It is a tremendous privilege to have been selected as the Head of Sevenoaks School. The Sevenoaks education is unique: global in its outlook, yet also rooted in the local community, committed to service and partnership.
Mr Jesse R Elzinga joined Sevenoaks School as Headmaster in September 2020. He was previously Headmaster of Reading Blue Coat School in Berkshire, which he joined in 2016. During his tenure the school enjoyed the best academic results in its history. Jesse expanded the school’s innovative Outreach and Partnership Programme, created a strong network of charities and partner schools within the local community, and established a thriving Development Office.
Before this, Jesse was Director of Studies at Harrow, where he broadened the school’s academic curriculum. Previously, he worked at St Edward’s School in Oxford as Director of Studies and as IB Coordinator. He helped introduce the IB Diploma at St Edward’s and was a residential Assistant Housemaster. He started his career at Whitgift School as a teacher of Theology and Philosophy, the Assistant Head of Sixth Form and the Theory of Knowledge Coordinator.
He studied at Harvard University, where he gained a BA Honours cum laude in Comparative Religion and Philosophy, and at Oxford University, where his MSt focused on ethical philosophy.
Jesse was a three-time national champion rower at Harvard and Oxford, and then became a competitive cyclist, twice racing against Sir Bradley Wiggins at the British Time Trial Championships (although Jesse is keen to point out that Sir Bradley won, by a significant margin, on both occasions!). Jesse is also an Ironman triathlete and marathoner, and since moving to Sevenoaks, he can be spotted in the early morning running in Knole Park. Jesse’s wife, Elaina Elzinga, works in the investments team at the Wellcome Trust. Jesse and Elaina enjoy cooking, BBQing, travelling and they are Friends of the Royal Opera House and supporting members of England Rugby Club. They have three daughters and live in Sevenoaks close to the school.