The Northwest School Viewbook 2020-21

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Welcome to our House.

One of the great benefits of being a small and personal school is that we can flex and bend as a community, responding to the individual needs of our students and also to the forces of our times. This has never been more important to our educational mission or to the students and families we serve than it is today. In the context of the current pandemic, we are deeply committed to nurturing our community, providing continuity, and cultivating connections between our students, faculty, and families. Whether we are fully online, fully in person, or a hybrid of both, we offer our students a compelling learning experience that is robust, challenging, and most importantly, animated with joy. Our community represents a great diversity of backgrounds and experiences, making our engagement with one another—our work and play together—evocative and illuminating. We are guided by four principles, with student experience and outcomes at the center: Agile Mindset, Teaching Excellence, Small is Beautiful, and Social Justice. Each of these essential facets of our school contributes to a school culture and climate that is inviting, engaging, and inclusive. Northwest students are enthusiastic about learning in our vibrant urban setting. They’re intellectually curious and eager to engage in our interdisciplinary, liberal-arts-and-sciences curriculum, informed by the critical intersection of environmental sustainability, social justice, and global perspective. Our signature Humanities program is a rich, seven-year interdisciplinary mix of history and literature, that weaves in the study of philosophy, religion, politics, economics, art, and culture while developing strong skills in writing and spoken expression, critical thinking, and research. The arts are fundamental to our educational experience—every student taking two arts classes at all times—giving students opportunities to express themselves, stretch outside their comfort zones, and envision new pathways to problem-solve.

Contents Long Live Real Learning


The Power of Creativity


Global Learning in Action


Preparing Body & Soul


A Culture of We


Facts & Figures


Our science and math courses are designed to provide students with a strong foundation in the fundamentals of the living world and to give them the tools to think critically, creatively, and inquisitively about forces in our universe. We believe students learn best when their lessons engage them in problem solving with real-time data, handson labs, and multiple technologies. We want our students to feel empowered to grapple with present day issues and inspired to go out and affect change. Please come visit us, either virtually or in person, to see what life in the House might be like for you. We believe it’s transformational.

Meg Goldner Rabinowitz • Acting Head of School

Long Live Real Learning Real life is layered and complex. There are intersections of experiences every day. At The Northwest School, we believe learning should be that way, too. Integrated, multi-dimensional, and sometimes a little messy, in a good way. That’s the idea. It’s real learning. At The Northwest School students experience the exhilarating chemistry between academics and arts, between Humanities and science, between politics and culture. They study with students from up to 15 different countries and immerse in cultures around the globe. They learn to see the interdependence of all aspects of life in the real world. The big picture comes into focus.


Strategic Framework A Framework Built for Engagement & Evolution Our Strategic Framework is not just a plan with specific goals. Adopted by the Board of Trustees in 2018, the Framework will guide Northwest’s decision-making about all aspects of the school—our program, the student experience, campus expansion, faculty growth and professional development, enrollment, and much more—over the next several years. We believe it captures both the essence of the school now and the directions we hope to travel together, enabling us to better achieve our vision, support our mission, and leverage our many strengths. Ultimately, our aim is straightforward and unwavering: to cultivate in young people a sense of wonder, purpose, and agency in order that they might leave the House able “to think and act with integrity, believing they have a positive impact on the world.” This Framework reinforces our commitment to that ambitious goal.

The Graphic We chose as the Framework’s visual expression the camera lens, a powerful metaphor that implies a capacity for focusing broadly, at a distance, and close-up, and that symbolizes the complementary disciplines of art, science, and technology. Unlike more traditional strategic plans, our Framework is not simply a to-do list, but a holistic way of thinking about the school’s identity, its values, and its evolution.

Ju s

Te ac h

So cia l

Student-centered learning leads to a sense of wonder, purpose, and agency.

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Exceptional faculty – Our diverse our greatest community Liberal arts and resource – works sciences animated continue to relentlessly by intellectual vitality, choose The to advance joy, and humor A vibrant Northwest equity and international School. inclusion school so that all community Education We graduate can thrive. and global as a students with network historical, scientific, commitment artistic, and global to humanity Our perspective, enabling urban them to think and act campus with integrity, believing reflects The they have a positive our ecological impact on the educational imperative world. philosophy of an urban Our - bold, environmental technology imaginative, education The integration and transformative model consistent power of the arts empowers with our all students, environmental fostering values. creativity and capacity for complex We work at the forefront of social justice, problemenvironmental stewardship, and solving. global perspective, passionately engaged at their critical intersection.

Our Mission

We remain focused on Northwest’s foundational and enduring educational purpose.


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tif ul


The unique qualities and programs that distinguish us from our peers.


This is the work we need to do to achieve our vision, support our mission, and leverage our strengths.



These guide our work, with student experience and outcomes at the center of our efforts.


Real learning is seeing the big picture.


Debating World Issues Eleventh-graders tackle some of the world’s thorniest and most controversial issues in our annual Eleventh Grade Debates. International and domestic students team up to research the pros and cons of issues such as using drones to combat terrorism, phasing out nuclear power, ending agricultural subsidies, and closing Guantanamo Prison. Leading up to the debates, teammates strategize both sides of the issue, practice arguing either side, and a few days before, they finally learn which side they’re on. On debate day, they argue in front of their peers and faculty. Students observing the debate are allowed to ask clarifying questions, provide critical analysis of the debate’s performance, and vote on the issue.

