In 1984, Dr. Laura Hathaway opened the doors to a brand new school with a group of 40 bright and gifted preschool students. She named her school Pegasus, challenging her children to “build wings so bright minds can soar." Dr. Hathaway recognized then that strong intellect demands nurturing and that children learn best when they are uniquely valued. At Pegasus, we are uniformly committed to this one goal: that each student can discover his/her talents and abilities, develop them, and then shine with confidence. It is knowing each child well and fostering each student’s individual passions that make The Pegasus School unique among its peers.
Today, The Pegasus School has grown into one of the largest independent pre-kindergarten through eighth grade schools in the United States — an exceptional educational institution where every student is inspired to excel in academics, in character, and in learning to lead lives of meaning and purpose. Ours is a compelling community driven by the many teachers and staff, parents, trustees, alumni and students who share a commitment to Dr. Hathaway’s extraordinary vision. Chief among our resources is a faculty distinguished by its talent, its experience, and its dedication to the education of bright and motivated young people.
The genius of our Founder, Dr. Hathaway, was in recognizing that a successful school must be a happy place, as well as a demanding place. She understood that for children to acquire knowledge, they must first be smitten by the romance of learning. As you look through the pages of our website, I trust you will find the challenge, the enrichment and the joy that we seek in our community of learners.
We look forward to your discovery of The Pegasus School. Come and visit us soon.
John H. Zurn
Head of School
Head of School
John Zurn was born in Erie, Pennsylvania and grew up in a family of nine outside of Philadelphia. He attended Meadowbrook School and William Penn Charter School, both independent schools in Philadelphia. John earned his bachelor’s degree in English at Williams College in Massachusetts and his master’s degree in Educational Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania.
After college, John returned for three years to his alma mater, Meadowbrook School, where he taught fourth, fifth and sixth grades. At various times, he also taught drama, middle school writing, physical education, coached a variety of sports and served as the school’s athletic director. From 1980 – 1982, he taught fourth grade at the American International School of Lisbon.
In 1982, John returned to the States to complete his master’s degree. While completing his degree, he worked at St. Peter’s School in downtown Philadelphia. After receiving his degree, he served as lower school director at the Woodlynde School in Strafford, Pennsylvania where he opened grades K - 5 in an existing grade 6 - 12 school.
In 1989, John was appointed headmaster at St. John’s Episcopal School, a K - 8 school in Olney, Maryland. Over a twenty year career there John led efforts to more than double the school’s enrollment. He raised funds and constructed wings that tripled the size of the plant space. He increased fundraising tenfold and worked with five board chairs to organize, educate, develop, and inspire trustees. John led St. John’s through three strategic planning processes and two ten -year accreditation cycles. He introduced Traits for Success, a school-wide character building program and initiated National Schools Research and Summer Grants Programs for faculty and administration development. He worked with faculty and administration to define core academic programs (reading, writing, math) as the leading edge of school success. He taught Environmental Studies, Writing, the American Revolution, and Student Leadership. He was instrumental in developing signature educational programs including Traits for Success, Global Citizenship, World Village, International Festival and Multi-Cultural Fair, Environmental Studies, Declamation Day Poetry Recitation, and Model UN.
In 2009, St. John’s Episcopal School was chosen by the National Association of Independent Schools as one of nineteen model independent schools across the world for its Global Education Resources Program. John began his tenure at The Pegasus School in July of 2010. He has served on several independent school and independent school association boards, and is the parent of two sons, Josh and Alexander. His passions include basketball, golf, art, sailing, travel, and the Philadelphia Phillies.