We are a private, PreK-12 school committed to advancing creativity, innovation, and the development of lifelong learners and leaders.

Inquiry-Based Learning

Our interdisciplinary curriculum is driven by student interests and inquiries.

The City is Our Classroom

Our campus is located in Chicago’s West Town neighborhood.

Progressive Education

Our students “learn by doing” in a truly hands-on environment.

Connect With Us.

Fill out the form below if you’d like to register for an Open House or Admissions Coffee & Tour, schedule a call with admissions, or simply learn more about Bennett Day School.


PreK-12 Private School

Competency-Based Assessment

Your student is more than a grade or test score. Our individualized assessment model moves away from the standard ‘A’ through ‘F’ grading scale to provide each learner with specific feedback based on their strengths and areas of challenge.

Responsive Advisory

Middle Schoolers start and end each day with Advisory as a way to set goals, establish a predictable routine, and build a framework for meaningful connections with peers and teachers. During Advisory, students work in small group settings structured around specific learning goals, assignments, and projects.

Project-Based Learning

Our Project-Based Learning environment not only emphasizes subject-based skills but also gives learners the opportunity to apply them across disciplines in a manner that mimics the skills necessary to be an effective citizen of the world.

After-School Programming

The goal of After-School programming for Middle School is to provide dynamic enrichment, extension, and introductory experiences for students that reflect an increased demand on attention and autonomy for the group. Clubs are developed based on student interest and leadership.

"My son is encouraged to exercise his curiosity, embrace his unique strengths, and develop new talents. He feels happy and secure. It’s been a game changer for him and for my family."

-Current Parent


What Makes Us Different?


Scaffolded Autonomy

Students in our Middle School are given room to “fail.” We know it’s crucial that they feel comfortable taking risks and are given the space to learn and grow through their mistakes.


Digital Portfolio

Every student has a Digital Portfolio of their work that displays their performance and learning far beyond traditional letter grades and test scores.


School Starts at 8:30 AM

In our Middle School, school starts at 8:30 am. Research shows that a later start time more closely aligns with the adolescent “biological clock” and can boost academic performance.


Professional Development

Every Bennett Day teacher spends 300 hours on professional development and cross-subject collaboration each year.


Social-Emotional Learning

We believe that social-emotional learning (SEL) is as important as academic learning. Through SEL, students learn social and self-awareness, relationship-building, and decision-making skills.


We Are Bennett Day.

About US

Our Story

Co-founder and CEO, Cameron Smith, was inspired to create Bennett Day School after the birth of his first son. As new parents, he and his wife, Erica, recognized that there were few options for progressive, independent schooling in Chicago. While reflecting on his own education, Cameron thought of his time in business school at Kellogg, where the process of learning was about creative problem solving, project-based inquiry, collaboration, and teamwork. Determined to build a school that mirrors this learning experience for children, Cameron began researching forward-thinking PreK-12 educational approaches. In this exploration, he gravitated toward the Reggio Emilia philosophy developed in Italy, which emphasizes key life skills like inquiry, innovation, teamwork, resilience, perseverance, and critical thinking.

Through bold action, thoughtful leadership, community support, and commitment to the vision, Bennett Day School opened its doors in 2014 with 23 kindergartners. Just 7 years later, we have 270 students in preschool through 12th grade, and this is just the beginning. We hope you’ll join our community and be part of the incredible story we’re writing.