Upper School Director

  • Brentwood School
  • Los Angeles, CA, USA
Full Time Academia Education Executive Management Diversity

Job Description


Los Angeles, CA

Upper School Director

Opportunity Statement





Brentwood School in Los Angeles, California, is an independent, coeducational, college preparatory day school in the Brentwood neighborhood of west Los Angeles. The school, a community of 1200 Kindergarten through 12th Grade students and 150 faculty members, is situated on two campuses. The three-acre West Campus (K-6) is four blocks away from the original 28-acre East Campus (7-12). In its relatively short history of 49 years, Brentwood has grown into one of the premier independent day schools in California. The school enjoys an exceptionally strong national reputation for a rigorous academic program, combined with a commitment to nurture and support its students both personally and academically. This is an atmosphere charged by intellectual discovery and marked by a pride in the school that is shared by students, faculty, and parents alike.

Students describe a warm and caring atmosphere where they are known and valued as individuals. Embracing high standards of character, commitment, and achievement, Brentwood encourages students to think critically and creatively and to act ethically.

Brentwood School is fully accredited by the California Association of Independent Schools and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, and is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools, the California Association of Independent Schools, A Better Chance, and the Independent School Alliance for Minority Affairs.


Founded as a non-profit corporation in 1972, Brentwood School acquired the Brentwood Military Academy, which had existed on the land now known as Brentwood’s East Campus, and opened a co-educational, college preparatory day school with grades 6-10. Grade 11 was added in fall 1973 and Brentwood’s first senior class graduated in June 1975. In 1994, Brentwood purchased the nearby Marymount Junior School campus and opened a kindergarten through grade 6 campus in the fall of 1995.


Visitors to Brentwood’s two campuses are immediately struck by their beauty and warmth. The setting is a well-integrated blend of old and new buildings, red-tiled roofs, intimate courtyards, ivy-covered walls, and green fields.

Brentwood’s East Campus, housing grades 6-12, is situated on 28 acres with Mission-style historic buildings and sustainable landscaping. The Upper School facilities, including classrooms, laboratory space, a cafeteria, a bookstore, faculty and administrative offices, and courtyards, are located in a series of buildings built in an arroyo and into an adjacent hillside with sweeping views across Los Angeles to the ocean. A 28,000 square-foot science, library and performing arts center was completed in 1990 and the Eagle Center classrooms were recently renovated.

The 22-acre East Campus Athletics Complex was completed in 2001 and the Caruso Watt Aquatics Center opened in the spring of 2008. No other school in the Los Angeles area boasts such an expansive, state-of-the-art facility that encompasses such a wide variety of sports.

Lying at the base of the Santa Monica Mountains at the western edge of Los Angeles, the community of Brentwood is gracious and welcoming, with comfortable homes on leafy, well-maintained streets. Nearby neighborhoods and cities include Pacific Palisades, Santa Monica, Westwood, and Bel Air. The UCLA campus is directly east of the school about one mile. The Brentwood area is also home to the Getty Center, one of the world’s most comprehensive arts, conservation, and education institutions.


Brentwood School has always been a community where students and teachers know and care about each other. The closeness and longevity of these relationships is evident in the close ties many teachers still share with alumni/ae. The vibrant faculty draws on a wealth of teaching experiences. Fifty-nine faculty members have been at Brentwood for ten or more years and 91 hold advanced degrees.

Brentwood’s student body is diverse and lively. Students of color comprise 46% of the population and 120 zip codes are represented in the student body. Tuition for the 2021-2022 school year is $46,550 (grades 6-12) and Brentwood is strongly committed to an aggressive financial support program. The school has budgeted $7million annually for financial support, and 17% of the East Campusstudents receive financial support. With the school’s close proximity to three major freeways, Brentwood is easily accessible to students from a wide geographical area served by seven school bus routes, two shuttles, and an extensive carpool system.


We believe that every single person brings something unique to our community. Their background and personal experiences represent something different—a value added to our community. Our Office

of Equity and Inclusion considers how to best navigate our differences so that they can be shared and raised up throughout our school.


