Letter from Michael Turner - Winter/Spring 2023

The Shipley sisters’ daring vision for education is alive and well. While our campus and student body look quite different now compared to 1894, the pursuit of educational excellence through a profound sense of care and respect for every individual remains the same. This attentiveness to each individual’s unique gifts, challenges, and journey is an essential part of what defines and binds the Shipley community.

Today, we have educational research and health data to confirm what the Shipley sisters sensed—close relationships and connections within school are critical in helping young people thrive. We explore this and the other ways schools play a vital role in promoting adolescent mental health in the “Meeting of the Minds” article.

While the word “community” gets used a lot in independent schools, too often it is undefined, associated with “soft” skills, or held separate from success in academics, the arts, or athletics. At Shipley, the concepts of a connected community, individual attentiveness, and student achievement are vitally and inextricably linked.

That’s why community building has been a focus at Shipley this year. As you’ll read about in the contents of the Winter/Spring 2023 magazine, our efforts have gone far beyond planning events like Super Saturday and the Swamp Night Pep Rally. Changes in the dining halls, adjustments to the schedule, new field trips, and shifts in our advisory program have all served to deepen connection and relationship-building.

In addition, through our focus on social emotional knowledge and skills in our Social Emotional and Ethical Development (SEED) classes, we equip students with the concepts and tools they need to thrive—to be resilient, high-impact, compassionate participants in an ever-shifting world.

I can think of no better place to be a young person than Shipley.


The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.