Initially founded in 1963 the school reopened as a single semester residential program in 2001 following a 4 year break period. The program runs for 16 weeks on 230 acres. Students participate in farm and ranch management while learning about peace, social justice and sustainability as well as many other topics such as advanced math. There are eight cabins that house 5 students each and 12 A-Frame cabins that house 2 students each, and all the cabins are heated with wood that the students help to bring to the living areas.
Each of the residential areas has a shower house. The simple Quaker pedagogy that the school endorses allows students to learn through active inquiry and reflection.
The John Woolman School costs $18,000 dollars for one semester and over 75% of students receive financial aid. The school is accredited and the courses are approved by the UC a-g system.
Admissions are based on not only academic achievement but also interest and engaging application essays. Prior knowledge of the subject matter is helpful but not required. The school’s mascot is the Wombat, a non-predator.