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community

r e po rt

2017-2018


table of contents From Our Board of Trustees

3

From Our Head of School

4

Program Overviews 6 • Early Childhood Community

7

• Elementary Community

10

• Junior High Community

14

• Harwood Art Center Community

16

Professional Development Investments

22

50th Anniversary Celebration

26

A Century of Learning

30

The Campus Master Plan

32

The Seed Fund

34

The Outdoor Fund

36

New Funds & Campaigns

38

Financial Summaries & Operating Budget

40

Our People

42


FROM OUR BOARD of trustees Greetings to the Escuela del Sol Community: As a long time member of the Escuela del Sol family, I am thrilled to welcome you to this reflection on last year’s milestone celebration of our fiftieth anniversary — and all it represents as we set sight on a century of service to lifelong learning. During my many years in the Escuela community, our organization has developed from a preschool on a very small campus to our current location, which now includes toddler, primary, elementary and junior high, as well as rich public programs through our Harwood Art Center. The Escuela community is defined by its warmth and cohesion, as well as its capacity over its five decades, to welcome new students and families to the community, all while sustaining relationships with our wonderful alumnae. Escuela has continued to mature in every way. The school is a faithful member and an active participant in Albuquerque’s ever-growing possibilities — true to our roots in the teachings of Maria Montessori, while expanding Escuela’s role in the larger communities of New Mexico. On behalf of the Escuela del Sol Board of Trustees, thank you for being part of our first fifty years and here’s to nurturing the next fifty, Maria Garcia Geer Chair, Board of Trustees


FROM OUR executive director & head of school Dearest Community, In 1968, a Montessori teacher in concert with a group of parents, created a place for their young children; a place where they could make friends and soak in everything they were ready to learn from each other and from their environment. Volunteering their time and working together, these parents started a program that has since served thousands of children and families. Since that time, much has changed in the world, with many schools bowing to the pressures and fears of a society that wants creativity and individuality but demands conformity and creates standardized performance evaluations. While not much has changed in the educational landscape since the early 50’s, Escuela’s 50th anniversary gave us much to celebrate as we continue to spearhead an unwavering effort to improve and nurture an environment that will change the lives of students and families as our alumni become the movers and shakers who create a better future. This Community Report provides us an opportunity to reflect on our organization, the work we have been doing for the past few years, and our path for the future; it gives us a way to provide our community with important information and updates as well as a chance to tout our accomplishments, engage the community in the organization’s goals, look back with a grateful eye and look ahead as we strengthen relationships and community ties to forward the mission of our great organization. Escuela emerged out of a recognition that the educational status quo is inadequate to address the depth of possibilities children are born with, and an understanding that memorizing the ABCs will not prepare anyone for a meaningful future. The creation of the Harwood (in 1991) as a robust way to build opportunities for friendships, service and collaboration with the larger community is a good indicator of the “no boundaries” approach to an education for life. By creating the Harwood Art Center, Escuela del Sol offers a community full of rich opportunities for the brain, the body and the heart to people of all ages.


“to educate is not to isolate but to embrace” The very fact of our “two-part” story illuminates our mission: To inspire a passion for lifelong learning. To educate is not to isolate but to embrace. We nurture creative and critical thinking, mindful relationships, and the understanding and ability to exercise freedom of choice with responsibility for self and others. The recent years have been productive, thanks to the input of our school and Harwood community, thanks to the support of our funders and volunteers, and thanks to the guidance of our leadership and mentors. Our organization continues to be driven by the mission, which informs the targeted, timely and relevant goals that arise out of need and strategic planning. I am fortunate to have been at the helm of this wonderful organization for over three decades; it was and continues to be a life of opportunities. It has always been a team effort, and as we grow so has the team — and so have the needs of the community we serve. I see significant changes ahead, changes born of wonderful opportunities, changes that will need the guidance and the hands of many. My work now is to engage the will and the wisdom of a new and growing team, one that consists not only of employees of Escuela and Harwood, but also of a vibrant hardworking corps of volunteers. This report provides insights and understanding and perhaps motivation for you to get more involved. If you are interested in the opportunity of a lifetime, or if you have any questions about the year ahead, please give me a call!

Friedje vanGils Executive Director & Head of School (505) 242-3033, friedje@edelsol.org


Program overviews 2017-18 By nurturing academic skills, creative thinking, collaboration and self-direction, Escuela del Sol guides students on their learning journey. In an interactive, supportive environment children develop the skills they need for a meaningful, happy and successful future. Our early childhood, elementary and junior high programs engage students eighteen months through ninth grade and their families, and we serve greater New Mexico communities through the public programs of our Harwood Art Center. The following pages offer program overviews, goals and news. For more information, please visit our brand new websites at escueladelsol.org and harwoodartcenter.org, or contact us directly!


