Why Choose Pre-K-8: Why Choose EFS

Why choose an independent school?

Independent schools are independently governed by their own boards of trustees. Independent school accreditation standards are rigorous and are validated by a national commission. Each has a distinct educational mission. Yet, they all share a commitment to achieving excellence and inspiring innovation. This commitment attracts high quality teachers and promotes a supportive learning environment.


Independent schools focus on educating the whole child, offering learning experiences that reach beyond core academic areas such as math, science, history, and English. They have the freedom to promote creative thinking in hands-on ways and to introduce students to exciting and challenging subjects including art, music, foreign languages, global and environmental education, and technology. Students come from diverse backgrounds to develop their interests—and a love of learning—at independent schools.


Findings from the U.S. Department of Education indicate that

  • Independent schools tend to be smaller than other schools, which often results in higher achievement for students.
  • Independent schools offer exceptionally low student-teacher ratios and thus more individual attention, responsible in part for greater success in college and future endeavors.
  • Teachers at independent schools are able to communicate consistent goals to their students and collaborate more effectively on raising student achievement.

Elmwood Franklin is proud to be an accredited member of the National Association of Independent Schools and the New York State Association of Independent Schools.

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Why choose a pre-K to eighth grade school?

“If I could design psychologically safe schools, every elementary school in the United States would go from kindergarten through grade eight and be no larger than four hundred students.” Michael Thompson, renowned child psychologist and author of best-sellers Raising Cain: Protecting the Emotional Life of Boys and Best Friends/Worst Enemies: Understanding the Social Worlds of Children

Elmwood Franklin School believes that its pre-K through 8th grade structure is among its greatest assets. From the teachers we hire to the facility we occupy and the curriculum we teach, our configuration allows us to focus on the unique needs of children ages 3-14 without the distractions and very different social and academic pressures faced by high school students. 

At EFS we know from a century of experience that this configuration allows us to:

  • Balance intellectual maturation and social-emotional growth in an environment that is both nurturing and academically rigorous
  • Know each student’s gifts and challenges and recognize individual development patterns and challenges. Our model allows us the flexibility to group and regroup students according to their needs.
  • Offer age-appropriate activities that allow children to stay children a little longer
  • Have a facility designed to fit the specific needs of children ages 3 to 14
  • Provide real leadership opportunities for young adolescents.  At a time when they are typically feeling caught in the middle between childhood and high school, students in grades 5 through 8 at EFS are captains of teams, leads in the plays, elected officials for student government, and role models for younger students, looked up to by all.
  • Hire faculty who understand the developmental needs of the children they teach and who believe that the relationships they foster with their students, both in the classroom and out, are crucial to each child’s confidence and success
  • Create a continuity of knowledge about each student over a long period of time and ease the trauma of transitions
  • Give children the time to discover who they are as students and people. EFS works closely with families to help them choose the right high school option at the right time. Our graduates go on to excel in the area’s best high school programs and are often recognized leaders in the classroom, student government, the arts, and athletics.

Focused exclusively on the developmental needs of children in pre-kindergarten through 8th grade, EFS is able to create an environment where children thrive. At graduation our students are the embodiment of the school’s mission: confident, self-motivated learners with a strong sense of responsibility to self and community.

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Why choose Elmwood Franklin School?

Finding the right environment for your child’s education makes a world of difference. At Elmwood Franklin School, you’ll find an environment that nurtures intellectual curiosity, stimulates personal growth, and encourages critical thinking and creativity. The reasons our families choose Elmwood Franklin are many:

  • At Elmwood Franklin School, self-discipline, responsibility, and self-motivation are among the benefits of an environment that is both nurturing and well-structured.
  • Elmwood Franklin School provides a framework of values upon which your child can develop character and a wholesome orientation toward life.
  • Elmwood Franklin School is an extension of your family. It provides a safe environment in which your child can explore ideas and feelings, and the guidance that ensures your child won’t get lost while exploring.
  • Elmwood Franklin School is small and so are the class sizes and student/teacher ratios. Teachers get to know every one of their students well — not just in the classroom, but on the athletic field, through dramatic productions, at “option” times, or during after school enrichment activities.
  • Elmwood Franklin School teachers tailor their teachings to each student. This allows your child to move ahead faster in areas of strength and receive the extra attention needed to master skills that are difficult for him or her.
  • Elmwood Franklin School students are bound by common goals and aspirations. Their intellectual curiosity is encouraged through an atmosphere in which academic achievement is valued and doesn’t conflict with social acceptance.
  • At Elmwood Franklin School your child is encouraged to participate in a variety of activities — sports, foreign language, outdoor education, dramatics, art and music. Such diverse experiences help your child not only to build self-confidence, but self-knowledge.
  • Elmwood Franklin School attracts teachers with initiative. They are well-educated, certified and highly committed. Most have master’s degrees and take advantage of continuing education opportunities provided by the school. Teachers are selected for their knowledge of a subject and their ability to teach it.
  • Elmwood Franklin School responds to your needs as a parent, providing services to make your life a little less complicated. These services include options for early arrival; extended day; Horizons, our after school enrichment program; and summer camp.
  • Elmwood Franklin School welcomes parent involvement. You participate in the social life of the school and help the school advance. You will find that when you enroll your child at Elmwood Franklin, you join the school family, too.
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© Elmwood Franklin School • 104 New Amsterdam Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14216 • Phone (716) 877-5035 • Fax (716) 877-9680