Equity is being conscious and cognitive of our efforts to best meet the needs of all members of our community. Inclusion means creating an environment where all participants and constituents are

valued and can be their best selves, irrespective of background, experience, and lifestyle. We do this with a variety of measures, policies, and programs. We do this through our curriculum—in what we teach and how we teach it. We work together as students, parents, faculty, and administration to maintain an inclusive community. All of this is motivated and inspired by our recognition that diversity is advantageous now, and in the future, because we believe that classroom experiences and social relationships that broaden, rather than replicate the ideas and experiences students bring with them from their home environments are critical to fostering cognitive and social growth.




The student-centered philosophies of learning and teaching, the emphasis on a broad-based and diverse liberal arts curriculum that is connected and sequential between grades and divisions, and the unwavering quest for excellence are all common features of the Brentwood K-12 experience. The school provides a core curriculum that is primarily traditional and classical emphasizing language, communication, mathematical reasoning, and computation. The goal of both curriculum and pedagogy is to foster intellectual curiosity, excitement for learning, and a desire to fulfill individual potential.



On the East Campus, the approximately 575 Upper School students learn to master the essential balance between skills and knowledge. They learn to develop habits of the mind – thinking critically and creatively – in order to be prepared to shape a future with meaning. Ideal class sizes mean students benefit not only from a great deal of personal attention, but also from a feeling of being closely connected to the school, to one another, and to the faculty. In this supportive, yet challenging environment, students are exposed to a broad range of subjects that allow them to explore their interests, develop new interests, and experience both personal and intellectual growth. See the Upper School Curriculum Guide and Viewbook for more information.

The weekly meetings of the Upper School Advisory Program allow students to develop connections with faculty members in small, intimate groups. In faculty-moderated sessions, students explore topics that include organization, study skills, coping with peer pressure, and ethical decision-making.


Brentwood encourages active participation in extracurricular activities in order to engage students in the life of the school and enable students to discover and purse their passions. It is a goal to provide students with as many areas as possible in which to develop their talents and to experience success. Opportunities abound for participation in art, athletics, debate, drama, dance, concert band, beginning instrumental music, orchestra, rhythm section workshop, chorus, student government, and service learning.


The arts programs at Brentwood foster a supportive atmosphere that promotes questioning, individuality, and diversity. The UpperSchool arts at Brentwood offer instruction in visual arts, dance, music, and theater. Working in observational, abstract, and/or inventive ways, students learn to manipulate ideas, techniques, and materials through a thoughtful, evolving application of the elements and principles of art and design as they work toward creative goals.


A tradition of wide and enthusiastic participation in physical education and athletics has developed alongside athletic success. Brentwood fields highly competitive teams and prizes character, sportsmanship, and teamwork. There are 37 Upper School teams representing 25 sports. Each year Brentwood teams attain league and sectional championships as well as playoff berths. The program is designed to engender an understanding of commitment, sportsmanship, hard work, and responsibility.



The Belldegrun Center for Innovative Leadership prepares community members to engage with real world challenges and explore solutions within and beyond the classroom. Work with BCIL impacts the entire Brentwood School community, cultivating innovative problem solvers, courageous risk takers, effective managers, adept communicators, and inspired community builders. Through their involvement in BCIL, students and faculty seek answers in creative, collaborative ways and discover that their work can have an impact. In the Upper School there are also 12 BCIL designated courses focused on service, social justice, multiculturalism, science, and entrepreneurship in addition to 19 students who participate in independent studies through the BCIL Scholars program and Applied Science Practicum.



Brentwood’s service learning program ensures the development of social awareness and inspires students to be lifelong learners with a self-motivated sense of responsibility to the local, national, and global communities. The school is a caring and conscientious neighbor, as well as a financial asset to both the local and broader Los Angeles communities.


Our unique partnership with the West Los Angeles VA provides robust Veteran-centric resources funded by Brentwood School. This 30+ year relationship offers services in physical recreation, health and wellness, education, as well as a range of special programs and events, all on facilities built and maintained by Brentwood School.



Brentwood believes in partnering with parents in the education of their child and encourages and welcomes parents to actively participate in the life of the school. The students benefit from sharing their school world with their parents; the school benefits from parents who contribute their talents, interests, and energy to support and enrich the school’s programs; and the parents benefit from experiencing first-hand the environment in which their children are educated.

Parents are strongly encouraged to participate in the Parents Association and Eagles organizations and to attend parent education events including guest lectures and coffees with the Upper SchoolDirector and members of the Upper School Leadership Team.


