Mission & Philosophy

PCDS prepares promising students to become responsible leaders and lifelong learners through an education that emphasizes intellectual engagement, independence, collaboration, creativity, and integrity.

In keeping with its mission, Phoenix Country Day School expects its students to develop a coherent body of knowledge in the humanities, sciences, and the arts, and a comprehensive range of skills in athletics. Pursuing quality and excellence is fundamental to everything we do at PCDS. Excellence in the classroom is reflected in exceptional academic offerings. Excellence in athletics is reflected in a program that allows students to participate in and thus benefit from involvement in team sports. Excellence in the arts (visual studies, performing arts, music) is reflected in a program structure that allows time for study of and achievement in an area of interest. The balance of these areas and the lessons they offer create broad-thinking, well-rounded, intelligent students of character.

We introduce students to a curriculum that responds to the diverse and rapidly changing world where populations are living longer, interrelating in new ways, and using newly created technologies and new methods for communication. Students learn how to collaborate and how to be global thinkers; they develop excellent listening skills, maintain sensitivity to cultural backgrounds, and have an awareness of complicated and less-streamlined decision-making. It is through the clear objective of quality and excellence, combined with the fundamentals of an extraordinary education, that our students gain a foundation and appreciation for a lifetime of learning.

The Phoenix Country Day School community strives to be one in which each individual is recognized and valued, each voice is heard, and each considered opinion can find a forum. However, no forms of hatred, prejudice or bigotry are tolerated. We recognize the richness of the diverse threads that strengthen the fabric of the School. We endeavor to ensure that this fabric reflects the diversity of Arizona and our nation. We want every member of our School community to value diversity and respect one another.

We strive to graduate students who love learning and pursue wisdom; use their talents and skills for the greater good; are adaptable, resilient, and responsible citizens in their local communities, their nation, and the world; and who engage in life with both honor and integrity. These values and goals are essential components of a PCDS education: An Education for Life.

A Philosophy in Action

As the Valley’s only Pre-K through Grade 12 independent school since 1961, PCDS has always pushed itself to be at the forefront of student academic and personal growth. From our roots when May Sue Talley envisioned an “Exeter of the West,” to our current standing as a national leader in a progressive, student-centered experience, Phoenix Country Day School has always exhibited the best in independent school education: simultaneously staying true to our roots and traditions, while being nimble and forward thinking to prepare the world’s leaders of tomorrow.


Solid Foundation, Brighter Future

Each June at Graduation, PCDS welcomes back members of the Golden Circle, esteemed members of the PCDS family who graduated 50 or more years ago. The members of our first graduating class connect with our most recent graduates, and share their many stories and experiences of how PCDS has shaped their lives. The most common refrain from the members of the Golden Circle: “I can’t believe how far this place has come.”

Each June at Graduation, PCDS welcomes back members of the Golden Circle, esteemed members of the PCDS family who graduated 50 or more years ago...