early childhood community eighteen months - six years old

The Toddler Community is a young child’s introduction to the larger world. Here, and in the Primary classrooms where they take their next steps, children are nurtured in environments perfectly designed for the early childhood years. During this period of amazing neurological and physical development, children need a place where the development of social skills, sensory exploration, independence and self-expression are nurtured in an unhurried atmosphere of love and respect. Classroom & Curriculum Dr. Maria Montessori developed a graduated, detailed curriculum based on years of observation and research. Unlike conventional programs, children move through the curriculum according to their own unique path of development so that no child ever finds the work too challenging or too simple. The classroom is a place of respect. Everything is child-sized, from the tables and chairs to the vases, plates and utensils, even (and especially) the toilets. In each classroom community children work and learn together in a beautiful setting where curiosity is fostered and independent learning is supported. Dedicated and trained teachers design and guide activities to develop social, emotional and motor skills. In addition to developing a solid foundation for future academics, great attention is given to helping children learn to become emotionally literate, socially responsible problem-solvers capable of caring for themselves and the world around them. Goals & News The Master Plan, developed over the last three years, calls for an expansion of the early childhood programs at Escuela to include an infant program while expanding the environment to accommodate more toddlers. Dr. Montessori referred to the infant environment as “Il Nido,” the nest for young children; we will start with children from 12 weeks of age in a space especially designed for infants and toddlers, with teachers trained in the “Assistance to Infancy” Montessori program. The Infant and Toddler community will move to the current Primary building, which will be re-designed to meet their needs. In the meantime, the school continues to refresh and renew classroom materials and furniture. Last year we invited a consultant (a trainer of Montessori teachers) to spend some time in our toddler rooms; her feedback and suggestions resulted in some furniture changes and re-arrangements to help strengthen the best practices of our teachers and their assistants. From the recently re-tiled bathrooms and new custommade furniture, to the renovated climbing structures, additional playground activities and continued love to the grounds, current students will continue to be engaged as we make a slow and careful transition to larger programs and new spaces. Always supporting our teachers growth and lifelong learning, Escuela was able to send Ms. Monica to the AMS National Conferences in San Diego, and Ms. Shaina and Ms. Emily attended the AMI Refresher Course in Phoenix. Our longtime Program Director for Early Childhood and teacher in the Blue Room, Ms. Dana, is now working fulltime as program / teacher support. We congratulate Ms. Aliyah (who already holds an elementary teaching certificate) on the completion of her Montessori primary certificate, and we welcome Ms. Joslynn to the primary team. The school continues to provide, support and sponsor on-going professional development via local in-services, workshops and conferences.


it’s our nature to nurture


once a student, al ways a student


elementary community grades one - six

At Escuela del Sol Elementary, fundamental skills are integrated in an interdisciplinary program to nurture creativity and enthusiasm for learning while fostering critical thinking and social responsibility. Learning in an environment of kindness, courtesy, self-respect and consideration for others is crucial to moral development, sense of dignity and academic success. Classroom & Curriculum Escuela’s Elementary program harnesses the developmental hunger for information by throwing open the doors to the whole of human knowledge: the history of ancient civilizations, the mechanics of language, biological and geological classification, the intricacies of physical and political geography, the methods of mathematics from basic operations through cube roots and basic algebra. During the elementary years children are in a sensitive period for moral reasoning. This is a crucial time to integrate character development, mediation and conflict resolution skills. Each Elementary class holds regular meetings, not only as opportunities to share work and research but also as a chance to work out social problems in a fair and reasonable fashion. Teachers act as moderators and facilitators, helping students learn how to negotiate solutions that respect everyone’s thoughts and feelings to maintain a smoothly functioning classroom community – and develop real-world skills of compromise and diplomacy that will serve them well for years to come. Classrooms are designed to support group and individual learning, and are equipped with a rich array of materials that stimulate intellectual curiosity and passion. Goals & News Escuela Elementary started the 2017-18 school year with a new teaching assistant, Ms. Madeline; she’s been a wonderful addition to the program! Sponsored by Escuela, Mr. Ben began the process of training for his elementary certification in the summer of 2017, and Ms. Sharayah began hers in the summer of 2018. We should point out that for all teachers in or just starting training: It’s a long, intense and difficult process. Well worth the time and money as the content is often a life-transforming experience, but wow… it is a BIG COMMITMENT! Escuela del Sol is committed to supporting our teachers as much as possible in all these efforts to expand, hone and improve their work with children.


the prepared environment


junior high community grades seven - nine

Escuela del Sol for 7th through 9th graders is an experiential learning community set in a rich urban environment designed to cultivate independence, creativity, and confidence to prepare for high school and beyond. We reach out from our campus at 7th & Mountain NW to learn with community experts, build on community partnerships, and help students realize their own integral and valuable place in their community. Classroom & Curriculum The Jr. High program offers a challenging academic curriculum that connects learning across math, science, humanities, and language arts and is grounded in learning by doing. Through onsite urban farming, place-based research at local museums, studios, and businesses, and collaborations with artists, makers, and scientists, we foster in-depth learning. The Jr. High program cultivates young citizens who have a broad world-view, an exceptional academic foundation, a lifelong passion for learning, and a commitment to community. Our students are responsible, ethical, considerate, active, and self-directed young adults. Goals & News In the fall of 2016, on schedule and after years of program planning and fundraising, Escuela del Sol opened our Jr. High program in a remodled building on the East side of our 7th & Mountain Campus. Guided by lead educator and founding program director, Tanesia Hale-Jones, our Jr. High students, parents, mentors and supporters have bloomed an urban farm, a business, a band and much more. The first years of Jr. High have exceeded our expectations, made us very proud of our students, and further illustrated the vision of Ms. Tanesia. Starting a program is no small undertaking. The school’s Board and Administrative Team, our parents’ and community’s contributions to The Seed Fund, and the great work done by our Master Plan architects and our staff Maintenance Team gave the program a huge boost. But friends, we could not have made this dream a reality without the steady dedication, time and talent of Ms. Tanesia. In addition to receiving her Montessori adolescent certificate, developing the curriculum, creating the classroom (indoors and out), cultivating a network of program collaborators and student mentors, she practically lives with a group of 8 – 9 adolescents, giving them her all each and every day, and engaging them to continue shaping and growing the Jr. High. We don’t have the room on these pages to communicate all of the amazing growth of this program or of all the opportunities our Jr. High students participate in. Please visit escueladelsol.com for more information and follow the Jr. High on social media for illustrations of the program’s magic.


