The Archer School for Girls

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The Archer School for Girls
The Archer School for Girls logo.png
11725 Sunset Boulevard
Brentwood, Los Angeles, CA 90049
United States
Type Independent
Motto "Ambitious, Joyful Learning"
Established 1995; 23 years ago (1995)
Founders Megan Callaway
Victoria Shorr
Diana Meehan
Head of school Elizabeth English
Faculty 67
Grades 6–12[2]
Gender Girls only[2]
Enrollment 495[2]
Classes 155[2]
Average class size 16
Student to teacher ratio 8:1
Campus 7 acres[1]

Fall: Volleyball, Tennis, Cross Country, Swimming, Equestrian
Winter: Soccer, Basketball, Equestrian

Spring: Equestrian, Softball, Swimming, Track and Field, Tennis
Mascot The Panther
Publication Artemis (School Magazine)
Newspaper The Oracle
Tuition $39,075[2]

The Archer School for Girls is an independent, college preparatory girls' school, grades 6–12, located in West Los Angeles, California, United States. Archer currently enrolls 495 students from 81 different zip codes and 155 feeder schools. Tuition fees were $39,075 a year as of 2017.[3]


The school derives its name from the Greek goddess Artemis, called Diana in later Roman myth, classically depicted taking aim with her bow and arrow, guided by the moon. In addition to being a skilled hunter, Artemis was also traditionally a protectress of girls and women, teaching girls in her protection to be self-sufficient and strong before rejoining society.[4]


Archer was founded in 1995 by Megan Callaway, Victoria Shorr, and Diana Meehan, all graduates of girls' schools and all parents of daughters who were about to enter middle school. The school started in a converted Pacific Palisades dance studio with just over 30 sixth and seventh grade students. In 1999 the school purchased the Eastern Star Home for Women in Brentwood Village and relocated to the site.[4]

Building and location[edit]

Built in 1931, as the Eastern Star Home for Women, the building was designed by California architect William Mooser,[5] famous for his work in the Spanish Colonial Revival style. The building has been designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument[6] and is listed in the California Register of Historic Places.

The site was used as a location for the 1974 film Chinatown. For the movie, the home was called the Mar Vista Rest Home.


Thirty-nine percent of Archer girls identify themselves as students of color.[2] Students come from 155 different elementary and secondary schools that live in 81 different zip codes across Greater Los Angeles. Nearly one-quarter of students participate in the Flexible Tuition program which awarded $3.8 million in financial aid for the 2017-18 school year.


Middle School subjects include English, history, mathematics, science, modern world languages, fitness and wellness, arts, co-curriculars, and community service. Upper School students may also study visual and media arts, human development, and take independent study, honors, and AP courses.[7] Archer partners with The Online School for Girls to offer additional STEM, and language courses to students.[7][8] In 2017, the School offered 155 classes.[9]

Archer puts on an annual STEM symposium as part of an initiative to increase female participation in these fields.[10] The School also has an extensive film program including an annual film festival.[1]

Archer offers an experiential learning curriculum. The goals of the program are to provide opportunities for students to embrace possibility, seek challenges, and take risks outside of the traditional classroom. The essential components of the School’s outdoor education program are Fall Outing and Arrow Week. Through participation in outdoor education trips, students learn how to lead effectively in cooperative group settings and take risks in order to discover personal strengths and challenges.

In 2016, Archer introduced the Interdisciplinary Studies Program (ISP). ISP offers students the ability to grapple with complex issues and ideas that span multiple disciplines. Courses emphasize cognitive skills while students develop connections in meaningful contexts. Interdisciplinary learning deepens understanding, improves retention, and enhances critical thinking and problem-solving abilities while developing students’ capacity to develop multiple perspectives. Skills and knowledge are assessed through complex tasks and project-based assessments that will require the synthesis of multiple domains of learning.

Traditions and extracurriculars[edit]

One of Archer's long standing traditions is the raising of a maypole each year in spring. The tradition began in 1981 when an anonymous donor arranged to have the maypole erected for the residents of the Eastern Star Home for Women then located at the site. Archer has continued this tradition, with sixth graders performing a maypole dance on the last day of school.[11]

Awards and recognition[edit]

The school newspaper, The Oracle, was awarded The Columbia Scholastic Press Association's Gold Medal — its highest honor — in its 2016 Medalist Critique. The publication was also named one of 38 finalists for the National Scholastic Press Association's Online Pacemaker competition in 2016.