C H E M I S T RY + E N V I R O N M E N T

Analyzing Real Data Advanced Chemistry students gain a better understanding of their impact on the environment by connecting chemistry lessons to their everyday lives. In one unit, they study the physical and chemical properties of plastics and then make their own bioplastics, burying them in soil and digging them up at the end of the year to see how much they have decomposed. In another unit, students conduct carbon footprint analyses of their own homes, gathering date on transportation, electricity, and food consumption. Moreover, they investigate King County’s Strategic Climate Action Plan, research the fuels typically used by the county, and calculate the greenhouse emissions released by those fuels. Lastly, they synthesize their research to advise King County which fuels to keep using responsibly, which to eliminate, and what strategies might improve energy efficiency such as running all buses on biodiesel.


Learning Through Action Seniors have the opportunity to start their final year by jumping into a political campaign. From city council to presidential races, students select a candidate or initiative, contact local campaign headquarters, and devote 15 hours to the cause. They must interview the candidate or someone closely connected to the campaign, write a transcript of the interview as well as complete an analysis of campaign literature and an evaluation of the election outcome.

NWS opened the world to me in a way I never could have imagined. I was exposed to complex issues from both sides — it gave me such incredible information and a different life perspective and the confidence to ‘do,’ to go out in the world. Lynda Turet ’01, Master of Arts in Human Geography, University of Washington

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Discovering High Tech Tools In our yearlong course Advanced Topics in Biology, students engage in exciting lab activities and discussions to discover how genetics can be used as a tool to improve human health. Students research a protein, cancer, virus, and an epidemic of their choice. Through labs, they use modeling (of insulin), transformation (of bacteria to explain insulin production), and electrophoresis (to detect genetic mutations). They also learn to use sophisticated scientific tools like BLAST to detect the BrCa1 gene, and ELISA to test for HIV. Critically, students gain the skills to understand, design, and communicate scientific research. As they push into areas at the forefront of scientific discovery, students debate and grapple with the ethical issues surrounding advancing genetic knowledge and technology.

Manipulating DNA Thanks to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center’s Science Education Partnership, Northwest tenth-graders engage in real-life DNA manipulation. Specifically, they conduct a lab in electrophoresis, one of the methods used in DNA matching for criminal investigations. This lab allows students to actually see the DNA patterns and discern which ones are matching. Visualizing these examples helps students better understand molecular structure.

R E S E A R C H + I M A G I N AT I O N

Embodying Role Models Every Northwest School sixth grader adopts the life of a scientist or mathematician. Choosing a scientist from ancient times to the present, they read a biography, gather research from print and online databases, create an outline, and complete a bibliography. Finally, they collaborate with other classmates to write and perform a scene in which four scientists from diverse disciplines, time periods, and nationalities meet and converse over tea.

M AT H + S E R V I C E

Engaging in Business In our Middle School micro-lending unit, students are given $15 to start a business of their own design. Through that business, they are expected to generate enough money to pay back the loan with a 10% interest rate. Examples of products have included lip gloss, hats shaped like animals, handbags, a fake mustache, and carnival games. On top of teaching math and financial skills, the course is a service project: Students donate their profits to organizations such as Goodwilll Industries and Farestart.


One of the biggest reasons I went into chemistry as a career was my science class at Northwest. Chemistry was tied into everyday life and the class was structured with openended questions. We were told to go out and search for answers, go look it up. The labs were challenging and coupled with the freedom to try things out.


Lewis Elwood Johnson ’03, Chemist and Nanotechnologist


Developing Agile Mindsets

Every year, all of our students immerse in two-week multifaceted explorations designed to take learning to deeper levels. Known as Summits, these courses engage students and faculty in crosscurricular studies that are rooted in our school’s values, history, and mission. Students travel to sites off campus and connect with experts around the city, region, and across the country, learning from those who are grappling with the foremost issues of our time, such as civil rights, climate change, food justice, and the ethics of technology, social media, and the internet. Over the course of the two weeks, students experience new avenues for in-depth, creative, and action-oriented learning.


The Power of Creativity

Complex challenges require creative thinkers. Asking the question is more interesting — and perhaps even more important—than having the answer. We encourage our students to pursue the things that challenge their minds and capture their imagination.

Inspiring students to continually ask questions, to step outside their comfort zones, to see things differently and be open-minded about outcomes, our faculty helps students prepare not just for college but to live life with meaning, purpose, and joy.



Play Production Ensemble

Imagining. Experimenting. Creating.

Students perfect skills of expression, articulation, spatial awareness, and timing in Northwest’s sophisticated and professional theatre productions. Both Middle and Upper School students are challenged with comedic and dramatic plays, ranging from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, adapted by Marcus Goodwin, to Radium Girls by D. W. Gregory and Frank Loesser’s Guys and Dolls. Through the demanding processes of rehearsal and performance, students acquire not only discipline but resilience and composure.


New Media Art Learning how to harness technology as a creative and expressive tool, Northwest students use Adobe Photoshop, iMovie, Audacity, Spoonflower, laser cutters, and even sewing make and learn about video art, Internet art, sound art, installations, digital mapping, and sculptures. Each project explores a different theme or issue, ranging from the prison industrial complex to recording and analyzing dreams to power dynamics in economic trade. Through the process, students develop their personal and public voices and learn how to document their ideas through creating individual portfolios by using social media platforms.


Advanced Photography Through the camera lens and the school’s darkroom, students hone their ability to express ideas. Beginning with five shooting assignments, Advanced Photography students gain sophisticated composition and lighting techniques. In our fully equipped darkroom, they explore archival printing, alternative processes, and color inkjet printing. In class, they discuss contemporary concerns, social responsibility, and alternative presentations, and then synthesize their ideas into individual and group projects.

