Brentwood School (Los Angeles)

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Brentwood School
Brentwood School (Los Angeles) logo.svg
Head of schoolMike Riera
EnrollmentWest Campus: 300
East Campus: 695
Average class sizeK–6: 43
7–8: 104-105
9–12: 120-121
Campus27 acres (11 ha)
Color(s)Red and blue
Athletics conferenceCIF Southern Section
Gold Coast League (California)
Team nameThe Eagles
RivalCrossroads School for Arts & Sciences
NewspaperThe Flyer

Brentwood School is an independent, secular K-12 coed day school with two campuses located four blocks apart in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, United States. The school is regarded for academics, arts, and athletics.[1]


Founded in 1972, Brentwood School took over the property formerly owned by Brentwood Military Academy, which had existed at this location since 1930. The Academy, founded by Mary McDonnell in 1902, moved sites multiple times, and was always under the direction of Miss McDonnell and other family members. In spring 1972, it was announced that the military academy would not reopen in the fall, and the property was sold by John McDonnell to Terry Leavey Lemons and Walter Ziglar, who soon converted the school to non-profit status. Brentwood School opened in fall 1972 as a college preparatory day school serving Grades 6-10. The first Headmaster of Brentwood School was Richman Grant. Grade 11 was added in 1973, and the school graduated its first Senior class in June 1975. After that, the school remained Grades 7-12 until 1995 when, under the guidance of Headmaster Hunter M. Temple, Brentwood School purchased the Marymount Junior School campus and opened the Lower Division. With the opening of the Lower Division in fall 1995, the school became Grades K-6 on the West Campus and Grades 7-12 on the East Campus. In 2001 the 22 acre (89,000 m²) Brentwood School Athletics Complex opened on the East Campus. On December 2, 2011, four new modular classrooms were installed by Gen7 at Brentwood School's East Campus. The classrooms, LEED Gold certified, will provide 100% of their own energy, making them the first zero net energy classrooms in Los Angeles County.[2][3]

Walter Ziglar and Terry Leavey Lemons are credited as founders of the school. For the first 5 years, Mr. Ziglar served as the President. He was also the Chair of the first Board of Executive Directors, which included Bill Badham of Curtis School and Vern Simpson of Montclair Prep.

Each year, the Terry Leavey Lemons award is given “to the senior who has enriched the Brentwood School community through his/her qualities of friendship, sincerity, courtesy, and understanding.”


The Brentwood School East Campus Tower.

Combined enrollment on both campuses is 995 students – 695 on the East Campus and 300 on the West Campus. For the 2017-2018 school year, tuition in the Lower School was listed a $34,460 per year, while tuition in the Middle and Upper Schools were listed at $40,760 per year.[4] The school awards approximately $3,500,000 in need-based financial aid each year. Brentwood is a highly selective school, with major admissions entry points in kindergarten, 7th, and 9th grades, and only limited openings at other grade levels. Admissions decisions are made by a committee composed of faculty and administrators. Brentwood offers a liberal arts curriculum, including over 100 courses each year, including advanced placement courses in 17 subject areas. The School year runs from August 29 to June 9.


During any given school year, Brentwood School fields 67 different athletic teams in grades 7-12. Brentwood School Upper Division fields 36 teams in 23 different sports. Students fill about 500 roster spots and work with more than 80 coaches. Approximately 80% of Brentwood’s students will participate in at least one interscholastic sport. The school primarily employs its own teachers as coaches, and requires that students maintain a certain degree of academic standing in order to participate in sports. Brentwood School has a history of hosting the annual Special Olympics Games put on in conjunction with the Special Olympics Southern California Westside Chapter. In 2003, Brentwood-area resident (and former Governor of California) Arnold Schwarzenegger was the Guest of Honor and presided over the Special Olympics Games' Opening Ceremony. Since 1992, the School has also provided venue for the Peter Vidmar Men's Gymnastic's Invitational, hosted by former U.S Gold-Medal winning Olympian and Brentwood School alumnus, Peter Vidmar.

Relation to Olympics[edit]

Brentwood School track and cross-country coaches Joanna Hayes and Malachi Davis participated in 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. Joanna Hayes was a Gold-Medalist in the Women's 100 metres hurdles competition for the United States. Davis was a participant in the Men's 4x400 metres relay for Great Britain. Jason Rogers, a Brentwood School alumnus as well as an Ohio State graduate, was a participant in the 2004 Olympic Games, as a Sabre Fencer for the United States National team. He was part of the 2008 team in the Beijing Olympics and won a Silver Medal in the Team tournament for Sabre. Peter Vidmar, who led the United States to a Gold-medal in Men's Gymnastics at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California, is also a Brentwood School alumnus, and was a member of the Board of Trustees for several years.

Casey Wasserman who attended Brentwood School led Los Angeles' successful bid for the 2028 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games and is serving as the head of the organizing committee for the event.

Notable alumni[edit]


Brentwood School is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, and is a member of the following organizations:

Brentwood Lower Division Honors[edit]

  • 2012 National School of Character Award
  • 2011 California State School of Character Award
  • 2010 California State School of Character Award


  • August 29, 2013 – U.S. District Judge S. James Otero responding to a lawsuit by the ACLU, ruled that the West Los Angeles Veterans' Administration Enhanced Sharing Agreements that allowed VA land to be leased to Brentwood School, UCLA, and other businesses were not valid[7] As of the start of the 2014-2015 school year, the ruling that the VA must terminate those leases is under appeal to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • May 18, 2016 - Former Major League Baseball player Barry Bonds, whose daughter attends the school, expressed racism outrage over white students using the "n-word" while rapping to a popular ASAP Ferg song.[8] The incident spurred a petition calling for action.[9]


  1. ^ Sondheimer, Eric (3 November 2008). "Brentwood has brains and brawn". Los Angeles Times.
  2. ^[permanent dead link]
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Affording BWS". Retrieved 5 February 2014.
  5. ^ "It's Academic for Forst Until June Graduation". latimes. Retrieved September 16, 2015.
  6. ^ "Alumni- Jon Landau '78, producer of Avatar and Titanic". Archived from the original on 2011-07-08.l
  7. ^ Judge says LA land meant for veteran use Archived 2013-08-30 at, The Modesto Bee, August 29, 2013
  8. ^ "Barry Bonds -- Calls Racism On Daughter's Private School ... White Kids Rapping N-Word". Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  9. ^ "Petition Calls on School to Investigate Racially Charged Video". NBC Southern California. Retrieved 2016-05-18.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°03′40″N 118°28′32″W / 34.061157°N 118.475597°W / 34.061157; -118.475597