learn to live, live to learn


creativity is the seed of change


the harwood community all ages, backgrounds, perspectives, incomes & identities

Harwood, the public outreach program of Escuela del Sol Montessori, is a creative center for community. Participating at a grassroots level, Harwood deploys the arts as a catalyst for personal empowerment, cultural enrichment and social change. We believe that equitable access to the arts and opportunities for creative expression are integral to inspired, passionate individuals and to healthy, vibrant communities. Our programs include arts education, engagement and community outreach initiatives for all ages, as well as resident studio, apprenticeship, teaching and professional development opportunities for artists. Events, workshops and classes take place in our main building at the corner of 7th & Mountain, at our 6th Street Studio, and at many varied locations around the neighborhood, city and state. Harwood’s work blooms from the seeds of our shared humanity. Art is a powerful means for holistic engagement, and we wield it toward integration, visibility, empathy and unity. The arts imbue individuals and New Mexico with a unique sense of place, shared identity, cultural wealth, and vast potential for development. Across our efforts, we center communities who are marginalized by biases toward status, identity and location by shaping our programs with and for our broad and diverse community/ies. Program Portfolio 2017-18 For 28 years, Escuela’s Harwood Art Center has expanded our model of intergenerational, multicultural, creative and inspired learning in service to New Mexico. Harwood’s work is rooted in building multi-faceted, long-term relationships. Our core offerings include: creative roots outreach programs offer free, year-round arts education and exhibition opportunities to youth across the city in partnership with an extensive network of nonprofit, public and private partners. galleries & exhibitions program provides resident, emerging and established artists from New Mexico with opportunities for comprehensive professional development, awards, commissions and exhibitions. artist studios program hosts resident artists in 39 studios, at subsidized rates, in our historic 36,000 square-foot public community center at the intersection of Downtown, Wells Park and Saw Mill. art school, art and sol & art camp programs offer fee-based, multidisciplinary arts education to youth and adults, with scholarships available thanks to our dedicated funders. community engagement programs invite the public to join us in free collaborative projects and installations, open artist studios, monthly exhibitions, quarterly community capstone celebrations, and consortia-organized initiatives.


Goals & News Last year, through Harwood’s programs: 112 K-8 students gained confidence, teamwork, time/project management, and greater sense of their own agency through hands-on, student-led learning in free, year-round Creative Roots; 8 high school students were hired to and mentored through the design of public artwork that addresses social and economic justice issues in Albuquerque; 300+ artists were supported with exhibitions, sales, marketing, professional development, cash awards and audience-building; 41 teaching & commission artists were hired to develop projects, lead programs, create sitespecific artworks, and shape exhibitions for youth and adults; 45 resident artists received subsidized rent rates and maintained 100% of sales conducted out of their studios; 6 core program staff were salaried with benefits, in roles of dedication and purpose; 11,000+ new mexicans participated free art making projects, open artist studios, public dedications, events and celebrations. Across these initiatives, we continued to hone mission-fulfilling services, refine our programs, and expand our circles of participants and partners. Notably, after two years of development, we launched our Apprenticeship for Arts & Social Justice in the summer of 2018. Teens are paid a living wage to design public art that addresses issues of social justice, with mentorship from professional artists, architects and engineers. Our team studied input from a community planning charrette held at Hayes Middle School and solicited feedback from the International District Healthy Communities Coalition. Apprentices also practiced daily meditation and received training including Visual Culture, Financial Literacy, Local History, and Anti-Oppressive Thought and Action. We have committed the next 4 years to creating a series of community-driven, apprentice-designed public artworks for Mesa Verde Park to increase public safety and pride of place. We have received contracts and lead funding from the City of Albuquerque Public Art Program and State of New Mexico Youth Conservation Corps in support of the program. As we look ahead, we are excited to pursue the vision laid out in our community-led 7th & Mountain Campus Master Plan. Built in 1925, our historic building requires maintenance and restoration on a continuous basis; centered in sustainability and public engagement, our current organizational plan calls for envelope and energy upgrades, universally accessible design, and improved engagement and event spaces. To explore our work further, to learn more about partners, programs and events, or to get involved, please visit our **brand new website** at harwoodartcenter.org


our roots run deep


professional development investing in our team of teachers and administrators

In addition to supporting the continued training of individual teachers and administrators, last year Escuela sent groups of faculty and staff to the American Montessori International and the American Montessori Association conferences, and of Harwood program staff to the Americans for the Arts National Convention.

total invested in professional development 2017-18: $ 3 1,4 16.52 American Montessori International Conference In February 2018, three days of AMI workshops and courses were held in Phoenix, AZ. This annual conference is designed to “refresh” teachers in their Montessori practice. The topic of 2018 was The Complete Classroom - Preparing the Intangible Environment. Of the experience, our Elementary Guide Inga Tomlinson wrote: “It was a wonderful experience to go with Shaina (Toddler Guide), Emily (Primary Guide), and Tanesia (Jr. High Guide) to the refresher course. We had three days to connect with each other, network with colleagues from across the country and participate in many inspiring workshops. We felt proud to represent Escuela and came together every night after our classes to share and apply what we learned to our Escuela community. The elementary workshop was taught by Jamie Rue. She is the elementary teacher trainer at the Washington Montessori Institute (WMI) in Columbia, MD. She is a wise and inspiring teacher. A big take-away for me was thinking about when Maria Montessori began her work. She did not use a checklist, she wanted to support children in their natural development. We need to approach the children in our classroom the way she did, what is this child’s behavior telling me, what does this child need? We call our classroom “the prepared environment”. We work diligently to prepare the room with specific learning materials and supplies. Preparing the “intangible environment” refers to how we carefully prepare each student to use the learning materials and be in community each other. We do this through freedom and responsibility. We support each child to develop independence in order to access freedom and responsibility.” Escuela del Sol sponsored the attendance of: Shaina Brinkman Tanesia Hale-Jones Emily Schuyler Inga Tomlinson


