News from Brookstone

Brookstone Schools Names John Murray Head of School

Charlotte, NC – Brookstone Schools, a private Classical Christian school educating underserved K-8th students in Charlotte, NC, announced it has named John Murray as its new Head of School. Mr. Murray currently serves as the President of Imago Dei Leadership Forum in St. Louis, Missouri. He starts his new role on July 1, 2020, succeeding Steve Hall.

Upon accepting the position, John said, “It is with great excitement I accept the Board of Directors’ call to serve as Brookstone’s next Head of School. Viewing each student as a unique image-bearer of God, the School seeks to fulfill its mission to glorify God by equipping underserved students academically, socially, and spiritually for future lives of leadership and service. It is for these reasons and more that I look forward to joining Brookstone’s Christ-centered, academically challenging community—influencing student leaders to affirm their identity and faith in Jesus and learn the importance of loving others as image-bearers of God.”

Libby Kelligrew, Brookstone’s Board Chair, endorsed John, stating: John is a Christ-centered visionary leader who is passionate about children and committed to the ideals and principles that Brookstone embodies. He values cultural competency and respects differences. We are confident in his leadership and ability to lead Brookstone to the next level in growth, academics and glorifying God. Brookstone is truly blessed to have John as its next Head of School.”

Brookstone Overview:

Brookstone, a K-8 Classical Christian School, housed in First Baptist Church on Davidson St., currently serves 185 students from Charlotte’s underserved neighborhoods. They are known for their exceptional levels of academic success. The current 3rd grade reading level proficiency is at 91%. (For perspective, the public school 3rd grade level of reading proficiency is at 39% and their underserved population scores are at 29%).

It has been noted by observers that, “Brookstone’s board, administration, faculty and families have built a remarkable educational institution. The school turns dreams into reality as it shapes the characters and nurtures the souls of God’s precious children. It’s 20-year commitment to academic excellence is inspiring in this city.”

About John Murray

John has 25 years’ experience in the education profession, 17 of which were as Head of School (Central Christian, St. Louis, MO; Fourth Presbyterian School, Potomac, MD; Santa Fe Christian Schools, Solana Beach, CA; and Saint David’s School, Raleigh, NC). In his Head of School roles, he has been responsible for a range of leadership, operational, academic and development duties.

John has extensive experience in impacting the broader community through film-making, writing and speaking. His 8th grade course, In Whose Image?, powerfully speaks into the lives of young men and woman and has served as a thought-provoking curriculum for the Imago Dei Leadership Forum. John’s documentary, Think About It: Understanding the Impact of TV-Movie Violence, was nationally distributed for more than a decade by numerous organizations (including Focus on the Family and Active Parenting). His articles addressing education, history, politics, media, and youth culture have appeared in numerous publications, including The Wall Street Journal and USA Today.

John earned his Bachelor of Arts from Vanderbilt University and his Master’s degree from Dartmouth College. He and his wife Barbara have four children.



Needed funds would provide additional programs and classrooms at inner-city school for economically disadvantaged students

Charlotte, N.C., Dec. 8, 2016 – Brookstone Schools is pleased to announce it is the recipient of a major challenge grant from the prestigious Leon Levine Foundation in Charlotte. The philanthropic foundation has pledged $150,000 in matching funds to Brookstone Schools for the expansion of programming and classrooms for the 2017-2018 school year. Gifts from new donors and increased giving from current supporters will be matched dollar for dollar until May 31, 2017.

“We are honored to partner with The Leon Levine Foundation to provide a life-changing, holistic education for at-risk children,” said Steve Hall, Brookstone Schools Head of School. “Through this gift, more students in Charlotte will receive a quality education and strong moral foundation that will lead to future lives of leadership and service.”

The grant represents an exceptional gift to Brookstone Schools, a non-profit, Christ-centered school serving disadvantaged urban youth in Uptown Charlotte. Brookstone serves 155 students in grades K-8. Eighty-seven percent of students qualify for reduced or free lunch. Parents pay a small, affordable portion of tuition, leaving Brookstone to raise more than 90 percent of its operating costs from outside sources.

The mission provides an accelerated, comprehensive educational program that is gaining recognition for its success. The spring 2016 standardized test scores indicate that Brookstone students are performing at the 74thpercentile compared to similar low-socioeconomic students across the nation. Teachers emphasize character formation along with academic excellence, aiming to shape future leaders for local communities.

Individuals and corporations interested in contributing to the matching grant may do so by making an online donation at, mailing a check payable to Brookstone Schools (P.O. Box 667890, Charlotte, N.C. 28266), or by calling the advancement office at (704) 392-6330.


About Brookstone Schools

Brookstone Schools is a non-profit Christ-centered school serving inner-city children and families since 2001. Brookstone offers an opportunity for parents who want a choice in how they educate their children but are unable to afford a private education. Our students learn not only facts, but how to use this knowledge in all aspects of their lives.

Brookstone Schools is located in Uptown Charlotte (301 South Davidson St., Charlotte, N.C. 28202). All gifts made to Brookstone Schools are tax deductible. For more information, please visit


Star Crawford
(704) 392-6330

WTVI, the local PBS affiliate, was here near the end of 2015 to do a story on Brookstone. Head of School Steve Hall shares his excitement and gratitude in saying,

“I am thankful to have such a professional service being provided for us, both the quality video and the marketing to the community… And though they chose one story, it represents for me all the miraculous work that goes on here every day by all of you. Thank you for your passion, commitment and love for the Brookstone family. To God be the glory.”

Carolina Impact (WTVI) Visits Brookstone Schools