in Memoir by

How does a young, idealistic man from a privileged background become the headmaster of a private school dedicated to providing opportunity to students from all backgrounds, and from there dedicate his entire life to progressive education?  In “Confessions of a Headmaster,” Dr. Paul F Cummins tells the story behind the founding of Crossroads in Los Angeles, New Roads School and many others.  Crossroads alumni Amy Pascal, former co-chair of Sony Pictures, calls Crossroads “the first school that understood that poetry, music and backpacking are as important as are mathematics and science…. Crossroads changed my life.”

Cummins’ previous books include “Two Americas, Two Educations,” and “Dachau Song: The Twentieth Century Odyssey of Herbert Zipper.

One more note – Paul Cummins is still opening schools, focusing on areas where kids’ educational opportunities are limited.  Check out his web site below for information about how you can help.

How do you start a school? Some of the “confessions” are some of the early challenges, problems and crises I encountered in launching my first school, Crossroads.

Paul Cummins

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

attributed to Mark Twain


Monica Hadley is co-founder, host and producer of Writers' Voices on KRUU 100.1 fm in Fairfield, Iowa, a community low power radio station, and webmaster at

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