Americans for the Arts National Convention In June 2018, five days of AFTA workshops and courses were held in Denver, CO. For more than 50 years, AFTA has organized an annual convention for arts and community leaders to connect and discuss strategies for building stronger towns, counties, and cities through the arts. The 2018 Convention focused on core themes of Culture and Community; Equity and Engagement; Investment; Cross-Sector and Community Partnership; and Communicating Our Value. Thrillingly, AFTA provided National Convention Scholarship Awards to all four of the Harwood program staff who applied with individual statements of purpose and letters of recommendation from our Chief Programs Officer, Julia Mandeville, who wrote: “Each of these women is remarkable in her own right, in ways I’ve aimed to distinguish in her individual letter. Each is deeply deserving of and would magnify the experience gained through attending the Americans for the Arts Convention, including always and infinitely paying forward the support of a scholarship, were you to award. “But it also feels important to note, categorically, that: Dani Belvin, Jennifer DePaolo, Staci Drangmeister and GuruAmrit Khalsa Smith comprise a particular and pivotal foundation from which Harwood’s impact continues to multiply, above and beyond what’s been imagined throughout our Center’s 27-year history, and for the myriad benefits of our diverse program participants, collaborating and teaching artists, and community/ies at-large. “We are striving for **full** attendance at this year’s Convention in Denver – a particular location that offers us, based in Albuquerque, the potential of access as a team. It would be absolutely invaluable to attend together, to multiply our collective knowledge by fanning out across sessions, and to engage in this professional- and organizational-development endeavor as a work family.” Rounding out the AFTA scholarship awards ($2,765 total), Harwood sponsored the attendance of: Dani Belvin Jennifer DePaolo Staci Drangmeister GuruAmrit Khalsa Smith Julia Mandeville

total invested in AF TA: $2,953


professional development investing in our team of teachers and administrators

American Montessori Society Conference In March 2018, four days of AMS workshops and courses were held in Denver, CO. The theme of the conference “Montessori Inside and Out” was designed to enthuse educators and leaders to “dive deep to discover the truth that lies both inside and outside – in our own hearts and minds, in nature and the environment, and in the societies and communities we create.” Workshops that Escuela staff attended include: - Anti-Bias and Anti-Racist topics ranging from Diversity and Equity, Montessori for Social Justice, Indigenous Language Montessori Programs, Dismantling Racism through Anti-Bias Language, the Personal Work of Dismantling Inequity, and Supporting Children in Accepting Differences - Emotional Intelligence and Social and Emotional Learning - Power struggles with children and how to use Circle Time for building community - Leadership workshops that addressed Transformational Learning and Customer Service - Secondary Teacher Networking, Democracy in Secondary classrooms, and inclusion in Adolescent Programs - Orton-Gillingham Language workshops and Enriching the Language Area - Enriching Science through Engagement and Exploration Of the experience, our Primary Program Directress Dana McCabe wrote: “We were encouraged by Keynote speakers like Rick Steves, who inspired us to bring the world into our classrooms while encouraging travel; or Anna Deavere Smith who discussed the school to prison pipeline, highlighting that a positive school culture can be influential in how a young person experiences the world; or Dale Dougherty who urged us to bring maker spaces into our schools. We were gratefully supported by the Sol Mates with travel and hotel stay baskets and giftcards for Uber to get around Denver.” With the underwriting of Title II funds and Continuing Education funds, Escuela del Sol supported the attendance of: Lisa Alessio Shardae LeDouix Rhian Small Aliyah Qidwai Farooki Dana McCabe Friedje vanGils Tanesia Hale-Jones Lisa Pearl Gretchen Vogelsberg


professional development investing in the growth of our community

Ongoing & Collaborative Professional Development Initiatives Escuela del Sol cultivates the continued development and growing citizenship of our students, teachers, staff and administrators; of our organization; and of our community at-large. Across Escuela, and including all educational and public programs teams, we instituted internal Professional Development Partnerships amongst all faculty/staff to increase awareness, collaboration and understanding of all the various jobs our employees are engaged in as they work in support of our mission. In addition to workshops that take place during in-service days and attendance at local and national conferences, Escuela has invested in creating a school-wide community of reflective practice by implementing a Montessori Coaching Program. Experienced professionals specially trained as coaches support staff through observation, reflecting, collaborative planning, and goal setting for continual growth. This practice incorporates frequent classroom observation, using specific tools and rubrics and one-on-one as well as team meetings. Dana McCabe meets with Early Childhood teachers; Sarah Louderbough meets with Elementary and Junior High teachers; all staff meet weekly – in program levels or all together – to share, reflect, and problem solve collaboratively. Escuela is a founding school of the Montessori Network of New Mexico. Our Head of School, Friedje vanGils, sat on the Founding Board, and our Assistant Head of School, Elizabeth Marcilla is currently the acting Board President. Its purpose is to raise the standards of Montessori practice in New Mexico and to support legislative action to raise educational standards throughout the State. Working in collaboration with other schools, we estblished the Indigenous Montessori Institute and the New Mexico Montessori Teacher Training Center. The consortium brought several nationallyrenowned educators, teacher trainers and speakers for workshops, lectures and consultation.


50 times around the sun


the 50th anniversary a summer celebration of past & possibility

The following was written by Escuela staff members Elizabeth Marcilla and Julia Mandeville; it is adapted from a summer media release and publication in ABQ The Magazine.

