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Our Story

Welcome to Park Century School!

Neurodiversity makes humanity brilliant, full stop.

The rich tapestry of human life is creative and productive and helpful and inventive because we all think differently, not in spite of that fact. Understanding this profound truth is important for a school that uses a strength-based approach to educating neurodivergent children.

We know that your family may have weathered frustrating and potentially traumatic experiences in other educational settings. We empathize and are here to support you beyond that as we work together to unlock your child’s incredible potential.

At Park Century, children encounter a community of compassionate professionals committed to providing each child with foundational tools for lifelong learning and achievement. Our staff is dedicated to educating the whole child by providing a strategically tailored program that will challenge and nurture while emphasizing academic, social, and personal growth.

Park Century students typically have language-based learning challenges and are most commonly diagnosed with Dyslexia and ADHD. We address these challenges and other learning differences with a customized program that is developed by a team of teachers and is based on the child’s individual needs and strengths.

The academic team, together with the Park Century community, also provides social emotional support. We foster our students’ healthy self-image by empowering them to become active participants in their own learning and advocates for their own education.

All the teachers are so sweet and understanding.

Park Century also provides support for the family. Our Parents Association and Parent Education program support our families in understanding the academic and emotional growth of their children and how that relates to the family as a whole.

Park Century students are not defined by their learning differences, and neither is their education. Our students are creative thinkers, award-winning speakers, talented athletes, gifted artists, imaginative scientists, and most importantly, good, kind people. ​

When children leave Park Century, they know that learning differently does not define who they are. They see themselves as brilliant, out-of-the-box thinkers who are resilient self-advocates ready for the futures that lie ahead.  ​

Come and see the transformation for yourselves!

Our Mission

Park Century School empowers bright children with learning differences to reach their academic and personal potential. Students flourish within our tailored, evidence-based curriculum and supportive environment. In collaboration with their families, the school inspires students to develop into resilient self-advocates and builds a foundation for lifelong achievement.

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Our Story

Park Century began in 1968 when our founder, Sheila Cohn, was unable to find an educational program that could support her son’s learning differences.

During the ’60s, there were no options for brilliant students who learned differently. Her son’s public school could not offer tailored support for students who didn’t fit the typical learner’s profile, and there were few private or specialized schools for these students.

Ms. Cohn took action to support her son by pulling him out of a mainstream school, working with his tutor to design a tailored program that could best meet his needs, and opening a specialized “school” in the living room of a Century City apartment. Leading a long line of successful Park Century graduates who were able to recognize their own learning profiles and apply strategies retained long after transitioning out of Park Century, our first student went on to a fulfilling and successful career in city planning.

My child got their smile back and we got our family back.

The “Century” in our name is an homage to that first Century City classroom. Prior to living in California, Ms. Cohn’s children attended a school in England called Putney Park, and she added the “Park” to our name to invoke the warmth of that familiar educational setting.   

Park Century’s singular program, coupled with Ms. Cohn’s efforts to raise awareness, created a buzz in the local parent community. Even those whose children were not affected by learning differences lent their support early on because they believed in the project and the need for change in education to encompass all types of learners. After enrollment grew to ten students, Park Century moved to an office suite in Santa Monica, which was converted to a school by making individual rooms painted different colors with couches and therapeutic spaces for children to do their lessons.

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Rooted in Artistic Design

Rooted in Artistic Design Today, we have outgrown our former locations and now reside in an educational building specially designed to accommodate our student population. Following city code that all new buildings and remodels must include an artistic and/or architectural interest, the design committee tapped alumni Alejandro Gehry’s (class of ’92) iconic architect father, Frank, to lend his design expertise. Using the logo as his inspiration, Mr. Gehry incorporated trees and stars into a colorful glass design that adorns the entire front of the building.

Park Century exists because of one determined mother who saw her son’s potential, and though we now teach more than 100 brilliant students, our mission remains steadfast in support of its original purpose—to educate neurodivergent students and to give them the tools and the confidence to effectively advocate for their own education.