Chadwick School

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Chadwick School
Chadwick School Logo.jpg
26800 South Academy Drive
Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA 90274
United States
Coordinates 33°46′36″N 118°21′40″W / 33.77667°N 118.36111°W / 33.77667; -118.36111Coordinates: 33°46′36″N 118°21′40″W / 33.77667°N 118.36111°W / 33.77667; -118.36111
Type Independent
Established 1935
Faculty 106[1]
Grades K-12

830[1] (2013-2014

  • Village School(K-6): 320
  • Middle School(7-8): 150
  • Upper School(9-12): 360
Campus Suburban
Campus size 45 acres (18 ha)
Color(s) Navy blue and white
Athletics 24 CIF Varsity teams
Athletics conference CIF Southern Section Prep League
Mascot Pacific bottlenose dolphin
Endowment $20,706,482.00

Chadwick School is a nonsectarian independent K-12 day school located on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in Los Angeles County, California, United States.[2][3][4] Specifically it is located at the top of the neighborhood referred to as Academy Hill, which is bounded by a canyon, a precipice, Crenshaw Boulevard, and Palos Verdes Drive North.


The school was founded in 1935[5] by Margaret Lee Chadwick and Commander Joseph Chadwick in San Pedro, California.[6] In 1938 the school moved to Palos Verdes, California.[5] In the beginning Chadwick was an open air day and boarding school for 75 students.

Chadwick's 380 seat main theater

After the retirement of the Chadwick family in 1963, the school created a board of trustees[5] and in 1968 discontinued its boarding program. In 1972, Chadwick joined the Cum Laude Society.[5] Up until the 1980s the school owned all of the hill leading up to it which was sold off to establish the school's endowment. Since then the school has opened more buildings, a gymnasium, and a performing arts center.[7] It is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.[8] The movie adaptation of the book Mommie Dearest was filmed at Chadwick in 1981.[9]

Student and faculty profile[edit]

Chadwick is divided into three schools: the Village School (K-grade 6), the Middle School (grades 7-8), and the Upper School (grades 9-12). 63 percent of the faculty members held advanced degrees in the 2014-2015 school year.[10]

Chadwick International[edit]

Chadwick International's four-story atrium

On January 13, 2010, the school announced that it would be administrating and integrating a sister school in South Korea. Chadwick was the third school chosen to administrate the new school after a deal with Vancouver International Primary and Secondary School fell through. Prior to that, the International School Service had submitted plans to run the school but withdrew them.[11] Later in the process the school's opening was delayed by Chadwick administrators when they failed to submit paperwork on time.[12]

The school is located in the Songdo International City, a city renowned for its efforts to 'go green'[13] and is administratively a near replica of Chadwick School in Palos Verdes.[14] Headmaster Ted Hill has stated that the sister school will remain in contact with the originating school through the use of Telepresence equipment supplied by Cisco.[15]

The school opened on September 6, 2010, and completed its first year in June 2011. As of the 2013-14 school year, Chadwick International enrolled 780 students in grades pre-K through 10. Eleventh grade was added in September 2014, and the school graduated its first class in 2015-16. There are now frequent exchanges and visits between the two Chadwick campuses.[16][17]

Study abroad[edit]

In addition to sending students to Chadwick International, Chadwick frequently exchanges students with other schools that participate in the Round Square program. Chadwick students also travel to other schools through additional programs such as ones through the Community Service program.

Sperm whale skull fossil[edit]

On February 5, 2014, a fossil of a sperm whale skull embedded in a boulder of Middle Miocene Era Altamira Shale located on the grounds of Chadwick School was removed to be studied at the LA County Natural History Museum.[18][19] An expert from the museum believed that the skull might be of a previously unknown species.[20][21] This event was widely covered by Los Angeles area news outlets.[22][23][24][25]

Extracurricular activities[edit]


Commander field in preparation for a game

Chadwick's main rivals are Polytechnic School in Pasadena, California[26] and Flintridge Preparatory School in La Cañada, California.[27]

Chadwick participates in 23 Varsity CIF sports. They include boys' football, tennis, volleyball, waterpolo, basketball, soccer, baseball, golf, and girls' tennis, volleyball, waterpolo, equestrian, basketball, soccer, golf, lacrosse, softball and cheerleading. They also include coed cross country, swimming, and track and field.