Over a magical weekend in July, Escuela del Sol Montessori celebrated our 50th anniversary. Families of current and alumni students came together – from around Albuquerque and around the country – to revel in the spirit of community that characterizes the school, our growing legacies and our bright future. In her jubilant address during the festivities, head of school Friedje vanGils remarked, “Escuela del Sol is continuously built by educators, parents and collaborators committed to a shared vision: To create a perfect environment, a good place, and a wonderful world that nurtures the unfolding, the becoming, the blossoming of every individual’s possibility. This is the promise we make to our children, to each other and to our community every day.” As New Mexico’s oldest Montessori School, Escuela offers students aged 18 months through ninth grade an unparalleled, authentic educational experience – as evidenced by its distinction of being the first school in the state accredited with highest designation by the American Montessori Society. Escuela’s philosophy is based on the renowned work of Dr. Maria Montessori, who recognized that each child is unique and has different educational needs. The learning environment and materials she designed give children the opportunity to discover themselves and their worlds through concrete, hands-on activities that foster independence and confidence. Escuela’s programs cultivate the critical thinking skills necessary for success in the future and nurture the practical life skills of motivation, purpose, passion, organization, listening and conversation. This bedrock offers the best academic and social-emotional foundations in the Southwest. Originally a one-room schoolhouse in the University of New Mexico area, Escuela del Sol now activates an entire historic city block at 7th & Mountain in Downtown Albuquerque. Students from toddler to junior high are part of a vibrant, living learning lab, guided by a team of exceptional educators and experts.


“escuela is rooted in the power of people to create” The campus is also home to Escuela’s community outreach initiative, Harwood Art Center, established in 1991 and lovingly sustained since. Harwood magnifies the school’s values of life-long learning, creative expression and inspired citizenship by serving people of all ages, backgrounds and identities through its public programs. Reaching more than 10,000 individuals annually, Escuela’s Harwood Art Center offers arts education, projects and events across Albuquerque, as well as apprenticeship, teaching and leadership opportunities, exhibitions and commissions, and professional development programs to both emerging and established artists. From our humble beginnings in 1968, to our current role as an anchor point of holistic education and a facilitator of statewide engagement, Escuela remains committed to a vibrant future for the children and families of New Mexico. As Ms. vanGils reflected, “Escuela is rooted in the power of people to create, define and steward the places we wish to imagine, for ourselves and with care for those around us. That ethos has defined our organization for 50 years and remains in full view, every day.”

50 years: A film project exploring our roots and sewing our seeds

A celebration of 50 Years Around the Sun only happens... every 50 years! We knew we wanted to honor the occassion by capturing reflections from our ever-growing Escuela community. So our friends and collaborators at JAK Media documented the festivities, interviewed many of our attendees, and produced a short film to mark this important and joyous anniversary. We invite you to be among the very first to view the beautiful video at escueladelsol.org!


our future is blooming the first community-visioning exercise in our master planning process


a century of learning

building a community campus for current needs and future goals Looking towards our 50th anniversary and a century of service, Escuela del Sol and Harwood Art Center clarified a vision: We imagine blooming an entire block in the heart of our city, a community campus at 7th & Mountain, a place that people of all ages, backgrounds and identities engage as a home for learning. Montessori spoke of education as an aide to life; this will be a place that defines, embodies and fosters learning as a lifestyle. We know that it is possible to create centers of learning that recognize and utilize the wisdom and capabilities of our citizens, that integrate this treasure trove of creative intelligence, that form the curriculum and offer the opportunities for creative expression that students of all ages – particularly children – need and deserve. We will build one to serve as a model. We will leverage our strong organizational foundation and reputation for quality, stability, and possibility. We will remain an independent social profit organization, engaging broad support and stewarding our resources to achieve widespread impact. We will continue building access, working to ensure that the children and adults who desire it can participate in the programs offered. Our blueprint emerged through in-depth strategic planning efforts; over years of formal, facilitated dialogue and coordination (2012 - present), various community stakeholders have dedicated their energies to clarifying our aims and determining how we can best achieve them. So many have served in volunteer, philanthropic, and leadership roles; we are deeply grateful for their support. Throughout this multi-year process, we have engaged key mentors and guides, made important hires and organizational investments, prioritized our programmatic and capital goals, identified the anticipated structural and financial resources necessary to move forward, conducted projectspecific campaigns, completed a campus master planning process, opened the Jr. High program, and embarked on comprehensive fundraising and capacity building initiatives. We thank everyone who has informed, shaped and contributed to this work, and we are so excited about the journey ahead. Key Initiatives The following pages offer summaries of related, recent key initiatives - those that invest in maintenance and improvement of our existing campus, those that lay the foundation for growth ahead, and those that will make possible the realization of our full future vision: - The 7th & Mountain Campus Master Plan The Seed Fund, The Outside Fund (complete); - The Nature to Nurture Campaign, The Ripple Effect Campaign, The Tuition Assistance Fund, and The Annual Fund (in-progress)


the campus master plan a comprehensive vision for 7th & mountain (2015+)

the master plan

In early 2015, guided by two years of strategic organizational planning efforts, Escuela del Sol Montessori and Harwood Art Center received applications from 25 qualified architectural firms to develop a community-driven process and master plan for our historic campus. Following an intensive review, we selected the talented, innovative team led by Sam Sterling Architecture, Campoverde Architecture, and Spade Design Build. Over the following 18 months, the 7th & Mountain Campus Master Plan was envisioned and informed by diverse, representative stakeholders - from our Escuela toddlers to our most established Harwood artists. The 7th & Mountain Campus Master Plan serves to guide the enhancement and development of our campus over the coming decades, in alignment with and service to the mission, growth, and goals of our organization; it attends to the existing campus between 6th and 7th Streets, Mountain and Granite Roads. The full master plan is, literally, four books and hundreds of pages long! So here, we are offering vast and profound thanks to our community for your participation and support (especially those who contributed to The Seed Fund, noted on page 37), as well as a selection of illustrative renderings that capture our future vision - which will be made possible by our “New Funds & Campaigns, described on page 39. If you’ve missed our community presentations on the master plan thus far, we invite you to join us for our next overview and update meeting in the 2019-20 school year, for those who’ve been involved along the journey and those who’ve more recently joined our Escuela - Harwood family.


