Sandy Spring Friends School



Weekly Newsletter

The weekly e-newsletter is emailed to all SSFS families each Sunday afternoon during the school year with news, photos, upcoming events, and "must-know" info. Click the Lower School, Middle School, or Upper School sections below for division-specific information and articles. You can also filter articles within each section by clicking on specific categories such as arts, parents association, special events, and more. Archived newsletters are also available here.

All School News

The calendar information below is for all-schoolmulti-divisional, and/or Parent Association events and activities in the coming weeks. Please see the Lower SchoolMiddle School, or Upper School sections for division-specific "must-know" info, or visit the Calendar web page to see the full calendar. 

And coming up soon/to keep on your radar...

  • Fri, Nov. 1: Last Day of 1st Quarter; NO LOWER SCHOOL CLASSES (Parent-Teacher Conferences); MS and US in session
  • Mon, Nov. 4: NO MS/US SCHOOL CLASSES - Professional Day. Lower School in session.
  • Sat, Nov. 9: PA FriendsFest, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm - Sign up to volunteer and find out more here!

Lower School News

Below is information about upcoming LS and all-school activities and events in the coming weeks. For questions or more information about an event, please contact Pam Gilmer, LS Administrative Assistant, at ext. 112 or, or visit the Calendar web page to see full calendar.

  • Tues, Oct. 22: PK4/K to Sharp's at Waterford Farm
  • Tues, Oct. 22: Parents Association Meeting, 6:00 pm, followed by the Open Forum with Head of School Tom Gibian at 7:15 pm, Yarnall. All parents are welcome and encouraged to come! Childcare and food provided. Please RSVP here.
  • Wed, Oct. 23: LS Parent-Teacher Conferences, 2:45-5:00 pm (Sign up for conference times here)
  • Thurs, Oct. 24: 2nd Grade field trip to Philips Museum
  • Thurs, Oct. 24: 3rd Grade to Skyline Caverns
  • Thurs-Fri, Oct. 24-25: 5th Grade Camping Trip
  • Fri, Oct. 25: Science Exploration Hour, 8:30 – 9:30 am, Preschool/Kindergarten: Parents/Guardians of PK3, PK4, and Kindergarten students are invited to come see what their little scientists have been up to in the classroom, and find out more about the KODO curriculum. 
  • Fri, Oct. 25: 5th Grade Parent Potluck
  • Sat, Oct. 26: LS Halloween Carnival Sponsored by the Junior Class, 2:00-4:00 pm, Yarnall Lobby
  • Sat, Oct. 26: 4th Grade Parent Potluck
  • Mon, Oct. 28: 1st Grade to Baltimore Museum of Industry

And coming up soon/to keep on your radar...

LS Halloween Carnival - Sat, Oct. 26

The Junior class is hosting a Halloween Carnival for all Lower School students! The day will include games, crafts, and food with friends. Get ready to enjoy the activities on Saturday, October 26th from 2:00-4:00pm in Yarnall Lobby. Tickets will be available for purchase at the festival ($1 for 4 tickets). Can’t wait to see you at this fun community event! See flyer...

Read More about Sat, Oct. 26: Halloween Carnival for Lower School Students
Middle School Info Night for Current SSFS LS Families

SSFS 5th grade parents were recently sent an email invitation for the Middle School Information Night, which will be held on Tuesday, November 5, from 6:30-8:00 pm in the Middle School. Parents will be provided a light supper while they meet David Blake and members of our Middle School faculty and staff to learn about our programs and tour some classrooms. Please RSVP by October 29th using the link provided in the email invitation. Contact Erin Ryan, Middle School Administrative Assistant, at x160 or with any questions.

Read More about Tues, Nov. 5: 5th Grade Parents Invited to Middle School Information Night

Middle School News

Below is information about upcoming MS and all-school activities and events in the coming weeks. For questions or more information about an event, please contact Erin Ryan, MS Administrative Assistant, at ext. 160 or, or visit the Calendar web page to see full calendar.

And coming up soon/to keep on your radar...

  • Fri, Nov. 1: End of 1st Quarter
  • Sat, Nov. 2: 8th Grade Parent Potluck
  • Mon, Nov. 4: NO MIDDLE SCHOOL CLASSES, Professional Day 
  • Wed-Fri, Nov. 6-8: 8th Grade Fall Signature Trip to NYC
  • Sat, Nov. 9: PA FriendsFest, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm - Sign up to volunteer and find out more here!
  • Mon, Nov. 11: Middle School Winter Sports/Electives Begin
MS Grandfriends Day

The Middle School is excited to be hosting Grandfriends Day this Friday, October 25! For those of you who are new to the community, Grandfriends Day is a bi-annual tradition where our Middle School students get to welcome their grandparents (or surrogate older adult) to visit during the school day. The Grandfriends are treated to a light breakfast, followed by a campus tour and classroom visits. Their time on campus concludes with a special lunch featuring some student performances and Meeting for Worship. The formal invitations were mailed, and RSVPs were due by October 16th. Please contact our Advancement office with any questions.

Read More about Middle School Grandfriends Day is THIS FRIDAY, Oct. 25
MS Athletics and Electives

Our Middle School Fall Sports and Electives season ends on Friday, October 25th! The Winter season will begin on Monday, November 11th, and students are in the process of making their selections. Just a friendly reminder to parents that dismissal for students will be at 3:40 pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday during the Weeks of October 28th and November 4th.  Aftercare is always available during these gap times between sports/electives seasons!