The photo lab provides a safe place for students to work out ideas, I’m just a guide. I think of photography as being an indicator or catalyst for social change. I ask students, ‘How can your imagery facilitate a conversation?’ That’s where change comes from.

Photography teacher Lyn McCracken



Instrumental and Vocal Music Integral to the music experience at Northwest is the thrill of performance. Students choose to join the Concert Band, Jazz Band, Orchestra, or one of several Choirs, all of which perform in various venues around Seattle. In addition, experienced student musicians have the opportunity to join Northwest School’s House Band. This year-long musical course teaches song writing through the analysis of great standards of folk, indie, rock, Bluegrass, and jazz, followed by the genesis of students’ own songs in the style of each standard. Creativity is paired with arts management skills as students learn how to find gigs, create contracts, self-promote, and work with a recording studio.


Movement and Dance Focus, confidence, and collaboration are skills students develop through Northwest School’s dance classes, ranging from contemporary jazz and popular dance styles to modern, improvisational, and the new challenges of advanced ensemble work.

Everything you dream can be made visible in clay.

Ceramics teacher Randy Silver


Creating in 3D Nurturing the creative instinct is an essential part of learning at The Northwest School. Our ceramics students develop imagination, creativity, risk-taking, and patience as they sculpt, hand-build, and wheel throw pounds of clay in our state-of-the-art ceramics studio.


Global Learning in Action In today’s interconnected world, a global perspective is critical. At The Northwest School, we build global learning into everyday school life. Our boarding program brings up to 60 students from other countries to live on campus and join our community. Domestic students team up with international students in science labs, Humanities debates, athletic teams, and arts productions. We also send students abroad for two - to three -week trips and for extended study. Students can choose to live and attend classes for one trimester or travel to our partner schools in France, Spain, China, Taiwan, or Ethiopia.


Global learning is real learning. Essential to developing a global perspective is the opportunity to immerse in the culture, history, and languages of other countries. At Northwest, global learning is built into everyday school life. Students pursue significant global studies in each grade and have the benefit of studying, playing sports, and forming friendships with boarding students from China, Japan, Korea, Russia, Spain, Turkey, Taiwan, Vietnam, India, and Ethiopia.


Trimester Study Abroad In addition to learning to speak Chinese, French, or Spanish, Northwest students have the opportunity to study abroad for a trimester or travel for short-term programs, made possible through our network of partner schools: Centro Docente MarĂ­a in Seville, Spain, LycĂŠe Emmanuel Mounier in Angers, France, The Affilliated High School of National ChengChi University in Taipei, Taiwan, Dajing High School in Shanghai, China, and Lebawi Academy of Ethiopia in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.


International Trip Opportunities Many of our students find that Northwest’s annual trips abroad, to places such as Spain, China, Taiwan, France, El Salvador, and Ethiopia are transformative experiences. A particularly powerful example is the two-week trip to El Salvador. Students prepare by studying the country’s twelve-year civil war and the 1992 Peace Accord. In El Salvador, they stay with host families, meet and talk with former refugees of the war, and visit historical and cultural sites.

At Northwest, I gained a much broader awareness of things happening outside my life and the larger patterns of conflict in the world. I learned I can take an active role in doing something about them. NWS made me excited to be part of a solution and to want to make things better.

Emma Fuller ’05, Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University


Participating Schools The Northwest School (host) Seattle, Washington


The Virtual Orchestra Project In an exciting collaborative experience, Northwest’s Upper School Orchestra students engage and perform with students from six other schools around the world: Bermuda, Germany, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Hong Kong, and the eastern United States. The project begins with all students introducing themselves by sending each other “video postcards.” Then, in their respective countries, students practice and video record the same piece of music, adapting it to their available instruments. All of these videos are edited together and the final version, with students from all five continents playing in syncopation, is unveiled at our Spring Musical Concert.

Duke Ellington School of the Arts Washington D.C. Cedarbridge Academy Devonshire, Bermuda Lelt Foundation Ensemble Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Musicares Orchestra Wanchai, Hong Kong CJT Gymnasium Lauf an der Pegnitz, Germany Inspire Performing Arts Medan, Indonesia

If music truly is the universal language, then we should be able to transcend all barriers – our borders should disintegrate. That’s what happens with the Virtual Orchestra Project.

Orchestra teacher Jo Nardollilo


Model U.N. Student members of The Northwest School Model U.N. Interest Group participated in the 2018 Pacific Model United Nations Conference in Seattle. As participants, they adopted the role of a country’s delegate in the general assembly or committee of the United Nations, or a United States senator. After working through issues and proposing resolutions to solve global issues, the students took on an emergency crisis simulation. Past crises have centered around rogue nations and disease outbreaks.


North Korea Treaty Simulation Senior Humanities students studying East Asian and the Modern World experience the challenges of diplomacy in a simulated event. Students split into groups representing Russia, China, South Korea, Japan, the United States, and North Korea, and worked towards an agreement in which North Korea tones back its nuclear program. The resulting treaty must be signed by North Korea, China, South Korea, and two of the three other countries. To prep for the simulation, students study Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea, by Barbara Demick, a book featuring over 100 interviews of refugees from Chongjin, North Korea.


Preparing Body and Soul “

I stress that the score is only one aspect of the game – the bigger picture is your integrity. This is much bigger than winning or losing. It’s about getting knocked down, getting back up, and helping your teammate up. It’s about mindfulness: how you are responding to and living your life, both inside and outside of competition.