Above: Rendering of the new Escuela Primary Building & Courtyard (Phase 1) , by Sam Sterling & Campoverde Architecture Below & Left: Renderings of the Mountain Road Amphitheater (Phase 1a), by Sam Sterling & Campoverde Architecture


the seed fund

a community-led foundation for planning & growth (2015-17)

the seed fund

The Seed Fund (2015-17) created an important foundation for our Campus and Organizational Growth. Following the community-generated blueprint that emerged through comprehensive planning efforts from 2012-2014, preparations for The Seed Fund codified key milestones including: - Developing Blueprints for Escuela Program Expansion, the “Enrollment Rectangle,� and Staff Professional Development Opportunities - Opening the Junior High Program - Growing the Harwood Outreach & Income Programs - Completing the Phased Campus Master Plan - Investing in Organizational Capacity Building and Leadership - Creating a Long-term Financial Plan and prioritizing revenue generation and fundraising, to be launched with The Seed Fund How did the Seed Fund grow? - Our community committed a total of $164,087 - We received 21 Visionary contributions of $5,000+ - We received 105 Supporting contributions of $1+ (a 9 year old Escuela student donated $1 of allowance!) How was the Seed Fund used? The Seed Fund contributions were all restricted gifts, which were allocated expressly to the initiatives outlined in the campaign. Namely, The Seed Fund supported the thorough and inspired planning work of our professional master planning team, led by Sam Sterling Architects. It made possible the essential renovations and implementation of the school expansion into 7th and 8th grades in Fall 2016. And, it provided the framework for a comprehensive, multi-year fundraising campaign for the full campus and for the organization at-large. Specifically, The Seed Fund supported: - $120,087 towards Campus Master Planning by Sam Sterling Architecture and a network of expert contractors, including existing conditions, energy and engineering assessments, and the creation of a long-term, phased plan for development of our campus - $34,000 towards renovations and furnishings, teacher training, expansion and implementation to open the Escuela Jr. High - $10,000 for professional development and capacity building

total allocated through The Seed Fund: $164,087


the seed funders

thank you to the visionaries and supporters who contributed!

Visionaries ($5,000+)

Linh, Kristina & Katherine Nguyen (lead gift) Adam & Nikki Silverman David Bram & Amelia Ranney Elizabeth & Christophe Descarpentries Frank & Lisa McCulloch Frank & Patsy McCulloch Friedje vanGils & Dana McCabe The Hedges Family Honegger Dragonfly Rogers Family James & Deborah Chavez Jared & Laurie Tarbell Jim Brinkman, In Memory of Peggy Brinkman Joe and Elizabeth Marcilla Jonathan & Ellen Craig Julia Mandeville Parts Plus of New Mexico Rawlings Family Trust The Sefton/Ludwig Family Shelle & David Sanchez The Tocci Family / Contrast Inc. The Tohen Family

Supporters ($5+)

Adrian and Kathryn Wichelns-Johnston Alex Borowski Alexis Artery Allena Satpathi Amanda Lind Andrew Fearnside Angela Romero Anita Elizondo Ann Edenfield Arthur & Ellen Kaufman Ashok Reddy & Mieka Ritsema Candy Nartonis Cathy Suding Celerah Hewes-Rutledge Cheryl Hsia Christa Hazlett Christie Carroll Christie Duhigg Christopher Collins Cristina Sessa

Supporters cont’d

Daniel & Kat Abraham Danielle Baird David Rogers The Davis-Secord Family Diane Marshall Don Hedges Dona Upson & Felice Regnier Dramas Pet Supplys Drew Kirkpatrick Ebony Booth Edward McKigney Elizabeth & Neil Alessio Elizabeth & Jeff Dickson Elizabeth Radosevich Ellen Kaufman Ellie Mac Emily Schuyer Enchantment Speech Language Pathology Services Fay Abrams Fitz Glasgow Gretchen Collins Gretchen Vogelsberg GuruAmrit Smith Harwood Reunion Fund Heather Veitch Inga Tomlinson & Jonathan Guiney Janet Quintana-Cook Jeff & Jacqlyn Johns Jennifer DePaolo Jeong Lee-Tandy & Matthew Tandy John Barney Jolie Tafoya Joy Maranze JS Consulting Juli Curtis Juli Kois Karen Finkelstein / The Finklestein Family Karen Mazur & Wade Patterson Katherine & John Heck Kendall Rogers Lana Merewether

Supporters cont’d

Laura Freed Laurie Magovern & Will Thiebaut Laura Matter / The Matter Family Lauren Williams Linda Biesanz Lisa Alessio Lisa & Jarret Pearl Lita Sandoval Magdalena Silva-Banuelos Maria & Rod Geer Maria Bianca Garcia Marlene & Conor Simmons Marisa Barrera & Patrick Mulkey Mary Carter Meara Satpathi Meghan O’Neill Michael Chavez-Liberman Mike Friggens / The Friggens Family Monica Chavez Nancy McLean Peter & Molly Ritsema Howley Pierre Trolin Rachel McCormick Rachel Olinger Rebecca Wright Rita Francois Rosa Cordova Sarah Smith Savannah Cooper Scott Steffen & Lisa Jimenez Staci Drangmeister Stefan & Mindy Gutow Stephen Cook Teresa & Matt Rembe Theresa Hacsi Thomas Birdbear Tina Siegel Living Trust Todd Haagenstad Tonia Bear Vanessa Marin / The Marin Family Vashti Gamble West Bluff Center LLC Will Kaufman Zachary & Ursula Stauber