One of the hallmarks of the Brentwood Upper School is a passionate, vibrant, and student-centered faculty and staff who are committed to the following:

A culture of collegiality, professionalism, and interdisciplinary collaborationA commitment to equity, inclusion, and cross-cultural competencyRigorous college preparatory academic program and rich extracurricular offerings that foster both critical and creative thinkingStudents who are happy, self-confident, well-rounded, and caringHigh quality educational and athletic facilities on a magnificent campusCore values that emphasize character, personal responsibility, and service to the greater communityA balance of hard work and fun, and of high expectations and nurturing, with a strong focus on the quality of student lifeAn enviable stature and high demand for admissions in the universe of greater Los Angeles independent schoolsThe integration of the three excellences: Academic Excellence, Emotional Intelligence, and Character Development



The Upper School Director is responsible for all aspects of the program and personnel in the Upper School. The Upper School Leadership Team is comprised of the Director, Assistant Director of the Upper School, Director of Equity and Inclusion, Dean of Students, Director of Service Learning, Director of Student Life, Director of College Counseling, Director of Counseling, Athletic Director, and Upper School Learning Specialist Chair.



The Upper School Director, in partnership with the Upper School Assistant Director, leads a robust division that has constructed its programs and operations with careful attention to Brentwood’s mission and values. The next Director of the Upper School will accomplish the following:


Provide leadership through the hiring and retention of excellent and diverse faculty and staff, attending to the curriculum, and ensuring the Upper School’s overall vitalityLead and work collaboratively with the Upper School Leadership TeamWork with the faculty and administration to sustain systems and structures that support and increase the effectiveness of the school’s curriculum and programsFoster transparency and trust through open communication, clear expectations and full engagement-working closely with the Upper School administration, faculty, staff, parents, and studentsCreate a culture in which critical feedback is seen and experienced as a catalyst for professional and personal growthUse institutional data and relevant research to inform decisions and track progress towards a more equitable experience for all constituents, especially members of underrepresented groupsEngage fully in the daily life of the schoolProvide educational leadership and serve as a skilled spokesperson for the school’s vibrant, educational programWork closely with the Head of School and members of the Brentwood Leadership Team to foster the strength of the entire school



Brentwood School is interested in candidates who can support, articulate, and promote a mission-driven, in inclusive and equitable student-centered model of education. Along with excellent organizational and leadership skills, ideal candidates will have backgrounds that demonstrate most, if not all, of the following:


A warm, approachable presence on campus that invites and respects the views of others yet is decisive when needed Visible and accessible on campus, knowing and enjoying the faculty, staff, parents, and especially the students of the schoolEngage actively with students, faculty, staff, and families in the daily life of the school, preserving and promoting the warmth and closeness that defines the Upper School’s cultureThe ability to motivate, inspire, and support faculty and staffKnowledge and understanding of developmentally appropriate curriculum and instructional practiceA deep understanding and appreciation for diversity and a demonstrated commitment to equity and inclusionStrong familiarity with significant educational, DEI, and technology trends in independent schoolsEffective communication with faculty members, students, and parents, in a clear concise, and timely manner, keeping these groups appropriately informed of potential issues and or needsAbility to synthesize and articulate the school’s educational vision and to inspire and motive others towards further strengthening the Upper SchoolCollaborative approach to leadership and the ability to grow others professionallyA lifelong learner who uses the latest research to complement their own experiencesTeaching and administrative experience at Upper School levelsA minimum of 3 years as a school administratorAn advanced degree is preferred



The favored candidate is an energetic, confident, collaborative, culturally competent person of keen intellect and integrity who will enjoy developing and guiding the Upper School community. The frequency with which parents and teachers are on campus working together requires a leader who is the soul of discretion. The Upper School will be best served by a leader who is self-aware; has an approachable style; a sense of humor; demonstrates flexibility and resilience; and who has a true love and appreciation for educating children.



Candidates should submit the following materials:


A cover letter explaining their interests and qualifications for becoming the next Director of the Upper SchoolA current resumeThe names, e-mail addresses, and telephone numbers of three references, including a current supervisor


Please send all information and address all inquiries to:


Amelia Hollis


Assistant to the Head of School

100 South Barrington Place

Los Angeles, CA 90049



Brentwood School is an Equal Opportunity Employer dedicated to promoting diversity in the workplace and to seeking a diverse and broad spectrum of qualified candidates. Brentwood School does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, gender or gender identity, age, or sexual orientation.