Britt Atack, NWS Athletics Director

A strong healthy body is fundamental to emotional and intellectual well-being. At The Northwest School, we believe there is an athlete in every student, and when a student finds the right sport he or she thrives and excels. We offer a competitive sports program as well as a full fitness program and encourage students to participate on both school and recreational teams. At every grade level, students practice dedication, discipline, and sportsmanship, learning how to be fit for play and, most importantly, how to be fit for life.


2018 Athletic Honors

2020 Boys Ultimate Team wins Emerald City League Championship (ECL) title. Miles Haon ’20 is named League MVP and, along with teammate Owen D. ’21, named to ECL’s 1st Team. Owen goes on to capture ECL’s 1st Team award in Basketball. Boys Cross Country team captures Emerald City League Championship title with All League honors going to Keegan Minahan ’20, Milo Greenberg ’20, Jarod Polakoff ’20, Lewis W. ’21, Ishaq E. ’21, and Owen Blaine ’20. Girls Cross Country Emerald City League Champion is Greta Herrington ’20, and All League honors go to teammates Haylie B-H. ’21, Maleda S. ’21, and Sasha Balaski ’20

2019 Amelia Hewson ’19 captures the Washington State championship for the 100m hurdles. She is one of eight Northwest Track and Field participants who qualify for the Washington State Championships. Boys’ Track and Field Team members are named Emerald City League Champions. Both Boys’ and Girls’ Ultimate Teams are crowned winners of the Emerald City League. It is the eighth-consecutive league championship for the girls’ team.

Isa Meyers ’18 captures her second consecutive 800m Washington State title. A record 13 Northwest Track and Field participants qualify for the Washington State Championships. Basketball Team member Gabriel Roldan Barrios ’18 sets a Washington State record, shooting 73 percent (11 of 15) from three-point range over four tournament games. Both Boys’ and Girls’ Cross Country Teams are crowned winners of the Emerald City League. Scarlett D. ’19 is named the Co-MVP of the Emerald City League in volleyball. The Volleyball Team finishes with a 15-5 record.

2017 Girls’ Cross Country Team wins Washington State Championship, leading all schools with an average race time of 19:44.4. Also named top D-II squad in the nation by the National High School Coaches Association. Tibs Proctor ’17 captures his second-straight Washington State Championship and is named best D-II boys runner in the nation. Boys’ Basketball Team wins first Emerald City League Championship in school’s history, earning a No. 5 seed in the 1A State Playoff. Boys’ Basketball Team named Washington Interscholastic Activities Association Winter Team Academic State Champions in the 1A classification with an average GPA of 3.843.

2016 Maya Jackson ’16 claims her third consecutive Washington state title in the 400m, and Tibs Proctor ’17 takes first in both the 1600m and 3200m at the Washington State Track and Field Championships.

2015 Four Northwest track athletes win first place in 400m, 800m, 1600m, and 3200m races in Emerald City League Championships.

2014 Boys’ and Girls’ Ultimate Teams capture both Washington State and Regional Ultimate Championships. Cross Country athlete Graham Peet ’15 wins Washington State Championship title in the 5k. Maya Jackson ’16 takes first in the 400m in the Washington State Track and Field Championships.

2010+ Close to 100 graduates have gone on to play sports in Division I Colleges. Alex Olsen ’14 and Owen Freed ’13 helped Carlton College capture the national ultimate title for the men’s division of the 2017 D-I College Championships.

Tibs Proctor ’17 wins the 3200m, and Isa Meyers ’18 captures first in the 800m, at the Washington State Track and Field Championships.

Sam Cook ’15 helped capture the gold medal for the Ultimate Team USA Men’s Junior (U20) National Team in Worclaw, Poland, 2016.

Both Boys’ and Girls’ Track Teams are crowned winners of the Emerald City League Championship.

Maddie Meyers ’12 won the National Sundodger Cross Country Invitational, 2014.

Northwest taught me to be strong and believe in myself as an athlete, and to know that the work I put into practice was really going to help me.

NCAA athlete Maya Jackson ’16, three-time Washington State Champion in 400m


A Culture of “We” We’re a different kind of school: creative, caring, and unconventional. We call each other by first names in order to foster respect, we create opportunities for all grade levels, 6-12, to be together, and we expect each and every student, no matter what age, to act with courtesy and common sense. We embrace our differences and don’t shy away from critical conversations. Together, we clean our space, whether it’s inside the building, out in the wilderness, or in other parts of the world. We create a safe environment in which to try new things, experiment and fail, and try again. And above all, we celebrate and honor who we are.

Community Meeting Every week, the entire school gathers together for Community Meeting. Students of all grade levels and faculty share news and announcements, perform arts pieces, and raise awareness about social justice issues and initiatives.


Honoring Our House and Ourselves Eating to Save the Planet Lunches at Northwest are not only delicious, they are sustainable. We source our meat, fish, and produce as close to home as possible and, periodically, we serve vegetarian meals to raise awareness about the impact of large-scale meat consumption on the environment. Additionally, we compost all food scraps, recycle all recyclable packaging, and favor bulk packaging over individually-wrapped products.

Growing Food and Community Food is core to our lives both as sustenance and as a source of cultural identity. In that spirit, students and faculty designed, built, and planted the school’s first Urban Farm/Garden in 2017, complete with 14 planter boxes, an 8'x6' greenhouse, and a ‘treezebo’ (gazebo with a tree in the center). An adjacent pop-up garden later expanded the school’s growing space to 1,000 square feet, and in 2019, students built a chicken coop and welcomed eight chickens to our campus. Now, year round, students and faculty enjoy fresh eggs as well as seasonal vegetables such as tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, potatoes, kale, bok choi, mixed greens, parsley, and marigolds and other pollinator-friendly flowers. The gardens are maintained and cared for by students from the Environmental Interest Group.