the outside fund

improvements to our outdoor educational spaces (2017-18)

the outside fund

The Escuela del Sol community of families, artists, faculty and staff developed an ambitious, beautiful master plan for the campus last year. Improving Escuela’s outdoor spaces for our students, teachers, and families who are using them now - is a central part of this work. Outdoor time is a priority for teachers at Escuela del Sol, as outdoor time is crucial to healthy and happy development for all of our children. The Outside Fund supported playground upgrades and repairs and playful discovery, physical health and more for all of the families at Escuela. How did the Outside Fund grow? - Our community committed a total of $12,776 - We received 63 contributions - Escuela added $624 to complete the projects supported by the Outside Fund How was the Outside Fund used? The Outside Fund contributions were all restricted gifts, which were allocated expressly to the initiatives outlined in the campaign. Specifically, The Outside Fund supported: - $180 for Water Pump - $1,800 for Magnet Walls - $600 for Chariots & Helmets - $3,800 for Sod - $1,020 for Outdoor Kitchen - $6,000 for Refurbishing 3 Climbers

total allocated through The Outside Fund: $12,776


the outside funders

thank you to the community members who contributed!

Adrian Johnston & Kathryn Wichelns Alexander Solodov & Alexander Khudoleeva Alexis & Joe Artery Amelia Ranney & David Bram Angela Romero Ann Edenfield-Sweet Anthony & Patricia Morton Ashok Reddy & Mieka Ritsema Barbara Salazar-King Bert Davenport & Emilie DeAngelis Billy Thiebaut & Laurie Magovern Brent Maddin & Christine Sargent Cheryl Hsia & Douglas Hartman Christie & James Duhigg Conor & Marlene Simmons Dana McCabe Deborah Chavez Diane Marshall Dona Upson & Felice Regnier Douglas Carver Elizabeth & Jeff Dickson Elizabeth Frayjo & Andrew Zeller

Elizabeth Marcilla Elizabeth Radosevich & Jason Greenlee Enchantment Speech Language Pathology Erik & Shelly Sanchez Emilio Otero Friedje vanGils Gabriel Ortiz Jarret & Lisa Pearl Jason & Jamie Cloyes Jeffrey & Leticia Simms Jessica Rowland Jessie Lundquist-Wanker & Frank Wanker Jill Levandoski & Don Metzmeier Josh & Jennifer Hanson Juli Kois Kai Ewing-Buck & Cai Buck Karen & Bill Scherzinger Katherine Cutter & Scott Schatzberg Katie Curry & Matt Myers Lance & Andrea Bernal Lauren Williams & James Gillies

Maryam Ahrajani & Paul Figueroa Melanie & Eli Ludwig Mike & Megan Friggens Mike & Nora Tocci Misty Ortiz & Brian Halona Nancy & Rob McLean Nathaniel & Laura Matter Nicole & Adam Silverman Paige Messec & Nicholas Sydow Peter Howley & Molly Ritsema Pilar Sanjuan & Rick Kellogg Prajit Arora & Aisha Sethi Quiana Salazar-King & Nicholas Trost Randy & Cynthia Price Rod & Maria Geer Rosa & Eloy Cordova Skye & Shawn Devore Sol Mates Stephen Cook & Janet Quintana-Cook Thomas & Tonia Bird Bear Will Kaufman & Rachel McCormick Zackaree & Maria Kelin

A New Playground Idea by Simon (elementary)


new funds & campaigns restricted gifts for the present and the future (2018+)

In support of our organizational and campus master planning efforts, and in partnership with consulting advisors Dr. Shelle Sanchez and Emilie de Angelis, we embarked on the creation of a comprehensive fundraising and development plan. This includes four key components, all of which we launched in 2018-19 and represent ongoing solicitation and stewardship; we offer you an overview here, and we look forward to reporting on progress and participation in next year’s community report:

The Nature to Nurture Campaign for Escuela del Sol

The home of Escuela del Sol Montessori is an extraordinary place in the heart of Albuquerque. Serving the city since 1968, we are poised to realize our organizational and campus master plans (see previous pages), in greatest service to our city’s families and children. The Nature to Nurture Campaign for Escuela del Sol is the first step. Strengthening every area of the school, this $4.8 million phase-one effort benefits people and programs, laying the groundwork for a re-invented school campus. This stage of our transformation focuses on: (1) Expanded infant and early childhood education programs – including a new primary building – where more children can benefit from the Montessori approach in their crucial early years; (2) A growing Junior High for 7th, 8th and 9th grades at the only Montessori-accredited school in the state; (3) Play structures and landscape / environment upgrades that cultivate a campus where education happens outside as much as inside, where the outdoors serves as a true learning lab.

The Ripple Effect Campaign for Our Harwood Art Center

Escuela del Sol and our Harwood Art Center believe deeply in the power of creativity to transform lives. As our city seeks a brighter future for all of our citizens, Harwood’s 28-year legacy of service can serve as a powerful and foundational centerpoint. The Ripple Effect Campaign supports our highest aspirations for Albuquerque, while ensuring a sustainable future for our art center and community campus at 7th & Mountain, through a $2.95 million phase-one effort that focuses on: (1) An innovative eco-conscious greenspace in our front yard, to serve as civic gathering place, improve visitor experience and public safety, and create equitable and universal campus access; (2) A new outdoor amphitheater along Mountain Road, to serve as a community stage and outdoor learning studio, as well as a cascading garden and green demonstration site; (3) Much-needed renovations and upgrades to the original 1925 Harwood building systems, envelope and exterior, and energy footprint; (4) A program fund to support key artistic initiatives, new exhibitions, site-specific commissions, and collaborative projects in Albuquerque, led by Harwood curators and artists.


new funds & campaigns restricted gifts for the present and the future (2018+)

The Tuition Assistance Fund

Since our inception, Escuela del Sol has worked devotedly to ensure that our exceptional programs are in reach for families. Each year, 10% of our operating budget is allocated to and expended on tuition assistance; this represented $278,947 in 2017-18. Additionally, extending our philosophy across community programs, our Harwood Art Center serves 10,000+ New Mexicans annually, many through offerings that are free to participants and funded through grants, contracts, and individual contributions. By establishing a fund specifically for tuition assistance, we aim to maintain accessibility and open up additional possibility in our annual operating budget.

