Architectural Digest: Church Farm School ‘Most Beautiful Private High School in Pennsylvania’

Image via Betsy Barron Photography.

The Church Farm School – an independent boarding and day school for boys in grades 9-12 in Exton – has been named “The Most Beautiful Private High School in Pennsylvania” by Architectural Digest, a leading design and architecture magazine since 1920.

The write-up notes the school’s Chapel of the Atonement as a significant structure, which was designed by famed Philadelphia architect Milton Medary and completed in 1928.

Expanded in 1964, the Chapel is designed in what is known as a monastic or collegiate style, where the pews face each other, and not the altar.

The walls are constructed of stones unearthed from the farmland by the students.

The school’s iconic Chapel of the Atonement – so iconic that it became the official school logo five years ago – is a space inhabited by the school community in various ways each year, including:

  • twice-weekly services on Wednesdays and Sundays
  • speaker talks
  • performances by the CFS Choir and other musical groups
  • the school’s annual “Why the Chimes Rang” Christmas Pageant
  • convocation
  • commencement

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Most events are open to the public.

“We are extremely honored to have been recognized for the beauty of our campus, and most especially, our Chapel, which celebrates its 90th birthday this year. We hope more of the community can schedule a tour to see the great work we are doing within these walls firsthand,” said The Rev. Edmund K. Sherrill II, Church Farm School’s Head of School.

One hundred years ago on April 1, 1918, The Rev. Charles Wesley Shreiner moved five boys recruited from West Philadelphia churches onto a dilapidated Chester County farm in Glen Loch (now Exton) with the goal of creating an Episcopal boarding school for fatherless boys, a school in which students would perform farm work to finance their educations.

A century of backbreaking work, carefully planned growth, and brilliant fundraising was set in motion and coalesced to create the school of today, where nearly 200 young men “of promise and ability” attend high school and graduate to attend some of the nation’s finest colleges and universities.

Last fall, all members of the Class of 2017 headed to competitive colleges – including Johns Hopkins, Brown, Yale, Middlebury, Williams, Bates, and Villanova – with more than $3,000,000 in grants and scholarships.

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