Welcome to the Ethical Culture Fieldston School

It is the honor of my lifetime to have returned to the Ethical Culture Fieldston School as your Head of School after my previous tenure at the School from 1985–2002 as a teacher, administrator, and Assistant Principal of the Upper School. From the first ten minutes of teaching a sample biology lesson over 35 years ago, I recognized the unique and special environment that exists on these campuses, and I have always gained inspiration, direction, and vision from my close work with faculty, staff, students, and alumni. What I learned in my first 17 years at ECFS has served as the foundation for how I have approached my work as an educator ever since — it has been my north star.

The foundation of ECFS and the unique qualities that our School have embodied since its founding are still relevant today and are at the heart of who we are: 

  • A vibrant academic program that places students at the center of relevant, authentic, and intellectual experiences through a progressive pedagogy
  • The commitment of the entire community to ethics and how social justice intersects with academic purpose 
  • Our extensive range of co-curricular opportunities which allow students to pursue interests and develop passions, expanding their experiences into areas like athletics and the arts
  • The dedication of our faculty and staff to the mission of the School
  • The deep relationships formed between students and teachers, administrators, and staff, forging connections that will last a lifetime 
  • A diverse group of caring, connected, and proud alumni who are making an impact around the world across myriad professions

We remain focused on providing every student with an experience that is intellectually rich, collaborative, and full of creative, engaging experiences. We continue to help every student find their voice and realize their potential. With our unique ethical lens as context, we prepare and compel our students to take care of themselves and each other and to make an impact as they build a better world. 

As we look to the future and to celebrating our 150th anniversary in 2028, ECFS will continue to be a leader among independent schools by leveraging our august history and being innovative in how our progressive education manifests. By moving forward together, our School’s rich and glorious history can power ECFS into the future.

To learn more about this wonderful School that means so much to us all, you can read more about our curriculum here, see stories from daily campus life here, and explore our admissions process here.


Joe Algrant,
Head of School