Crystal DavisAssistant Head of School – Student Life; English, ESL
For Crystal, wandering the Ojai foothills as a child beside the long stride of her father and splashing through San Antonio Creek on horseback fed her impulse to explore, contemplate, and write. Just as likely to be found in geology, poetry, or philosophy in college, this mix still motivates her personally and inspires her most fulfilling teaching moments. Earning a degree in literature, she followed graduation with a tour as poet/teacher for the publicly funded California Poets in the Schools.
At Ojai Valley School, she has spent 29 years in the English and social studies departments teaching all levels of English and developing and implementing the humanities curriculum. Crystal acted as head of the girls dormitory and resident counselor for seven years, and in her tenure has assumed many coaching tasks, most notably the swim conditioning program.
Drawn to the rich possibilities of combining diverse academic disciplines, adventure, and personal growth within experiential education, Crystal stepped into Outdoor Education full-time between 2006 and 2011, articulating a curriculum for the program and leading an average of sixteen expeditions between September and May of each year. In the summer of 2008 she developed and directed the Ojai Valley School Environmental Studies Camp. In 2013, Crystal stepped away from her administrative role with Outdoor Education and returned to the classroom full time, teaching AP English Literature, English 10 Honors, and ESL classes.
She scaled back her teaching duties and stepped into a new role in 2017 as Assistant Head of School for Student Life.
Outside OVS, Crystal continues to read widely in natural history, ancient history, and biography as well as fiction and, her first love and vocation, poetry. She has worked as a leader and supervisor for Concerned Resource Environmental Workers (CREW), volunteered as a hike leader for the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy, and participated in biological and botanic field surveys with the USFS. She has also served as committee member and featured local poet for the Ojai Poetry Festival. She still loves wandering the hills, and closer to home she relishes vegetable gardening and spending time with her son, Shaun, an alumnae of both the Lower and Upper campuses, and her two beautiful grandchildren.