Read More about Fall Sports and Electives End on Friday, October 25th
NYC - 8th Grade Trip

Full details about the eighth grade’s trip to New York City were recently emailed to parents. Students will be spending the three days bonding with classmates and enhancing their classroom learning with visits to Ellis Island, the Tenement Museum, and the Museum of Mathematics. If your child needs medicine or has health issues that will need to be addressed while on the trip, please contact Andrea Strom in the Health Center. Any medication to go on the trip must be brought to the Health Center by a parent or guardian no later than Wednesday, October 31. We’re looking forward to a great trip!

Read More about Eighth Grade is Heading to NYC on November 6!

Upper School News

Below is information about upcoming US and all-school activities and events in the coming weeks. For questions or more information about an event, please contact Kerry Foley, US Administrative Assistant, at ext. 109 or, or visit the Calendar web page to see full calendar. 

  • Mon, Oct. 14: NO SCHOOL - FALL BREAK
  • Wed, Oct. 16: 1:00 pm Early Dismissal for Professional Development (see below for grade-specific events from 8:00 am - 1:00 pm)
    • Wed, Oct. 16: PSAT for 10th and 11th Grade
    • Wed, Oct. 16: 12th Grade College Application Workshop and College Rep Visits (see Maia Learning for list), Yarnall Library
    • Wed, Oct. 16: 9th Grade Service and Diversity Workshop
  • Mon, Oct. 21: Upper School Intersession Surveys DUE for grades 10-12 (find out more...)

And coming up soon/to keep on your radar...

  • Tues, Oct. 22: Parents Association Meeting, 6:00 pm, followed by the Open Forum with Head of School Tom Gibian at 7:15 pm, Yarnall. All parents are welcome and encouraged to come! Childcare and food provided. Please RSVP here.
  • Thurs, Oct. 29: College Night for the Visual and Performing Arts, 6:30 PAC Studio B
  • Fri, Nov. 1: Last Day of 1st Quarter
  • Mon, Nov. 4: NO UPPER SCHOOL CLASSES - Professional Day
Upper School Intersession

Upper School Experiential Education Coordinator Sunshine Klein sent an email to all Upper School parents on Thursday, Oct. 10, with important information about the upcoming Intersession trip selection process for 2019-2020. (See the letter here.) Please remember that the Intersession Survey is DUE Monday, Oct. 21. Parent/guardian approval is needed for survey submission, and late submissions may result in students' not getting their preferred trip selection. Trip descriptions may be found online here.

Read More about Oct. 21: Upper School Intersession Survey Deadline
Upper School Parent-Teacher Conferences

Upper School Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held on Wednesday, November 6th and Wednesday, November 13th from 2:45- 5:00 pm in the Westview Dining Hall. We will utilize the online scheduling system, PTCFAST. Please note that we will not be able to accommodate any “walk-ins.” In order to access the PTCFAST system, please click here. Find out more about conferences here...

Read More about US Parent-Teacher Conference Sign-Up for Nov. 6 & 13
College Info Night - Visual and Performing Arts

ICYMI: On Tues, Oct. 29 at 6:30 pm in PAC - Studio B he SSFS College Counseling Office and Upper School Arts Department are hosting a panel discussion with college admissions representatives from four colleges and universities, focused on the application process for visual and performing arts. Topics will include visual art portfolio information and guidelines, performing arts supplements, and the admission process in arts programs. Students and families interested in the arts are welcome and encouraged to come! See flyer...

Read More about Tues, Oct. 29: College Info Night for Visual and Performing Arts
Quiz Bowl Team on It's Academic - Oct. 12, 2019

On Saturday, October 12th, the SSFS Quiz Bowl Team demonstrated continued academic excellence by advancing to the playoffs for the sixth time in seven years on It’s Academic. Inspired by a supportive crowd of ‘Beest Boosters and our beloved Wildebeest mascot, SSFS earned a commendable 510 points in defeating Paint Branch (365 points) and Bowie (220 points) to advance to the It's Academic playoffs. SSFS returns to the World MediaNet Studio at National Harbor to compete in the It’s Academic quarterfinals on Saturday, January 11th, at 1:45 pm against Poolesville and Georgetown Day high schools. Read more here...

Read More about SSFS Quiz Bowl Team Advances to It's Academic Playoffs Jan. 11
AP Environmental Science Class

Students in AP Environmental Science are studying human impacts on ecosystems. On Thursday and Friday, Oct. 17-18, classes participated in a lab which was a case study on Chestnut tree blight, caused by a fungus. Students modeled using a virus as a biocontrol on the fungus that is killing off Chestnut trees. They used gel electrophoresis to analyze DNA in order to track the spread of the virus, with the goal of using this information to contain the blight on Chestnut trees. See more photos here...

Read More about AP Environmental Science Classes Conduct DNA Analysis
Upper School 2019 Play: Radium Girls

ICYMI: Sandy Spring Friends School Upper School Presents: "Radium Girls" by D. W. Gregory, on November 15 and 16 @ 7:15 pm (Upper School Assembly Performance on November 14) in the Performing Arts Center. In 1926, radium was a miracle cure, and luminous watches the latest rage—until the girls who painted them began to fall ill with a mysterious disease. Inspired by a true story, Radium Girls traces the efforts of Grace Fryer, a dial painter, as she fights for her day in court. Rating: Parental Guidance is suggested as the play deals with adult topics. Find out more... 

Read More about Nov. 15-16: Upper School Production of "Radium Girls"

Friends Mart

SSMM Halloween Party
Michelle Yates

Sandy Spring Monthly Meeting is hosting a Simple Dinner and Halloween Party in the Lyceum at Sandy Spring Meeting House (17715 Meeting House Road Sandy Spring, MD, 20860) on Saturday, October 26. There will be a Potluck Chili Dinner at 6:00 pm (bring a side dish to share) followed by the 7:00 pm Halloween Party. See flyer here... 

Athletic Events This Week