During spring 2017 Archer’s a cappella team, The Unaccompanied Minors, was invited to perform at New York’s prestigious Carnegie Hall for Total Vocal 2017, a celebration of contemporary a cappella music featuring guest artists from Pitch Perfect and The Sing-Off.

In 2016, a total of 119 national-level medals were awarded to students in the Upper School World Languages department for excellence in French, Spanish, Chinese, and Latin.

During the 2016-17 school year, Archer received 20 Arts Awards from National Youth Arts and another 32 nominations.

A total of 52 Archer students were awarded 82 distinctions, including 13 Gold Keys, at the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Students earned awards in Design, Digital Art, Drawing, Film, Mixed Media, Photography, Portfolio, and Sculpture.

Archer students received a Lemelson-MIT program grant for proposing a compact, faucet-mounted water meter to encourage awareness surrounding water consumption as part of the program’s 2015-16 InvenTeam initiative. Archer was one of 14 schools selected to receive a grant.[12] In spring 2016, Archer ran a design challenge for 6th-8th graders sponsored by XPRIZE on the topic of food sustainability.[13]

In 2003 Archer received the LA Conservancy Preservation Award for Adaptive Reuse[14] and in 2007 received an award from the Brentwood Historical Society for Outstanding Repurposing of an Historic Landmark.[citation needed]

Notable alumnae[edit]


  1. ^ a b Capuano, Erin P. (19 February 2015). "Review: Archer School for Girls". Digital Journal. Los Angeles. Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "The Most Coveted Private Schools in Los Angeles". ParentPick. Retrieved 6 January 2016. 
  3. ^ Ethics guru, exclusive private school spar over discipline of daughter LA Times, Harriet Ryan, July 1, 2014
  4. ^ a b Meehan, Diana (2007). Learning like a girl : educating our daughters in schools of their own (1st ed.). New York: PublicAffairs. ISBN 978-1-58648-410-1. 
  5. ^ "Eastern Star Home, 11725 Sunset, Brentwood, Los Angeles. March 30, 1932". Huntington Digital Library. Retrieved 6 January 2016. 
  6. ^ "(#440)" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  7. ^ a b "Archer Course Catalog". issuu. Archer School for Girls. 5 March 2015. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 
  8. ^ "Online School for Girls puts focus on connection, collaboration". LA Times. 2014-07-19. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  9. ^ JB (2015-10-21). "The Most Coveted Private Schools in Los Angeles | ParentPick Blog". Archived from the original on 20 September 2015. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  10. ^ Esons, Dave. "THE ARCHER SCHOOL FOR GIRLS 2nd Annual S.T.E.M. Symposium Sets New Standard for Girls, Math and Science". Patch. Brentwood, CA. Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  11. ^ "A magical mystery maypole rises in Brentwood - latimes". 2004-05-02. Retrieved 2016-04-13. 
  12. ^ "Archer School for Girls Awarded Lemelson-MIT InvenTeam Grant". L.A. Parent. Epstein Custom Media, Inc. 10 November 2015. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 
  13. ^ Elston, Christina (7 February 2016). "Archer Students Accept XPRIZE Challenge". L.A. Parent. Epstein Custom Media, Inc. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 
  14. ^ Reynolds, Christopher (March 30, 2003). "Preservation projects praised - latimes". Retrieved 2016-04-13. 

Further reading[edit]

  • "Global Nomads Group Relies on Videoconferencing to Connect Students Worldwide", Annamaria DiGiorgio. T.H.E. Journal. Tustin: Feb 2004.Vol.31, Iss. 7; pg. 8. PMID (ProQuest Media Identifier): 19693. (videoconferencing between Archer School, a school in New York, and a school in Israel during Global Perspectives: One World, Many Celebrations)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°03′54″N 118°28′16″W / 34.064933°N 118.471167°W / 34.064933; -118.471167