A Letter of Thanks

Appreciation & Partnership!

These are the strengths of our school. We are so proud to be a part of Westside Neighborhood School and we want to thank everyone in our community for your commitment, your strengths, your vision and your belief in this amazing school we are proud to all be a part of.

The 2019-20 brought so many challenges, opportunities, and a strength that we, together, are remarkable. From the amazing Family Fun events, to the Virtual Gala, to hearing from Attorney Ben Crump, to marching on street corners together with parents, students, teachers, and Head of School, and to finally celebrating the unwavering achievements of the Class of 2020. Thank you all for the incredible financial support we received from our faculty and staff, our parents, our grandparents, our alumni, and the foundations who support all that we are doing. We raised more dollars for the WNS Annual Fund than in previous years and supported the ever-important Financial Assistance Emergency Fund!

We triumphed together and we held each other up and found a path of strength, love, and a road we are proud to be on together.

Veni, vedi, vici! We came, we saw, we conquered!

With gratitude for everyone who is a part of our WNS Community,

Photo: Our beloved Virtual Gala began with this great moment.

Highlights of Our Year

Academic Excellence


WNS second graders use the annual Changemaker Showcase to highlight important work of past and current social activists. Every year our students choose, study, and write about these historic changemakers. Then, they present their projects in character for fellow students, teachers, and parents. We love learning about important figures in history from our WNS students!

Choral Music

Congratulations to the twelve eighth graders who represented WNS at the CAIS Honors Music Festival in February! These WNS students represented our school well – showing focus, enthusiasm, and bravery. They tried new things, stretched themselves, and many of them chose to sit in the front row and/or sang solos!

Mock Trial

The WNS Middle School Mock Trial Defense Team pulled off a big win as the defendants and returned a not guilty verdict! One student was awarded MVP by the opposing team for his role as a witness, and the judge went out of her way to applaud another for his performance as the defendant. What an awesome accomplishment for these students and our school!

Maker Faire

WNS hosted the second annual Mini Maker Faire last fall, tapping into the imagination of third, fourth, and fifth grade students from all over LA. Attendees chose from a variety of interactive stations that included exploring a far off land through virtual reality, coding a robot to move and light up, laser cutting a personalized logo, building with cardboard, woodworking, and much more!



The WNS athletic program philosophy is to promote teamwork and cooperation, learn to balance schoolwork with athletics and become more resilient individuals by being a member of a sports team. At WNS, athletics builds character, whether it’s learning to lose with pride, win with grace, or simply being a team player. Congratulations to our Varsity Boys basketball team for winning the Pacific Basin League title last year. This is our first varsity basketball title in school history! Our JV Girls basketball team also won a title!

WE Program

Each year, the WNS Service Elective works with the WE program to raise money for global initiatives around the world. The students who join the elective get to choose which country and cause they want their profits to go towards. Last year, the elective sold raifikis during the WNS Book Fair. Rafikis are hand-beaded bracelets made by female artisans. We donated the proceeds from our sales to support clean water initiatives in Ethiopia.

Service Learning

As part of our 7th grade service learning, students visited A Place Called Home, an organization in South Central Los Angeles that provides a number of services to youth in the area. Leading up to their field trip, 7th grade students collected over 600 items to donate, including new (or gently used) books, comic books, and graphic novels for the organization’s annual Comic Art & Literacy Expo. Students reflected that it was rewarding to help others who didn’t have the same opportunities.

Social Emotional Learning

As a part of social-emotional learning (SEL) and art explorations, ECC students were asked to draw their bodies and paint on the emotions they feel. They said, “I’m feeling happy in my heart so I’m going to get pink.” WNS’s SEL curriculum is based on the cognitive building blocks of social thinking as seen in this ECC exercise. This curriculum centers around six essential skills – Self Regulation, Flexible Thinking, Perspective Taking, Social Communication, Problem Solving, and Thinking as Part of a Group. We believe that these skills are essential for success in school and in life outside of education.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

WNS Activism

This year our community was rocked by the horrific deaths of George Floyd, Amaud Abery, and Breonna Taylor, which sparked protests across our nation and our world. WNS Black students and parents responded to the moment by organizing two very impactful protest gatherings. The first, organized by our 2nd grade students, was held on the corner of Jefferson and Beethoven and drew over 50 classmates, teachers, friends, and the attention of hundreds of passersby. The next day our middle school students put together a powerful demonstration and memorial to George Floyd and the countless others who have died as a result of racial violence. Hundreds of WNS students, parents, faculty, and friends attended Sunday’s event in support of #BlackLivesMatter

Affinity Groups

WNS 8th grade students saw a need for more meaningful connections within the student body and helped launch middle school affinity groups. They provide a safe space for students to share experiences amongst peers with a common identity including race, gender, sexual orientation, language, nationality, physical/mental ability, socio-economic class, family structure, and religion, among others. These affinity groups inspired the development of faculty/staff affinity groups last year which has helped strengthen the bonds among the adults on campus. This year, we will introduce affinity groups to the parent/caregiver community to encourage a stronger bond, a deeper sense of community, and a source of support for our parents and caregivers.  