In 2007 Chadwick reevaluated its image and decided that yellow was not an appropriate school color. It also realized that its athletics logo featured a non-native dolphin. After these realizations the school designed a new blue, grey, and white logo featuring a native and more aggressive looking dolphin.

School newspaper[edit]

The school newspaper, The Mainsheet, is published in print and online.[28] Online publication was restarted at the beginning of March 2012.[29][30]

Intracurricular activities[edit]


In 2006 members of the high school community started Wicked Wobotics, team 2150, a FIRST robotics team.[31] The team won the Judges' choice award at the 2008 FIRST Robotics competition in Las Vegas, Nevada and was ranked sixth after the qualifying rounds.[32] The FRC team was discontinued in 2010.[33] The remaining team focused on the simpler and less expensive VEX Robotics Competition.

In 2011 the school added an optional robotics class to its science curriculum and moved into a larger room previously occupied by the maintenance department.

In 2014 the team had 30 members, and had to move to a much larger classroom.

In 2015 the team had 12 students.

Chadwick Robotics also collaborates with the robotics program at the Chadwick International campus in Songdo, South Korea, sharing engineering techniques and innovative strategies for each year's contest.

Notable alumni[edit]

Alumna Aida Mollenkamp demonstrates cooking techniques at the Chadwick Carnival



Alumna Christen Press plays in a Chadwick alumni soccer game


A photograph by Adams of students visiting the beach

Notable employees[edit]

In literature[edit]


Fictional Chadwick School novels[edit]

  • Mandie by Lois Gladys Leppard
  • Surviving Chadwick: A Novel by Phillip Wilhite[63]
  • THE TRUST: A Secret Society Novel by Tom Dolby[64]
  • White Lines by Jennifer Banash. Several fictional teachers in the novel share their names with Chadwick faculty. For example, the character Mr. Cass in the novel shares his last name with a Chadwick teacher.[65][66] Dr. Banash herself taught English at Chadwick.[67]


