Lower School FAQs
- What time is drop-off and pick-up in the Lower School?
- What opportunities do students in the Lower School have to engage with students in the other divisions on campus?
- How are students in the Lower School introduced to Quakerism?
- What kind of physical activity do Lower School students engage in daily?
Students can be dropped off at the Lower School as early as 7:30 am. From 7:30-8:00 am, students are supervised by teachers outside (or inside if the weather is inclement). At 8:00 am, students head to their classrooms. The official school day begins at 8:10 am. If arriving after 8:10 am, parents must come to the front desk of the Lower School to sign in their student. The school day ends at 3:10 pm, except on Wednesdays, when school is dismissed early at 2:10 pm. Students should be picked up between 3:15 and 3:30 pm on Mon, Tues, Thurs, and Fri, and between 2:15-2:30 pm on Wednesdays. Any student not picked up from carpool by 3:30 pm (2:30 on Wednesdays) will be sent to Aftercare (Kids After Hours), and drop-in fees will apply.
Sandy Spring Friends School is special in that students can start their SSFS education in preschool at age three, and stay through high school graduation after 12th grade. Because we have students in preschool through 12th grade all on the same campus, deliberate positive connections are able to be made between students in the Lower School and other divisions on campus. For example, our preschool through 1st grade students have Upper School “Senior Buddies.” Each student is paired with one or two members of the Senior class, and the groups get together to meet, play, and get to know one another at several regularly-scheduled times throughout the school year. In addition, Upper School interns volunteer hours within the Lower School each year, and Upper School math students participate in a Lower School/Upper School Math Buddy Program. Middle School students help run the Lower School Field Day in the spring, and Middle School committees also provide opportunities to get to know Lower School students. All-school events such as Community Day in the fall, Our People, Our Planet Day in the spring, and all-school assemblies and pep rallies throughout the year also provide opportunities for cross-divisional interactions.
Students in the Lower School are exposed to the Quaker principles of simplicity, peace, integrity, equality, and stewardship through daily dialogue within the classroom and monthly divisional themes. Many teachers are trained in a specific Quaker curriculum called Faith and Play, and are able to teach about varying aspects of the Quaker beliefs that support the educational philosophy of Sandy Spring Friends School. Students also participate in a weekly Meeting For Worship either in the Meeting House located on campus or within their classrooms.
Our beautiful campus lends itself to functioning as a natural outdoor laboratory and extension of the classroom, and teachers often have academic classes outside. In addition to participating in Physical Education classes during the week, students have a mid-morning snack break outdoors, a full recess after lunch, and additional breaks outside throughout the day.