Award Year: 2014

Norwood-Fontbonne Academy

8891 Germantown Avenue
Philadelphia, PA, 19118-2718

(215) 247-3811

Sr. Mary Helen Beirne SSJ, Ed.D, Principal at time of Nomination

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Norwood-Fontbonne Academy empowers students to become self-directed persons who live Gospel values, enjoy learning, make reflective choices, and treasure themselves, others, and the Earth.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 11%
  • White: 74%
  • Hispanic: 1%
  • Asian: 4%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 9%
NFA's Signature religion curriculum: seventh-graders engage their Montessori prayer partner.

NFA's Signature religion curriculum: seventh-graders engage their Montessori prayer partner.

Each and every day Norwood-Fontbonne Academy (NFA) chooses to be a school of excellence. As Philadelphia’s oldest Catholic, independent elementary school, NFA abounds with life, empowering students to lead, learn, and serve.

NFA’s students excel in unique learning spaces and through a Signature Curriculum which includes dual early childhood programs and a service-learning component. The Montessori program and Primary program for children ages three to third grade provide parents a choice for the different learners in their family. NFA’s service learning curriculum is not simply outreach or charity; it is a highly valued educational focus that begins in kindergarten and is rooted in Catholic Social Teaching and the mission of the Sisters of Saint Joseph. Classrooms at all levels exude energy as students are nurtured and challenged to be scholars. The highly qualified faculty offers students a unique level of wisdom, experience, and confidence by supporting those with learning needs and stretching the horizons of others.

NFA believes that family participation in a child’s education is essential for success. The staff engages parents consistently throughout the school year to ensure student progress. With nearly twenty-five events annually, the NFA Parents’ Association nurtures community among the school families.

Two-thirds of NFA’s seventh and eighth graders are annually named Johns Hopkins scholars. Graduates are actively recruited by top Catholic and independent high schools and matriculate to the nation’s best colleges. Proudly wearing the NFA colors of blue and gold, graduates validate NFA as a Blue Ribbon school of excellence.