OPUS119 Middle & High stands upon solid foundations. The school is built on proven experience, the latest in education science, and a history of passion around thinking and learning.
Ethan Yi Dong, founder of the OPUS119 School of Music and College Conservatory of Music, came to America to study at Crossroads School. A superb pianist, he thrived alongside Mary Ann Cummins and eventually learned about the power of progressive education from her husband, Paul Cummins, lead founder of Crossroads. Ethan’s time at Paul’s school had a lasting effect. Over the years, he came to realize that his experience of learning was atypical in the U.S. The seed was planted and, after attending Yale University, Ethan returned to California to open his music school in Irvine.
After many years of running a successful music program, Ethan reached out to his dear friend, Paul, with a few ideas. He recognized that truly innovative education had not yet arrived in Orange County. It was time to change that. In September 2018, OPUS119 will expand to a full-day middle and high school, serving grades 6-9 in its first year, and then adding grades 10-12 in successive years. This new progressive approach is modeled after very successful schools co-created by Paul Cummins, Crossroads, New Roads, and TREE Academy, and the Sycamore School, co-founded by Tedd Wakeman.
Wakeman joins the team as an experienced educator and dynamic leader, becoming the school’s founding director. He and Cummins have worked together on various educational projects in the past. For these three passionate and enthusiastic voices in education, OPUS119 serves as an amazing opportunity to create a school for effective 21st Century learning.
OUR ADVISORY BOARD
Mary Ann Cummins - Founder of the Elizabeth Mandell Music Institute at Crossroads School
Darryl Sollerh - Co-Founder and Director of Tree Academy
Anna Cummins and Marcus Eriksen - Co-Founders of 5 Gyres Institute
Amy Pascal - Chairperson of the Motion Pictures Group of Sony's Columbia Pictures
Jeanie Buss - Owner and President of Los Angeles Lakers
AJ Webster & Christy Durham - Co-Founders of Sycamore School
Bing Yeh - Luka International Arts & Cultural Foundation