In 1948, Edna Mae Dye came to California from Iowa with her husband, George, and three sons, Robert, Philip, and Don. As a teacher herself, she longed to provide an excellent education to as many students as she could reach. "This then, became the Pinecrest ideal; the intellectual, moral, and physical development of each student."
In 1951, Mrs. Dye opened the first campus in Van Nuys. The San Fernando Valley was beginning to develop, and Pinecrest was the first private school in the area. This first campus served as a Boarding School The property had originally been purchased from Bob Cummings, the actor. We currently serve students from 18 months through Eighth Grade.
In 1954, Bobby Troop, an actor and songwriter, wrote the Pinecrest song. This song continues to be sung today by our current Pinecrest students.
In 1957, the second Pinecrest campus was opened on Devonshire Street in Northridge. It was originally the Lasalle Jam and Jellies Farm. Recognizing the opportunity for students to be creative, think clearly, and increase the desire for students to learn more, the new school prospered.
1961, the third campus was opened in Woodland Hills. Mrs. Dye purchased this property from Hertz Rental Cars. This campus began as a small ranch school and has developed into a site serving students 18 months through Eighth Grade.
In the 1960?s, campuses in Panorama City, Tarzana, and Sherman Oaks were operated by Pinecrest. Since then, these properties were sold in order to expand in some of the upcoming communities developed in the early 1970?s.
From 1975 through 1977, the Valencia, Thousand Oaks, and Simi Valley campuses were built. Mrs. Dye had a vision for private schools in these new and growing communities. Today, the Valencia campus serves students 18 months through Sixth Grade, Thousand Oaks now has students through Seventh Grade, with Simi Valley going through Eighth Grade. In 2003, our Thousand Oaks campus received the National Blue Ribbon School Award for begin a nationally recognized distinguished school In 2006 and 2007, Valencia and Simi were nominees for this award.
In 1985, the seventh school was opened in Northridge on White Oak and Roscoe Boulevards. The need for solid educational programs grew; indicating another campus in Northridge would be warranted.
In 1990 and 1991, Pinecrest met the need of the whirlwind expansion in Santa Clarita and Antelope Valleys, by building schools in Canyon Country, Lancaster, and Palmdale. Reaching out to these newer communities was a goal achieved, and providing excellence in education was a continued commitment of Pinecrest Schools.
In 2000, the Moorpark campus was opened in Ventura County. Again, through teamwork, this beautiful school with contemporary design was introduced to this community of young families.
In 2009, the Pinecrest Schools serves over 6,000 students along with their families. The Pinecrest Schools are fully accredited through the National Independent Private School Association (NIPSA) through 2012.
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Don L. Dye
August 16, 1932 — July 1, 2006
Together, with his brothers and his parents, Founders, George Will Dye and Edna Mae Dye, Don L. Dye created the largest family held co-educational school system in the United States. He was born in Iowa and moved to North Hollywood, California in 1935. He attended North Hollywood High School, Los Angeles Valley College, and then UCLA. He served in the United States Army, married Bobbi, his wife of 49 years, and had two children, Jeri and Donnelle. Over the years, he and Bobbi served on various philanthropic boards in the San Fernando Valley, and more recently, he was a Captain in the reserves for the El Monte Police Department.
Over the span of five decades, Don, and his brothers, Robert and Philip opened and operated fourteen private schools in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. Pinecrest Schools now serves Southern California families throughout ten campuses and 33 programs. Mr. Dye was very proud that the schools were accredited through the National Independent Private School Association, and that the Thousand Oaks campus became a 2003 No Child Left Behind Blue Ribbon School recipient.
Mr. Dye worked in his Sherman Oaks office up until the day he passed away. His love for family was deep, and his idea of "vacation" was spending time at home with his wife, daughters, grandsons, and granddaughter. He rarely left Pinecrest for more than a few days. He enjoyed driving around to the schools, visiting the children, walking the grounds, and continually desiring to build more campuses. He loved Starbucks coffee, Jazz Music, the Civil War stories, Intellectual Debates, Hollywood Trivia, Western Art, and Golden Retrievers.
He will be greatly missed by those in many different sectors of his community. His vibrant personality and generous spirit will be remembered by all of us. A Memorial Service was held on July 29, 2006 at Forest Lawn — Hollywood Hills.
He is survived by his wife Bobbi, daughters and sons-in-laws, Jeri Dye Lynch, Mark Lynch, Donnelle Dye Juelsson and Staffan Juelsson, grandsons, Conor, Riley and Parker Lynch, and Gunnar Juelsson, along with granddaughter, Greta Juelsson, and his nephew Sean Dye.
Source: Pinecrest Schools.