The 5 Most Surprising Things About L.A. Private Elementary School

My daughter at the National Constitution Center, Philadelphia
My daughter at the National Constitution Center, Philadelphia

I’ve been a parent at two very different L.A. private schools over the past eight years. There’s a lot I expected to see (and I did) like luxury cars, Chanel handbags and enormous homes. But, some stuff has been truly unexpected.


Here are the 5 things I’ve been most surprised by:


1. The number of grandparents who pay their grandkids’ tuition.


2. The willingness of parents to pull their kids out of school for extremely fancy vacations to Thailand, Europe, Africa, Tahiti, Turks & Caicos and other destinations.


3. The amount of school and extracurricular activities per kid.


4. How little influence parents really have unless they’re a board member or the BFF of a board member.


5. The big HUGE emphasis on sports.



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Christina Simon: Los Angeles, California, United States I'm the mom of two kids who attended The Willows School in Culver City and Viewpoint School in Calabasas. My daughter is a graduate of Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism ('23) and my son is a sophomore at UPenn/Wharton ('26). I live in Coldwater Canyon with my husband, Barry, and our dogs. Contact me at

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