Eating sustainably goes hand in hand with our mission. We want to eliminate waste; we want to be mindful of our carbon footprint; we want the think about social justice and ask if people growing our food are paid fair wages. Food provides that platform.

Director of Dining Services Bethany Fong


Community Conversations Northwest School students of all ages participate in a communitywide conversation about issues of diversity. Organized by Northwest students who attend the Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC), the event provides a forum to discuss identifiers such as race, gender, sexual orientation, and family structure.

Environment Program Taking care of the school is the responsibility of each and every student. Three times a week, everyone in the school cleans the school environment. It’s called the Environment Program and is designed to teach students respect and ownership of space, whether it be in school, out in the neighborhood, or in other parts of the world.

Interest Groups At The Northwest School, if you’ve got a passion you can start an interest group or join one. Some of the current groups include Environmental Interest Group, Middle School Book Club, Internet of Things, Strings and Composition Group, GLAM, Black Student Union, and Social Justice Squad.

NWS ensured you saw the bigger picture, whether it was an integrated science and Humanities curriculum, or Community Meeting, or eating lunch together in the Main Hall. One of the big lessons we all took away was that we were part of something bigger, and that, in whatever way we chose, we should be engaged in that community and contribute in a positive way.

Josh Miller ’96, Conservation Paleontologist, Assistant Research Professor, University of Cincinnati


ArtsFest Every spring, we honor the visual and performing arts with ArtsFest. Before hundreds of friends and family members, students light up the stage at Seattle’s Town Hall with dance, instrumental, spoken word, and a cappella performances.

Celebrating Together

Winterfest Every year, the entire school celebrates science and math with a day-long spectacle known as Winterfest. Middle and Upper School students thrill each other with chemical experiments, catapult competitions, math games, and rocket launches.

International Night Market Hundreds of students and faculty flock to our annual International Night Market, sampling the delicious array of culinary delights from all over the world, including Ethiopia, Korea, Russia, and Japan. This student-led event is a fundraiser for the junior class Migrant Farmworker Trip.


A Home Within Seattle Our House Our main school building is lovingly called The House. In 1980, The Northwest School welcomed its first students through the majestic doors and into sunlit classrooms. The House was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1979, and has been declared an official City of Seattle landmark. A major expansion in 2006 added more classrooms, a computer lab, a library, a dance studio, and a photography lab.

Our Other House Our newest building, 401 E Pike, brings many elements of daily student life into one exciting space. This “vertical campus� makes smart use of every square inch, featuring a league-size Gymnasium, 175-seat Theatre, two-tiered Dining Room, and 6,000 square foot Rooftop Sports Field.

Our Home Away from Home The Northwest School is the only independent school in Seattle with an international boarding program. Our residential dormitory is located across the street from our new building, and houses up to 60 students on gender-specific floors. Common areas include lounges where students can relax and watch TV, laundry facilities, a computer lab, and a study room.


Meet Our Alumni Eva Moore ’94 As a pediatrician and adolescent medicine specialist, Eva works with teens who have eating disorders and with vulnerable populations who are dealing with health inequalities and disparities. She is also a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia, Canada. Eva’s area of research is at-risk youth and she is especially interested in addressing the needs of teens in foster care. After Northwest she received a degree in Chemistry from Bryn Mawr College, attended medical school at The John Hopkins University School of Medicine, and completed her pediatric residency at University of Washington, where she worked closely with recent immigrant families.

Caitlin Foito ’97 Caitlin is Senior Vice President of Development at Miramax Television, currently running the television department and overseeing all pitches and series in development and pre-production. Before landing at Miramax, Caitlin served as VP of Drama Development for ABC Studios. She obtained her B.A. in History and Political Science from Smith College and subsequently moved to Los Angeles initially working as an assistant at Creative Artists Agency. Caitlin credits Northwest with laying the foundation for her career. Humanities was her favorite subject and the enthusiasm of the faculty, she says, “was infectious.”

Nick Jones ’01 Nick is Assistant Professor of Spanish and Africana Studies at Bucknell University. He holds a Ph.D. in Iberian Literature and Cultural Studies from New York University and a B.A. from Haverford College. In addition to his role at Bucknell, he is a visiting scholar at Georgetown University. Nick specializes in literature between 1400 and 1700, from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. His research focuses on race, gender, and sexuality in Spain and Portugal and their colonial kingdoms.

Dylan Meconis ’01 Writer, illustrator and graphic novelist, Dylan is the author of Queen of The Sea (2019), a graphic novel loosely based on actual historical events about a young girl, Margaret, who grows up on an isolated island convent. The book received generous praise from The New York Times and Dylan was recently interviewed by NPR. Following Northwest, she attained an Interdisciplinary Humanities degree from Wesleyan University. Dylan, who is drawn to historical fiction, is also the author of Bite Me! and Family Man, among other publications.

Adlen Keefe Sampson ’09 Alden is Cofounder of Upstream Tech, a water intelligence software platform that combines satellite imagery, geospatial datasets, and machine learning to help environmental conservationists, energy companies, and municipalities more effectively manage freshwater resources. In 2018 Alden and his business partner were named to Forbes 30 Under 30: Energy. Upstream Tech is now informing decision making at The Nature Conservancy, National Forest Foundation, and The Freshwater Trust.





