, busing is provided by the local school district.


The Malvern School of Horsham – Ambler

The Malvern School of Horsham is a long-time area favorite. They offer programs from infancy all the way to kindergarten and even after-school care. The staff is dedicated to helping young children reach their highest potential through enriching activities to stimulate their growth in cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development. The Malvern School is co-ed and non-sectarian.

Good Shepherd Catholic Regional School – Ardsley

Good Shepherd is a co-ed, Catholic school that offers preschool programs for three and four-year-olds. The preschool is dedicated to instilling the joy of learning while also acknowledging that every child is unique. According to their website, their curriculum “utilizes a combination of play and structured learning.” Lessons cover faith and values, basic number systems, language concepts, and computer instruction among others.

 The Goddard School – Huntingdon Valley

Another favorite of local families, The Goddard School is known for its small classroom sizes and warm environment. Co-ed and non-sectarian, The Goddard School offers programs for babies as young as six weeks old up through kindergarten age. Reviews on their website show families enjoy the comfort of the school alongside the attentive staff.


Whitehouse Preparatory School – Whitehouse Station

Founded in 2009, the Whitehouse Preparatory School has become a staple of early education in the area. Its programs include Preschool 1 for ages two and a half to three and a half, Preschool 2 for ages three to four, and Junior Kindergarten for children four to five with before and after-school programs also available. Their website explains that their programs “go beyond the classroom environment and integrate music, language, arts, theater, physical education, gardening, and many more special programs to create a well-rounded learning environment.” They also offer extracurricular activities like dance, karate, and sports.

Acorn Montessori School – Lebanon

Listed above as an option for a private elementary school, Acorn Montessori also offers great preschool programs as well. Its toddlers’ program is open to “independent walkers” to children three years of age, and its primary program is geared towards ages three to kindergarten age. There are half-day options that end before lunchtime and full-day options where the children stay into the afternoon. Their website describes a typical day in their primary program as one where “children receive group, as well as individual lessons, through the support and guidance of Montessori certified teachers.”

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