Jeff Sindler, Head of School
Jeff has served as Head of School at Burgundy since 2006. Before coming to Burgundy, Jeff served as Headmaster for 10 years of Baltimore’s St. Ignatius Loyola Academy, a innovative tuition-free and year-round middle school for boys from low-income backgrounds that provided a holistic, pre-college prep education.
Following graduation from Duke University, where he played varsity lacrosse and earned ACC Academic Honor Roll distinction, Jeff served as Alumni director, English teacher, coach, and dorm parent at his alma mater, McDonogh School (Baltimore), before serving as teacher, coach and Chief Sophomore Advisor at the Kinkaid School (Houston), where he coached a state championship and nationally ranked lacrosse team. Between, he also taught and coached for a year in the Baltimore City Public Schools.
Jeff earned a master’s degree from Middlebury College’s Bread Loaf School of English, where he was a Beth Cubeta Scholar. He has taken coursework with the Johns Hopkins program for Educational Leadership in Independent Schools, as well as independent school leadership workshops with NAIS (National Association of Independent Schools) and ISM (Independent School Management). Jeff was a founding board member of the Washington DC SEED Public Charter Boarding School, currently serves on the board of the Lowell School (a progressive school in Washington, DC), is vice president of the board of Northern Virginia's Emerging Scholars, a successful local program modeled after Upward Bound, and has consulted with several start-up schools that serve urban and at-risk students.
Jeff’s educational philosophy is grounded in the social, emotional, and spiritual wellness of children. He believes that children whose basic needs of acceptance, respect and belonging are met will be apt and enthusiastic learners. Jeff honors the individual needs of each learner and focuses on meeting students where they are socially and academically, building on their previous learning and life experiences. A great advocate of hands-on and project-based learning, Jeff sees Burgundy as a leader in progressive education and environmental science, as well as a model for the values of respect for diversity and collaboration.
Jeff and his wife, Tee, their daughters Tonasia (Burgundy ’07, Flint Hill '11, Emerson College '15) and Tatum (Burgundy ’24), and their dog Cameron live near Springfield. Jeff has two adult sons, Ed and David, who are both currently serving in the U.S. Army. An Outward Bound alumnus and outdoor enthusiast, Jeff’s other interests include reading, creative writing, cycling and canoeing. He is researching and writing, when he has time, a cycle of historical short stories focusing on race in America.