Message From the Board
It’s been awhile since I’ve written a board update and I apologize. We’ve been meeting still once—even twice—a week and, like a big knot, it does feel like finally things are beginning to untangle a bit. We are well aware of all those euphemisms: Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water” and “Don’t need to reinvent the wheel,” and we are trying go beyond just saying these things to figure out how to enact them while so much work is also being done on a day-to-day basis.
We are excited to report that our hiring has been going well. As everyone knows, we’ve had a lot of positions to fill. The Human Resources Committee of the College of Teachers and the Human Resources Committee of the Board have been working overtime to find and attract truly great members of our team. As a group, we’ve also been working hard to make our school as a workplace an equitable and just place. We are bringing in some help over the summer to get our policies, strategies, and compensation to reflect this. There have been some great hires made for next year. There have also been losses and we are particularly sorry for those few teachers that we weren’t able to retain because we haven’t figured out our hiring practices or finances fully yet. There is an email about to go out with a huge list of amazing new hires… so look for that!
Fundraising is part of any healthy Waldorf school and we’ve been pretty behind in fundraising over the last couple of years. At this point, part of the problem is that we’ve not done a great job of responding to community enthusiasm. If there is energy to pursue particular projects and their funds, we’d like to get better in supporting that.
We are kicking off our first online Fundraising Campaign ever, right now. Yes, we know it isn’t perfect timing with everyone jetting off for some much needed summer holiday time. Yet, we also know that we won’t raise anything if we don’t ask our community for the funds that we need. It’s our biggest fundraising campaign yet, $100,000 to replace the roof and get our school solar panel ready. Walter came in to give the history of our school as he knows it, the other day and he said the roof was leaking even 15 years ago. It’s time to change that. Our kids deserve not only the best education, but to be in classrooms that are safe, healthy, and dry. As soon as word got out that we would be fundraising for a new roof, interested parents started coming forward with possibilities of solar panels and other green initiatives. So many, that there will be a Green Team getting started this fall as well. (The first meeting is already on the calendar). Please stop by and check out our Raise the Roof Campaign. No more Band-Aid solutions. We are building a school worthy of our children! To learn more about the fundraising campaign or to donate send a message firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.dana.io/raisetheroof. (available on June 13)
We have continued to look into the alternatives to selling our house(s) and we’ve gotten a number of interests communicated to us from within our extended community. We have put together our “ask” for interested parties. Please read more here… if you are interested.
It’s been amazing to see how much fun is happening. With Outdoor Week—with parents included —and our first annual All Community Potluck. It’s just the beginning. I’ve been hearing all sorts of exciting plans for next year. And we are helping to form an Elder Council—a group of people (they don’t have to be old, an alumni of any sort—parent, student, faculty, or anthroposophical leader—are welcome) that will help hold the big vision of the school, collect histories, and otherwise help love our community. I see it like giving our school some grandparents. The first meeting will be mid-July and if anyone is interested please have them reach out to me (email@example.com) or Lorna Fortin (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Don’t forget that there are a number of social media sites started by parents from the school where you can post summer activities and get to see or meet new members of your community.
I’ll send you a few updates over the summer too, but for now: Enjoy! (And please don’t forget to check out the Raise the Roof campaign.
Manda Aufochs Gillespie
on behalf of the VWS Board of Trustees