Olney Friends School, founded in 1837, is a small, co-educational boarding school for grades 9 through 12 located in Barnesville, Ohio, in the beautiful Appalachian foothills of southeastern Ohio.
The school provides an intellectually challenging college preparatory program in a supportive Friends community that promotes traditional Quaker values such as integrity and simplicity, while encouraging freedom of expression, creative thinking and acceptance of individual differences.
Olney Friends School's 70 students come from diverse international, religious, social and economic backgrounds. Course offerings include standard college preparatory courses (including AP classes), fine arts and a variety of electives. Every graduate is accepted into at least one college. Graduates of Olney Friends School are well prepared to enter college and the world of responsibilities and choices that await them.
Olney Friends Schools has enjoyed over 150 years of success in the field of educating young men and women. The school was founded in 1837 by the Ohio Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). This group of newly settled Ohio Quakers, most of whom migrated north in protest of the institution of slavery in the south, began plans for a boarding school for both boys and girls as early as 1814, to be modeled on Quaker boarding schools in Philadelphia. Finally, in 1835, the building of the school commenced and was opened for students two years later. This early school, which was simply known as the Friends Boarding School, was located at Mount Pleasant, Ohio, northeast of its current location. The name "Olney" was informally adopted from a poem entitled "Olney Green," written by Louis Taber, a visiting minister from Vermont and teacher at the school in the 1840s.
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