In May, our WNS community came together with our first-ever, Heartfelt & Hopeful Virtual Gala. We were able to celebrate the very best of WNS at this virtual event. We had DJ Rick serving up hits on the ones and twos while our 500+ guests danced the night away. There was so much joy online and we did it all for an amazing cause…supporting our community. The auction this year directly supported the Financial Assistance Emergency Fund and it was a huge success. On top of the auction, we also raised our virtual paddles to support this important fund. It was a beautiful moment seeing our community support each other in a time of need. Thank you to everyone who gave from their heart to help this special fund.

ECC Sings

Every Wednesday, every member of the ECC community is invited to gather on our West Lawn to begin the day with music and singing. We sit in a circle so that everyone’s voice is heard and sing songs both old and new. Everything from On Top of Spaghetti to Three Little Birds by Bob Marley is incorporated and requests from kids or adults are always welcome.

Party Book

In an extraordinary community like WNS, it is vital that our parent/caregiver community find ways to engage and interact socially. We enjoy our diverse community and create regular opportunities to socialize, create bonds and fundraise for WNS with our Party Books. Our Party Book catalog boasts experiences that lend interests to all facets of entertainment, hobbies, sports, and adventure. WNS Party Books offer something for everyone! We are so very grateful to our families for always tapping into the hearts and minds of what our community needs and wants combined with a genuine effort to fundraise for WNS – making Party Books what we deem as the cornerstone of our “friendraisers.”

Book Fair

Nothing gets the hallways of WNS buzzing like our annual WNS Book Fair, the first big event of the school year that our Parent Group produces. Operated by our very own WNS families, who volunteer their time to stack books, create displays, run check-out stands, and deliver special orders to teachers and classrooms. The Book Fair creates a magical time of bonding for our entire WNS community. This year, WNS was able to engage our collective love of reading with special author visits, a diverse book selection, and read-alouds to some of our youngest students. 

Graduation & Matriculation

WNS Class of 2020

Archer School, Crossroads School (4), El Segundo High School, Geffen Academy (2), Harvard-Westlake School, Hood River Valley High School, Loyola High School (3), Marlborough School, Marymount High School (8), Mira Costa High School (2), New West Charter School, Pacifica Christian High School (6), Redondo Union High School, Santa Monica High School, St. John Bosco High School, Venice High School, Vistamar School (9), Windward School (3)

WNS Class of 2016

Our traditional Alumni Assembly moved to Zoom this year!

American Musical and Dramatic Academy, Arts Educational Schools London, Boston University, Brandeis University, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Cal State Monterey Bay, Colby College, College of William & Mary, Colorado College, Denison University (2), Duke University, El Camino College (3), Elon University, Emerson College, George Washington University, Harvard University, James Cook University, Muhlenberg College, New York University, Northwestern University, Rice University, Santa Clara University, Syracuse University (2), Tulane University (2), University of Arizona, University of California, Los Angeles, University of California, San Diego, University of California, Santa Barbara, University of Denver, University of Hawaii, University of New England, University of Oregon, University of San Francisco, University of Southern California, University of Utah, University of Washington (2), Valparaiso University, Vanderbilt University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Looking Forward to 2020-21: We Believe Series

We have heard from so many of you, expressing your gratitude for all the additional effort and diligence that has gone into fortifying WNS’s academic curriculum, SEL programs, DEI leadership, as well as financial support for WNS families. In joining us to support this year’s Annual Fund, you will not only be bridging the tuition gap, but you will also be supporting those vital expenses that none of us could have ever predicted a year ago. The generosity of so many to the WNS Annual Fund ensures all students receive an excellent education. Take a look at what is inspiring our families to give! 

“Thank you for walking the talk and setting the example for independent schools all over Los Angeles. We are grateful for you.”

“It’s reassuring to see that our school is on top of every twist and turn…we really believe in WNS.”

“Thank you for your commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, social justice, and anti-racism.”

Click Here to Support the 2020-21 Annual Fund

The success of last year was made possible by the support you provided…

Click Here

…to view the 2019-20 Financials and Donor List.