Year founded

Grade levels

Total school enrollment




Middle School enrollment

Upper School enrollment

International students




Students of color (not including international)

Number of boarding students

Faculty of color




Families receiving financial aid

Average financial aid award

Average class size




Number of Outdoor Program trips

Times per week students lead Environment teams to maintain campus grounds

Countries of Global Partner Schools: China, Taiwan, France, Ethiopia, Spain, El Salvador




Teaching faculty with advanced degrees

Number of international trips each year

Arts electives

Facts & Figures


Admission Deadlines Important dates for applying for the 2020-21 school year for domestic students September 14

Application and tour registration online at

November 8

Upper School Open House

November 15

Middle School Open House

December 4

Preliminary Application Deadline for optimal visit day schedule

January 14

Application Deadline


ISEE/SSAT Deadline (testing not required this year)

February 4

Financial Aid Deadline

February 19

Upper School Decision Notification

February 26

Upper School Family Response Deadline

March 19

Middle School Decision Notification

March 26

Middle School Family Response Deadline

Steps to apply to The Northwest School 1. Submit an online application at 3. Please note the ISEE or SSAT admissions beginning September 14, and pay the $70 application fee.

2. Submit the following supplemental materials:

• Parent Questionnaire

• Student Interest Sheet

• Evaluations from 2 current teachers

• The current year transcript, and the past two years’ transcripts

• Student essay

test is not required this year. To ensure an equitable process, Admissions Committee members will not have access to score reports if they are submitted.

4. Attend a student visit day and (optional)

parent information session. The NWS Admissions Office will send you a student visit appointment and information about parent sessions once you submit an application.

Contact us Please contact Admissions at 206.682.7309 x6032 or email at with any questions.

International Admission Application deadlines • The first round application deadline is January 8, 2021. • The second round application deadline is February 5, 2021. • Applications received after February 5 will be considered in a rolling review process based on space availability.

Steps to apply toThe Northwest School 1. Submit an online application at 3. Submit the supplemental application beginning September 14, and pay the $100 application fee. Please contact us if you need a PDF or printed copy of the complete application.

2. Submit one of the following English language proficiency test scores: • DUOLINGO English Test (DET) (preferred) • TOEFL: The Northwest School institution code for the TOEFL is 1715 • IELTS • iTEP-SLATE • EIKEN • TOEFL Jr.

materials, including:

• Financial Statement Complete the statement and have it certified by your bank/financial institute. • Student Questionnaire Complete and return to the school. • Math and English Assessments (optional) Give to current math and English teachers, respectively. Ask them to return the forms to The Northwest School. • Transcript Release Send to the school in which the student is currently enrolled, and to any other schools the student has attended in the past two years.

4. Qualified applicants will be invited to have an interview (Skype, Zoom, or in-person) with an admissions representative.

Contact us Please contact:John “Jack” Lloyd, Assistant Director of Admissions–International, at 206.682.7309 x 6080, or email with any questions.


Affording The Northwest School Tuition for 2020-21 Academic Year




Middle School (Grades 6-8)

Upper School (Grades 9-12)



Includes tuition ($37,625) lunch ($1,450)

Includes tuition (39,825) lunch ($1,450)



Includes tuition ($44,560) lunch ($1,450) health insurance ($575)

Includes tuition ($44,560) lunch ($1,450) health insurance ($575)



Financial Aid We strive to educate a socio-economically diverse student body, and encourage families to apply for financial aid. Our financial aid process is designed to help us achieve this goal as fairly as possible. Twenty-two percent of Northwest families receive financial aid, with award sizes ranging from a few thousand dollars to the full cost of tuition, based on the family’s calculated need. • We fund 100% of determined financial need. • Average financial aid award for 2020-21 is $30,212 (76% of an Upper School Tuition). • 30 of 103 financial aid recipients are receiving 100% financial aid. • Every family receiving financial aid has all extra fees covered at 100% by the Northwest Experience Fund (see right). • Last year the Northwest Experience Fund paid for over $225K in fees for families receiving financial aid.

Applying for Financial Aid Families who apply for financial aid must demonstrate financial need through completion

of the Parents’ Financial Statement (PFS), which can be completed online at, starting October 2, 2020. The Northwest School uses the results from the PFS to calculate financial need. The financial aid process is separate from the admissions process. The deadline for financial aid applications and all supporting documentation (for both Upper and Middle School families) to be received is February 4, 2021. To learn more about the Financial Aid program, go to and choose “Admissions” from the menu.

For Additional Expenses: The Northwest Experience Fund (XFund) We believe in creating an equitable grade-level experience in which every student can access resources, and opt in to all school programs, without concern for their family’s ability to pay. The XFund provides support for the additional costs beyond tuition that contribute to a full and successful experience at the school. These costs include everything from calculators and athletic gear to trip fees, instrument rental, tutoring, and more. During the time of COVID, the X-Fund provided internet access for those families who did not already have it, as well as temporary grocery assistance for families who were hit the hardest by the pandemic and the ensuing shutdown. In most cases the XFund is accessed automatically for families receiving financial aid, but if you have any questions about making use of it, please contact Jonathan Hochberg, Director of Financial Aid.

