"...even with all his achievements, it has always been Josh's love for the students and community that sets him apart."

A Message from

Laura Gowen

President
Board of Trustees

Michael Barak

Past President
Board of Trustees

Dear Sequoyah School Community,

It is with sadness for our community and joy for Josh and his family that we write to inform you that Josh Brody, our head of school for nearly 20 years, will be leaving Sequoyah to become the new Principal at Preshil, The Margaret Lyttle Memorial School in Melbourne, Australia.

We are so grateful for Josh’s extraordinary leadership over the past two decades. He has been instrumental in the school’s strategic and operational successes, guiding Sequoyah through the K-8 expansion, establishing the high school, and managing the enormous challenges of COVID-19, just to name a few. And, even with all his achievements, it has always been Josh’s love for the students and community that sets him apart. His favorite Sequoyah activities include All-School Meetings, camping trips, meeting new families, and attending Gryphon sporting events and art/science exhibitions.

Josh has given much of himself to our school and our community. His efforts have helped Sequoyah become recognized as a leader in progressive education, and his stewardship has benefited the school immeasurably.

As the current and incoming Presidents of the Board of Trustees, we are mindful that our most important duty is to ensure that Sequoyah has strong, capable, and caring leadership that furthers Sequoyah’s mission and values. We have established a Board Committee to lead the search for a new head of school, with an open possibility to position an interim head before selecting a final candidate. Josh’s last day will be December 31, 2021, which will provide time for him to assist with transitioning his responsibilities.

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, we look forward to continuing to work with Josh over the next seven months as we make a smooth transition to our next Head of School. We also look forward to celebrating Josh’s many accomplishments and thanking him for his exceptional service to Sequoyah. Of course, we wish him, his wife, Angelica, and his two children, Noa and Mateo, much happiness and success Down Under.

Sincerely,

Laura Gowen
President, Board of Trustees

Michael Barak
Past President, Board of Trustees

A Message from

Josh Brody

Head of School

Dear Sequoyah School Community,

Around 20 years ago, Jennifer Frank, Sequoyah’s Board President at the time, asked me to join a search committee to hire the next director of Sequoyah School. I had been working abroad on an education project in Nepal, but my plan was to return to California due to family circumstances.

Sequoyah was and continues to be a unique school environment, and that search committee was not finding applicants who they thought would be the right fit for the position. When one of my fellow committee members suggested that I might be a good candidate, I was flattered but was also somewhat set on the path I had embarked on to work in international education.

As I thought more about it, however, I realized what an incredible opportunity it would be to work for a school whose mission and values meant so much to me. I also realized that of all the places I could think of to spend my days back in Southern California, there was no place I would rather be day-in and day-out than beyond the log at Sequoyah School – eating hot lunch on the patio, playing basketball on the upper, capture the flag on the lower, reading stories in the Backyard, earning innerland dollars in the Over There, listening to students’ Talking Leaves and Social Innovation Program project presentations at the high school campus, singing at an All-School Meeting, dancing a teddy bear waltz, and yes, sitting in lots of meetings in my office!

I am now completing my 18th year as head of school and I couldn’t have been more correct; there is no place I would have rather spent my days. I could not be any more grateful for the opportunity I have had to lead Sequoyah School these past years, and am writing now to share that this coming year I will be moving on from my position as Sequoyah’s head of school.

I have accepted a position to lead an International Baccalaureate World School in Melbourne, Australia. This will be a significant change for my family and me, and while my heart breaks a little each time I think of leaving Sequoyah School, I am also excited to work and live abroad again and hopefully contribute to the growth of another progressive school community. I am also aware that a new perspective and the fresh eyes brought by Sequoyah’s next head of school will be an opportunity for the school to keep developing in new and perhaps unexpected ways that can be healthy for the institution.

My time at Sequoyah has at times been challenging, always rewarding, and more than anything, filled with learning and a sense of community. I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish together. Developing our Habits of Mind with the faculty, planning our first All-School Meeting with the students, implementing indexed tuition with the board, the growth of our K-8 campus, and the addition of a high school division — all this and so much more will live on in my memory.

In addition, my memories are filled with students and families showing warmth and compassion towards each other and the school – and the tremendous dedication of the Sequoyah School faculty and staff to those students and families. I have had the distinct pleasure to see many who were Sequoyah students during my tenure join the ranks of our wonderful faculty and staff. In addition, I could not have asked for a more thoughtful and supportive group of trustees. I am confident the school is in wonderful hands with board leadership deeply committed to the school’s mission to challenge the mind, nurture the heart, and celebrate human dignity, now and into the future. I know the school will continue to grow and change and with that will come challenges. I believe this to be a strong community with students, parents, faculty, staff, alumni, and trustees all willing to face challenges while always remembering to see the humanity in one another.

Many of you know that Sequoyah School and the people who make up the school have been a part of my life for nearly my entire life. I’ve experienced Sequoyah as a student, the child of a longtime teacher, the brother of another teacher, the head of school, and now as a parent. While after next year I won’t be part of the school’s day-to-day comings and goings, I and my family will still count ourselves as part of the Sequoyah community. No matter where I am, there will be no one cheering more loudly than I for the school’s ongoing success.

With sincere gratitude,
Josh

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