Harvard west Lake School

Harvard west Lake School

Harvard-Westlake School is an independent, co-educational university preparatory day school consisting of two campuses located in Los Angeles, California, with approximately 1,600 students enrolled in grades seven through 12. Its two predecessor organizations began as for-profit schools before turning non-profit and eventually merging. It is not affiliated with Harvard University despite being named after it.

Harvard west Lake School History

The Harvard School for Boys was established in 1900 by Grenville C. Emery as a military academy, on the site of a barley field located at the corner of Western Avenue and Sixteenth Street (now Venice Boulevard) in Los Angeles, California. Emery was originally from Boston, and around 1900 he wrote to Harvard University to ask permission to use the Harvard name for his new secondary school and received permission from the university’s then-President, Charles W. Eliot.

In 1911, it secured an endorsement from the Episcopal Church, becoming a non-profit organization. In 1937, the school moved to its present-day campus at the former Hollywood Country Club on Coldwater Canyon in Studio City after receiving a $25,000 ($436,000 in current dollar terms) loan from aviation pioneer Donald Douglas.

The Westlake School for Girls was established in 1904 by Jessica Smith Vance and Frederica de Laguna in what is now downtown Los Angeles, California, as an exclusively female institution offering both elementary and secondary education. It was so-named because it was near Westlake Park, now known as MacArthur Park. At the time, the school was a for-profit alternative to the already-established Marlborough School, which had been established as a non-profit before the turn of the century.

As both schools continued to grow in size towards the late 1980s, and as gender exclusivity became less of a factor both in the schools’ reputations and desirability, the trustees of both Harvard and Westlake effectuated a merger in 1989. The two institutions had long been de facto sister schools and interacted socially. Complete integration and coeducation began in 1991.

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Harvard west Lake
Harvard west Lake

Harvard west Lake School Tuition

Tuition and Fees for 2019-2020

Tuition $39,700
New Student Fee $2,000
Bus Service (optional) $2,550-2,750*
Other Estimated Costs $2,500-$3,500**

*Middle School and Upper School service. Upper School receives a 50% fee credit subsidy.
**Books, meals, activities, etc.  Typical, but subject to variation.

Harvard-Westlake offers the following payment plans for families.

  • Annual: pay in one installment, due on July 1, 2019.
  • Semiannual: pay in two installments, due on July 1, 2019, and January 1, 2020.
  • Quarterly: pay in four installments, due on July 1, 2019; October 1, 2019; January 1, 2020; and April 1, 2020.
  • Monthly: pay in 10 monthly installments, commencing July 1, 2019, and concluding April 1, 2020.

Harvard west Lake School Baseball

23 – 5 – 1
14 – 3 – 1
  • Jared Halpert
    Baseball Program Head

Harvard west Lake School Basketball

21 – 9
6 – 2

  • David Rebibo
    Boys Basketball Program Head


Harvard west Lake School Ranking

  • In 2002, Worth magazine ranked Harvard-Westlake number 34 out of thousands of secondary institutions across the country in sending children to top colleges and universities.
  • In 2008, Harvard-Westlake was ranked one of America’s 25 best independent schools according to www.prepreview.com, an education ranking aggregator.
  • In 2008, Los Angeles magazine named Harvard-Westlake as one of the most elite prep schools in the Greater Los Angeles area
  • In 2010, Forbes magazine ranked Harvard-Westlake 12th among the country’s top prep schools.
  • In 2018, Niche ranked Harvard-Westlake 2nd nationally among private schools.

Harvard west Lake School Alumni

  • Jonathan Ahdout, actor
  • Elisa Albert, author
  • Dorothy Arzner, film director
  • Jillian Banks, musician
  • Candice Bergen, actress
  • Peter Bergman, actor
  • Steve Bing, film producer, philanthropist
  • Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis, London
  • Brennan Boesch, MLB player 
  • Autumn Burke, California State Assemblymember
  • Jessica Capshaw, actress
  • Mindy Cohn, actress
  • Jarron Collins, NBA player
  • Jason Collins, NBA player
  • Lily Collins, actress, model, host
  • Jamie Lee Curtis, actress
  • Gray Davis, Governor of California
  • Emily Deschanel, actress and model
  • Dominique Dunne, actress
  • Breck Eisner, tv and film director
  • Douglas Fairbanks Jr., actor
  • Beanie Feldstein, actress
  • Ayda Field, actress
  • Jack Flaherty, MLB player for the St. Louis Cardinals
  • Bridget Fonda, actress
  • Max Fried, MLB baseball player for the Atlanta Braves
  • Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles Mayor
  • Scott Garson, basketball coach, College of Idaho
  • Jean Paul Getty, Businessman
  • Lucas Giolito, MLB player for the Chicago White Sox
  • Russell Goldsmith, attorney, Chairman and CEO of the City National Bank
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, actor
  • Maggie Gyllenhaal, actress
  • Julia Hahn, Breitbart News reporter, special assistant to President Trump
  • H. R. Haldeman, White House Chief of Staff (1969-73)
  • Mark Harmon, actor, NCIS
  • Evan Harris, British Member of Parliament
  • Alex Israel, multimedia artist, writer, and eyewear designer
  • Jon Jaques, professional basketball player, assistant basketball coach (Cornell University)

Harvard-Westlake School Reviews

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I think that Harvard-Westlake was a very interesting way to spend my middle and high school years. It was very rigorous but I feel that it prepared me for college better than anyone I know, and I believe I learned a lot of skills that will help me for the rest of my life. It was difficult at the time, but I cannot imagine my life any other way.
It’s been a year since my daughter transferred into HW upper school from a different school. It was a difficult decision for her to leave the comfort of her friends to enter a more rigorous school. But she is a competitor and HW provides the tools to take scholars with similar drive to a higher level of learning. The faculty is superb. Her teachers constantly engage her and her dean is always there to make sure she is happy while helping her to reach her educational goals. She has joined some great clubs and met some outstanding friends. I’m sure this school may not be right for everyone. From my perspective, if your child wants to challenge himself or herself educationally, this is an excellent school.

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