David Brearley Middle/High School

David Brearley Middle-High School serves students in Grades 7-12 from Kenilworth, Winfield, and surrounding communities that who participate in the School Choice Program. Brearley works to promote diversity among its student body by being one of the first and largest Choice Middle-High Schools in New Jersey for students looking for a rigorous academic challenge in a small and nurturing environment.

The middle school and high school operate on a nine period schedule. Thanks to a very comprehensive and rich Program of Studies, all learners’ needs are addressed. Students in the middle school sample a variety of cycle classes throughout the year ranging from Music, Art, Gym, and World Language. To supplement the regular high school program, Virtual High School is offered to those who wish to take courses that are not offered on-site.

In addition to the regular scope of programming, David Brearley Middle/High School introduced the Scholars’ Academy in 2012. The Academy is a gifted and talented program that serves young adults in Grades 7-12. Students must apply and be selected to join the Academy and once accepted must maintain a high grade point average and follow a prescribed and highly rigorous curriculum. Academy students choose a career strand when they enter senior year (referred to as Junior College Year) and take courses at Union County College. The Academy mandates a community service requiring graduates to have amassed 80 years of contributions before leaving Brearley.

Brearley also offers its most at-risk students the opportunity to complete high school in an alternative program called ACE. The ACE program allows the students to take approved online courses that are self-paced and adapted to their skill needs and level. The program runs after the standard school day and provides an alternative environment for students to thrive. ACE also employs the services of a school counselor and clinical social worker to provide support and address any underlying issues that the students may have.

Students at David Brearley participate in many clubs and activities. The National Honor Society and Bears That Care perform service projects for the school and community such as the Annual Blood Drive. Student Council sponsors a Spirit Week each semester. Students contribute original poetry and prose to the school literary magazine; publish the school newspaper and create the school yearbook. Over 83% of the students participate in one or more sports or extracurricular activities. In addition, there are copious evening activities that foster community and school spirit such as movie nights, dances, talent shows and non-competitive athletic events. The building is open and available for other community events as well. David Brearley Middle/High School is a test-center for both the PSAT and SAT for local and surrounding districts and students have the opportunity to join preparatory classes’ afterschool.

There are many opportunities for students to participate in the arts. Art and Music classes are offered during the school day and extend to after school clubs and activities such as the drama production, a whole school musical and a middle school play. The band and chorus both hold winter and spring concerts and the students and staff collaborate every year to hold the annual and very popular Brearley Art Show. The Art Show showcases the work of the students and brings in the Kenilworth and surrounding communities for a night of presentations, awards, food, fun and love of the arts. In collaboration with the New Jersey Arts Council, the art department received a grant to host a visiting artist that teaches classes and guides the students in creating art in the school. The beautiful mosaic tile work is seen in all hallways and the garden area hosts a mosaic tree, benches and eating area.

In order to celebrate the varied accomplishments of the students, the Renaissance Program recognizes students who have achieved Honor Roll and Distinguished Honor Roll each marking period. The Academic Booster Club also celebrates superior achievements in academic areas, awarding students during an evening event with their families.

Parents and community members support the Parent Teacher Organization that meets monthly during the school year. In addition to offering generous scholarships, the PTO hosts an all-night extravaganza for seniors, Project Graduation, immediately following the graduation ceremony.

Kenilworth Public Schools recognizes that the demands of the 21st century require educators to ensure that each student is raised in a healthy, safe, engaging, and supportive learning environment. Harding and David Brearley Schools look at the “whole child” when collaboratively writing curricula and identifying best practice teaching strategies, supporting teachers with professional development, and investing in the local community in decision-making about the future of its schools. For more information, visit