About the Author

Pete Jaques (pronounced “jayks”) grew up in the ‘40s and ‘50s in the country north of Boston. It was a time of little educational innovation as the U.S. had many more pressing concerns. His education in small independent schools was traditional and insulated.

Pete’s horizons were considerably expanded once he got to Harvard College and especially after he launched his career in the crucible of the ‘60s anti-war era. Always drawn to kids, he found his way to working directly with them after six years of admissions and development work. Two months into his teaching career, he was appointed head of his middle school and soon came face to face with difficult problems. Inspired by Quaker beliefs and pedagogy and by the nascent national middle school revolution, he and his colleagues restructured and repurposed Moses Brown School’s middle division. The changes proved to be durable and have remained in place for four decades.

Immersed in that intense process, Pete developed a clear conviction about the full purpose of education: to equip young people with both the self-possession and skills to function confidently in all facets of their lives. Pete applied that principle through another thirty-plus years of leadership. Coming to believe that most problems in schools can be resolved by removing structural roadblocks, he emerged as a collaborative agent of change. Through the inevitable evolutions in pedagogical trends, his overriding objective has remained constant: to create sustainable school environments in which everyone, especially students, can flourish.

As a boy, Pete was deeply influenced by spending countless hours in fields and woods. Fifty years later, Pete knows that engaging students outdoors is crucial to sharpening their relationship with the Earth, especially given their ever more digitally driven lives and the world’s expanding climate crisis. Long aware of the need, he developed and taught environmentally focused social studies curricula for many years. A 47-year summer resident of Vinalhaven, Maine, he deeply appreciates that island’s rich natural environment and the exposure to it that its school provides. He is a committed birder and lately has become a fan of Greta Thunberg.

Pete Jaques
Lambertville NJ &  Vinalhaven ME


  • Interim Head of at Friends School Haverford and Princeton Friends School
  • 13 years as Assistant Head at Princeton Friends School and 16 as Middle or Upper School Head at Moses Brown School, Moorestown Friends School, Princeton Day School, and The Pennington School
  • 33 years teaching 3rd – 12th graders social studies, history and literature including A.P.  U. S. History; chaired social studies departments; developed curriculum at five schools
  • 22 years coaching, mostly football and softball
  • 4 years in college admissions at Case Western Reserve University and 2 years in development at Milton Academy
  • Developed and implemented faculty evaluation for growth systems in four schools
  • Created or significantly improved disciplinary systems and tone in four schools
  • Led three accreditation self-studies; served on three accreditation visiting committees, one 5-year review team, and one Friends Council on Education Membership Renewal Team; was appointed to the NJAIS Accreditation Committee; and ran one NJAIS annual conference
  • Co-authored the emergency management plan at Princeton Friends School
  • Appointed to three strategic plan steering committees, chairing two
  • 35 years of trustee service at Miss Hall’s School, Family Guidance Center, Alternatives Inc., Princeton YMCA, Creative Theatre Unlimited and the Advisory Committees of Princeton Friends School and Carrier Clinic Day School
  • 3 years in corporate outplacement as Vice President of Manchester Career Services
  • 4 years as owner and proprietor of his own residential design-build company


  • A.B. in American History, Harvard College 1966
  • Graduate coursework in history at Rutgers 1994-1996
  • Dozens of professional seminars, workshops, webinars, conferences


Married, six adult children, twelve grandchildren, active interest in birding, history, word puzzles, walking, golf, and poetry. Supporter of his wife’s three a cappella  groups & events.  Legal co-guardian to an incapacitated adult.