Year Film Notes
1981 Mommie Dearest Shot in main parking lot


  1. ^ a b "Chadwick At A Glance". Chadwick School. Retrieved 27 September 2013.
  2. ^ Chadwick School: Chadwick At A Glance
  3. ^ "Rolling Hills Estates city, California." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on March 28, 2010. Archived June 6, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Directions to Chadwick." Chadwick School. Retrieved on March 28, 2010.
  5. ^ a b c d Chadwick School: History of Chadwick
  6. ^ Chadwick School: About Us
  7. ^ Chadwick School
  8. ^ Chadwick School Navigator — February 2011
  9. ^ a b Mommie Dearest (1981)
  10. ^ Chadwick opens Songdo campus Archived February 1, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ Chadwick Likely to Run Songdo School
  12. ^ chadwick likely to run songdo school korea times - Google Search
  13. ^ Chadwick Likely to Run Songdo School
  14. ^ Chadwick International School
  15. ^ Chadwick School to operate new school in South Korea - The Daily Breeze
  16. ^ The City of the Future | Video - ABC News
  17. ^ "Chadwick International School: ES Schedule and Calendar". Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  18. ^ "A Whale of a Find at Chadwick". The Navigator. Chadwick School. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
  19. ^ Pappas, Stephanie (January 28, 2014). "Whale of a Tale: Rare Marine Fossil Found at School". livescience. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  20. ^ Mintz, Zoe (January 29, 2014). "Rare Whale Skull Discovered By Science Teacher, 'Remarkable' Fossil May Belong To New Species [PHOTO]". International Business Times. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  21. ^ Littlejohn, Donna. "'Priceless' fossil find on Palos Verdes Peninsula could be 12-million-year-old sperm whale". The Daily Breeze. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  22. ^ Romero, Dennis (Jan 28, 2014). "12-Million-Year-Old Whale Fossil Found at Palos Verdes School". La Weekly. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  23. ^ Irick, Whitney (Jan 29, 2014). "Science Teacher Discovers Rare Whale Fossil on School Grounds". NBC4. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  24. ^ Holguin, Robert (January 29, 2014). "RARE FOSSIL DISCOVERED AT PALOS VERDES SCHOOL". ABC7. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  25. ^ Harvey, Pat; Magers, Paul. "Fossil Of Possible Undiscovered Sperm Whale Found In Palos Verdes". CBS Los Angeles. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  26. ^ Palos Verdes Peninsula News
  27. ^ News Post
  28. ^ the Mainsheet | Chadwick School | Student driven online newspaper
  29. ^ "Student Publications". Chadwick School. Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  30. ^ "chadwick mainsheet blog". Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  31. ^ WestBots FRC 911
  32. ^ "Team 2150 - W-Squared". The Blue Alliance. Retrieved 27 August 2014.
  33. ^ W-Squared - Team 2150 - The Blue Alliance
  34. ^ Danese Cooper | LinkedIn
  35. ^ Rolling Stone | Music News, Reviews, Photos, Videos, Interviews and More
  36. ^ Mommie Dearest Movie -The 80s Rewind «
  37. ^ IMDB Hearts and Minds
  38. ^
  39. ^ Wanting More
  40. ^ Lee, Brandon - The Free Information Society
  41. ^ Mike Lookinland - Biography
  42. ^ The Milk of Almonds: Italian ... - Google Books
  43. ^ Palos Verdes Peninsula News
  44. ^ Chadwick School: Boys Cross Country Team Award Winners
  45. ^ Nemy, Enid (2001-08-09). "Maureen Reagan, 60, Activist and President's Daughter". The New York Times.
  46. ^ "Pippa Scott Was Sure To Become Actress". Lewiston Evening Journal. Oct 6, 1962. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  47. ^ Olivia Vordenberg 2011 NH POL Champion. "Poetry Out Loud". Poetry Out Loud. Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  48. ^ "Overview for Robert Towne". Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  49. ^ Elaine Woo, "Michael Viner dies at 65; tabloid book publisher", Los Angeles Times, August 13, 2009.
  50. ^ Chadwick Alum Wins Major Journalism Award - Chadwick School
  51. ^ Price, S.L. (2006-09-16). "Standing Tall". Sports Illustrated.
  52. ^ Hays, Graham. "Press finishes career on top". Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  53. ^ Leggat, David (August 5, 2008). "Soccer: Ferns ready to show they deserve their place". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  54. ^ John Thorrington - Soccer Blog - ESPN Los Angeles
  55. ^ Chadwick School: Ansel Adams and Cedric Wright
  56. ^ Gray, Alysia (2011-01-10). "A Local School's Famous Photogs". NBC Los Angeles. Retrieved 2012-02-09.
  57. ^ "Chadwick football team crushes Saint Joseph", Palos Verdes Peninsula News, October 7, 2010.
  58. ^ Chadwick School to Open State-of-the-Art “Chadwick International School” in South Korea This Fall | EON: Enhanced Online News
  59. ^ Hedy Lamarr: The Most Beautiful Woman in Film (Screen Classics) (9780813126043): Ruth Barton: Books
  60. ^ Indigenous: growing up Californian - Google Books
  61. ^ Mommie Dearest (9780966336900): Christina Crawford: Books
  62. ^ The Milk of Almonds: Italian ... - Google Books
  63. ^ Surviving Chadwick: A Novel (9780595520947): Phillip Wilhite: Books
  64. ^ THE TRUST: A Secret Society Novel by Tom Dolby
  65. ^ Banash, Jennifer (2013). White lines. New York: Penguin Group. p. 60. ISBN 978-1-101-60788-6.
  66. ^ "Faculty and Staff Directory". Chadwick School. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
  67. ^ Arieh, Nicole (7 October 2010). "Brentwood welcomes new teachers to Middle and Upper Divisions" (PDF). The Flyer (1). Brentwood School. Retrieved 27 August 2014.