Contact us: If you have additional questions after reviewing the financial aid process and policies on our website, please contact: Jonathan Hochberg, Director of Financial Aid,at 206.816.6210 or


College Acceptance & Matriculation Members of the Classes of 2016-2020 were accepted to the following colleges (bold type indicates intent to matriculate): Agnes Scott College

Bowdoin College

The University of Alabama

Brandeis University

American University

University of British Columbia

The American University of Paris

Bryn Mawr College

Amherst College

Bucknell University

Arizona State University-Tempe

California College of the Arts

The University of Arizona

California Institute of Technology

ArtCenter College of Design

California Institute of the Arts

College of the Atlantic

California Lutheran University

Claremont McKenna College

Babson College

California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Clark University

Bard College Barnard College Bates College Bellevue College

Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo California State University, Long Beach

Central Washington University Champlain College Chapman University University of Chicago University of Cincinnati

Clemson University Colby College Colgate University University of Colorado Boulder

Belmont University

California State University, Sacramento

Beloit College

University of California, Berkeley

Bennington College

University of California, Davis

University of Colorado Colorado Springs

Bentley University

University of California, Irvine

Colorado Mesa University

Berklee College of Music

University of California, Los Angeles

Colorado School of Mines

Boise State University Boston College Boston University

University of California, Riverside University of California, San Diego University of California, Santa Barbara University of California, Santa Cruz Cardiff University Carleton College Carnegie Mellon University Case Western Reserve University

Colorado College

Colorado State UniversityFort Collins Columbia College Chicago Columbia University in the City of New York Connecticut College University of Connecticut Cornell College Cornell University Cornish College of the Arts CUNY-Macaulay Honors College Dartmouth College

University of Delaware

Hampshire College

Loyola Marymount University

Denison University

Harvard College

Loyola University Chicago

University of Denver

Harvey Mudd College

Loyola University Maryland

DePaul University

Haverford College

Loyola University New Orleans

DePauw University

University of Hawaii at Manoa

Lynn University

Dickinson College

Hawaii Pacific University

Macalester College

Dominican University of California

University of Houston

University of Maine

Howard University

Manhattan College

CUNY Hunter College

Manhattanville College

University of Idaho

Marist College

University of Illinois at Chicago

Maryland Institute College of Art

Earlham College

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

University of MarylandCollege Park

Eastern Washington University

Illinois Institute of Technology

Marymount California University

Eckerd College

Indiana University-Bloomington

Elon University

University of Iowa

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Prescott

Ithaca College

Drew University Drexel University Duke University Duquesne University

Emerson College Emily Carr University of Art + Design Emory University The Evergreen State College Fashion Institute of Technology Florida Institute of Technology University of Florida Fordham University Franklin and Marshall College George Washington University Georgetown University Gonzaga University Goucher College Grinnell College Hamilton College

John Cabot University Johnson & Wales University, Providence Juniata College Kalamazoo College Kenyon College King's College London La Salle University

Marymount Manhattan College

University of La Verne

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS)

Lafayette College Laguna College of Art and Design Lake Forest College Lawrence University Lehigh University Lewis & Clark College Linfield University

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Massachusetts Institute of Technology University of MassachusettsAmherst McGill University


College Acceptance & Matriculation • continued

McMaster University Miami University-Oxford University of Miami Michigan State University

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of North Texas Northeastern University Northern Arizona University University of Notre Dame Oberlin College Oberlin Conservatory of Music Occidental College Ohio Wesleyan University

Middlebury College Mills College University of Minnesota, Morris University of Minnesota, Twin Cities University of Missouri-Columbia Montana State University University of Montana Morehouse College Morgan State University Mount Holyoke College Mount Saint Mary's University, Los Angeles Muhlenberg College The New England Conservatory of Music

Reed College Regis University Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Rhode Island School of Design Richmond, The American International University in London Ringling College of Art and Design

University of Oregon

Rochester Institute of Technology

Oregon State University

University of Rochester

Otis College of Art and Design

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Pace University-New York University of MichiganAnn Arbor

University of Redlands

Pacific Lutheran University

Rutgers UniversityNew Brunswick

Pacific Northwest College of Art

Saint Joseph's University

Pacific University

Saint Louis University

University of the Pacific

Saint Martin's University

Pennsylvania State University

Saint Mary's College of California

Pepperdine University University of PittsburghPittsburgh Campus

Saint Xavier University

Pitzer College

San Diego State University

Pomona College

University of San Diego

Portland State University

San Francisco State University

University of Portland

University of San Francisco

Pratt Institute Princeton University University of Puget Sound SUNY at Purchase College Purdue University-Main Campus

New York University

Quest University Canada

NYU Shanghai

Randolph College

San Diego City College

San Jose State University Santa Clara University Sarah Lawrence College Savannah College of Art and Design

School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London School of the Art Institute of Chicago School of Visual Arts

The University of Texas at Austin The American Musical and Dramatic Academy The New School

University of Washington, Bothell University of Washington, Seattle

The Ohio State University

University of Washington, Tacoma

Seattle Central College

University of Toronto Undergraduate Only

Wellesley College

Seattle Pacific University

Trinity College

Wentworth Institute of Technology

Seattle University

Trinity University

Seton Hall University

Truman State University

Skidmore College

Tufts University

Smith College

Tulane University

Soka University of America

Union College

Sophia University

United States Naval Academy

University of Southern California

University College London

Southern Methodist University

University of Glasgow

Southern Oregon University

University of Sydney

Spelman College

Ursinus College

St Bonaventure University

University of Utah

Saint Edward's University

Vanderbilt University

St. John's University (NY)

Vassar College

Westmont College

St Lawrence University

University of Vermont

St Olaf College

University of Victoria

Wheaton College Massachusetts

Stanford University

Villanova University

Stevens Institute of Technology

Virginia Commonwealth University (School of the Arts)

