Dear Northwest School Families,

The mission of the Northwest School (NWS) Parent/Guardian Association (PGA) is to build and foster a collaborative and supportive parent/guardian community and to provide a network of communication between NWS families, faculty, administration and the Board of Trustees. We are committed to supporting the NWS’s philosophy of educating students with historical, scientific, artistic and global perspective, thus enabling our students to think critically and act with integrity.

As a parent or guardian of a NWS student, you are automatically a member of the PGA, and you are encouraged to join in the activities that the PGA sponsors. You can attend PGA Education Forums, where important parenting topics are discussed. You can serve as a PGA Grade Level Lead, and help facilitate and enhance communication between parents/guardians, and between parents/guardians and the administration; or volunteer your time and expertise in another capacity. There are many volunteer opportunities available! You can attend Heads of School coffees where issues that affect NWS families and students as well as the NWS’s educational and administrative practices are shared. You are welcome to participate in activities celebrating the school’s diversity and creativity, communicate with other families to coordinate social events, or support school community members in times of need. Click here to see the parent/guardian engagement frameworks developed by school administrators.

However you choose to be involved, we hope that you find within the PGA a community that welcomes and supports you and your family. Please feel free to contact your Grade Level Lead, or any of us, with questions or comments.


Juanita McLaughlin, Elizabeth Kiyasu
PGA Division Co-Chairs, Middle School

Nan Noble, Bonnie Porter, and Aya Sethi
Domestic PGA Division Co-Chairs, Upper School

Patricia Taraday
International PGA Division Chair, Upper School

Parent/Guardian Association Goals

  • To promote a sense of community and encourage open communication between families and the Northwest School faculty, administration, and Board of Trustees
  • To provide educational opportunities for parents and guardians through various Parent/Guardian Association forums, groups, and activities (click here to learn more about parent/guardian engagement opportunities)
  • To support the Northwest School’s mission and philosophy by attending to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in our practices
  • To promote participation with school events, programs and activities

Parent/Guardian Association Structure

The Parent/Guardian Association is a self-perpetuating group that is approved by the Board of Trustees. All parents and guardians of The Northwest School are members of our Parent/Guardian Association. The leadership of the Parent/Guardian Association is comprised of Co-Chairs for the Middle School, Co-Chairs for the Upper School, and parent/guardians working with Department Directors to further parent/guardian engagement within the school. 

There are three or more volunteer Domestic Parent Leads per grade who provide a vital communication link between domestic families and administration, as well as one to two International Parent Representatives per Upper School grade who provide a similar communication link between international students, their families (on occasion) and the school. Annual Parent/Guardian Association Meetings hosted by school administrators are also convened overseas, usually in Beijing, Shanghai, and Taipei. Meetings have also been held in Seoul, Shenzhen, and Tokyo in recent years.

Role of Parent/Guardian Leads

  • Serve as a way for new and existing families to connect to each other and the school
  • Serve as ambassadors for the school's programs
  • Direct families to the best ways of having their questions answered
  • Invite families to participate in school events and social events
  • Create opportunities for all families to participate (e.g. varying the time of day for the purpose of equity)
  • Oversee the year-long programming for Family Education
  • Play an active role in reviewing survey questions and providing input
  • Participate in meetings each trimester, during which the survey results will be presented and discussed

Parent Events