Scripps College

Stony Brook University, State University of New York

Wesleyan University Western Washington University

Whitman College Whittier College Whitworth University

Wagner College

Willamette University

Suffolk University

Wake Forest University

William and Mary

Swarthmore College

Warren Wilson College

Williams College

Syracuse University

Washington College

Temple University

Washington State University

University of WisconsinMadison

Texas A&M University

Washington University in St Louis

The University of Texas at Arlington

The College of Wooster Worcester Polytechnic Institute Yale University


Sample Schedule • Middle School Sample 6th Grade Student Schedule School day: 8:00am-3:30pm • 80-minute periods most days • 10-day cycle

Week One






Morning Meeting Humanities

MS Band




Break Math




Humanities Lunch



Community Meeting

Science 10:10-11:10







Interest Group Lego Robotics

Humanities 9:50-11:10

Lunch Health & Wellness

Lunch Lunch





Spanish 12:30-1:50

Environment Ceramics

Science 10:10-11:30





Study Hall





MS Band






Office Hours

Schedule Highlights: Classes are 80 minutes long (except Wednesdays, which has 60-minute classes). Consistent use of long blocks allows for depth, thoughtfulness, and a variety of teaching and learning modes. The 10-day (or two-week) cycle means all classes (Humanities excepted) will meet M/W/F of one week, and T/Th of the next.

Week Two








Break Ceramics




Humanities MS Band

Wednesday Morning Meeting Humanities 8:10-9:10

Community Meeting

Math 10:10-11:10








Interest Group

Environmental Action

Science 9:50-11:10

MS Band 10:10-11:30



MS Band







Lunch Lunch Environment

6th Grade Meeting

Environment PE

PE 12:30-1:50

Study Hall











Morning Meeting is a ten-minute gathering for Middle School students and faculty to start the day together. Community Meeting is an all-school gathering on every Wednesday morning.

Office Hours

Environment, which meets three times per week, gives cross-grade teams of students a chance to take responsibility for keeping up the House. After school, students participate in a variety of activities, including coding class for Middle Schoolers, sports games and meets, and after school care in the library.


Sample Schedule • Upper School Sample 9th Grade Student Schedule

Week One

School day: 8:10am-3:30pm • 80-minute periods most days • 10-day cycle




French I



Class Meeting

Break Act Out!





Wednesday Geometry 8:10-9:10

Community Meeting


Thursday Humanities





Interest Group Coding Club

Physical Science






Lunch Physical Science 12:10-1:30

Interest Group


Geometry 10:10-11:30




Social Justice Squad

Ceramics 12:20-1:20

Act Out! 12:10-1:30


Environment Humanities







French I






Office Hours

Schedule Highlights: Classes are 80 minutes long (except Wednesdays, which has 60-minute classes). Consistent use of long blocks allows for depth, thoughtfulness, and a variety of teaching and learning modes. The 10-day (or two-week) cycle means all classes (Humanities excepted) will meet M/W/F of one week, and T/Th of the next.

Week Two



Act Out!




Class Meeting

Break PE




Geometry Lunch

French I

Wednesday Humanities 8:10-9:10

Community Meeting

Act Out! 10:10-11:10





Physical Science




Interest Group

Interest Group Coding Club

Humanities 9:50-11:10

French I 10:10-11:30

Lunch Lunch




French I





Environment Physical Science




Social Justice Squad

Physical Science



Act Out!







Community Meeting is an all-school gathering on every Wednesday morning. Environment, which meets three times per week, gives cross-grade teams of students a chance to take responsibility for keeping up the House.

Office Hours

After school, students participate in a variety of activities, including sports practices and games, and rehearsals for theatre, dance, and music performances.


Come visit our House!

We look forward to meeting you, whether virtually or in person. Please join us for our fall virtual Open House, or a virtual tour or visit for students who are applying for the upcoming school year. We invite you to continue your exploration of The Northwest School through our website and on social media. Our Admissions Team is happy to talk with you about the school application process, so feel free to contact us. Michele Sanchez Director of Admissions & Enrollment Management Dmitry Sherbakov Director of Global Programs & Marketing Jonathan Hochberg Director of Financial Aid John “Jack� Lloyd Assistant Director of Admission - International

Admissions contact info: for domestic applicants

Maggie Ball Assistant Director of Admissions Flor Hernandez-Morales Admissions Coordinator for international applicants 206.816.6032

Nondiscrimination Policy The Northwest School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender, disability, use of service animals, national or ethnic origin, or any other trait or characteristic protected by law in admission of otherwise qualified students; in providing access to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at The Northwest School; or in its administration of educational policies, admissions policies, financial aid, athletics, and other school-administered programs.

An easy way to know what our students and faculty are doing every day at The Northwest School is through our social media channels. You can follow us on: Facebook: @NorthwestSchool Twitter: @northwestschool @NWSathletics Instagram: @thenorthwestschool @nwsathletics

@nws.sustainability The Director of Environmental Education and Sustainability keeps us in the loop on Northwest projects involving environmental sustainability. Our Director of Dining Services shares lively culinary news and fun facts about food from Northwest’s kitchen and dining hall. @TheHouseArts The Visual Arts department captures a wide variety of the art projects our students engage in every day.

Follow Northwest!

Our Mission

The Northwest School offers a faculty who engage each student in sequential, cross-disciplinary study in the Humanities, Sciences, and the Arts. We are a diverse community of people who challenge each other to learn in a healthy, creative, and collaborative atmosphere of respect for others, the environment, and ourselves. We graduate students with historical, scientific, artistic, and global perspective, enabling them to think and act with integrity, believing they have a positive impact on the world.

1415 Summit Ave • Seattle, WA 98122 p 206.682.7309 • f 206.467.7353 •