The Annual Fund

Every day at Escuela is filled with thousands of moments that add up and grow over time. It happens when the toddlers venture to the butterfly habitat and visit older classmates. It happens when elementary classes care for the chickens, gather eggs, and cook something delicious together. It happens when primary students present tea to delighted grandparents or write their first word. It happens when a child points to artwork in a Harwood exhibition and relates it back to one from a year ago. And it happens when the Junior High learn to pilot drones over downtown to make a video for their band. For 50 years, Escuela has worked to bring together uncommonly great people and resources that nurture the unfolding of every student’s possibility. Along the way, our requests for special donations have bridged the gaps for needs that arise – library books, playground repairs, professional development - for a vibrant and inclusive school, and your passion and generosity have brought us to where we are. This year, we established The Escuela Fund and The Harwood Fund – our annual giving programs – to gather all those needs into single requests to help us plan for a remarkable 51st school year. Together, our community can help make possible all the thriving, beautiful moments that will add up to our best years yet.

“Watching a group of kids grow up in this community, you see that Escuela students figure out how to thrive. That’s what they do; they figure things out. Their cooperative spirit and passion for learning are an investment with compound interest.” - Karen, a parent of two students, with 10 years at Escuela


financial summaries profit and loss (2017-18) + operating budget (2018-19)

Escuela del Sol’s Head of School, Business Manager, and team of administrators oversee financial and program expenditures, per the annual budgets approved by our Board of Trustees. Below are our condensed Profit and Loss 2017-18 (last completed fiscal year) side-by-side with our Operating Budget 2018-19 (current fiscal year). For our full public financial statements, certified by our independent accountant, please see our IRS 990 filing on guidestar.com. Escuela del Sol Montessori Statement of Activities & Functional Expenses August 2017 - July 2018 Income Tuition & Fees Harwood Art Center Fundraising & Misc. Total Income Expenses Advertising Bank Fees and Dues Capital Improvements Employee Benefits Financial Aid Miscellaneous Expenses Occupancy Office Expenses Outside Services Payroll Taxes Professional Fees Program Events Program Supplies Public Relations Salaries and Wages Technology Depreciation Interest Total Expenses

$2,663,437 $338,252 $51,535 $3,053,224

$34,291 $29,188 $20,489 $187,652 $278,947 $8,714 $183,345 $5,375 $123,398 $124,698 $10,460 $55,163 $68,471 $35,011 $1,700,792 $4,030 $122,925 $28,982 $3,021,931

Escuela del Sol Montessori Operating Budget August 2018 - July 2019 Income Tuition & Fees Harwood Art Center Fundraising & Misc. Total Income Expenses Advertising Bank Fees and Dues Capital Improvements Employee Benefits Financial Aid Miscellaneous Expenses Occupancy Office Expenses Outside Services Payroll Taxes Professional Fees Program Events Program Supplies Public Relations Salaries and Wages Technology Total Expenses

$2,980,000 $400,000 $50,000 $3,430,000

$32,000 $29,000 $29,100 $373,500 $290,000 $8,000 $301,600 $6,800 $155,000 $130,000 $11,000 $58,000 $75,000 $38,000 $1,810,000 $8,500 $3,355,500


Escuela del Sol Operating Expenses 2018-19 1% 3%

4%

Capital Improvements (1%)

5%

Admin Costs, Fees, Advertising, Supplies (3%)

9% Program: Supplies, Events, F&F (4%)

9%

Outside Services & Fees (5%) Financial Aid (9%)

69%

Occupancy (9%) Employees: Salaries, Benefits & Taxes (69%)

compensation summaries employee salary & benefit packages (2018-19)

Escuela del Sol’s single greatest expenditure every year is our people. In 2018-19, 69% of our operating expenses are allocated to the educators and administrators who share their talent and dedication with our community every day. Every compensation package begins with a base salary and is then tailored to the employee and their circumstances; packages may include: - Cafeteria Plan (FSA) - Tuition Assistance - Continuing Education and Professional Development - Health and Dental Insurance (Escuela pays 60% of employee premiums, 40% of dependents) - 403b Retirement Account (Escuela matches employee contributions, up to 3% of salary) Full-Time Staff Role Median Base Salary Median Salary Package Toddler Lead Teacher $34,578 $42,203 Primary Lead Teacher $39,986 $49,919 Elementary Assistant Teacher $32,750 $49,702 Elementary - Jr. High Lead Teacher $47,875 $57,373 Administrator, 12-months (EDS + HAC) $46,718 $52,617


our board & staff

it’s our nature to nurture, thanks to the nature of our people

Board of Trustees Maria Garcia Geer, President Deborah Chavez, Treasurer Allison Chavez Ann Edenfield-Sweet Elizabeth Dickson Fay Abrams Seemi Mirza

Toddler Educators Jolie Tafoya Joy Maranze Kelly Watson Monica Chavez Rhian Small Rita Francois Shaina Brinkman

Facilities & Maintenance Gilbert Armijo Jim Heinl Jimmy Griego Joe Marcilla Jonathan Guiney Shawn Dwyer

Primary Educators Aliyah Farooki-Qidwai Chamisa Edmo Elizabeth Harris Emily Schuyler Gretchen Vogelsberg Joslynn de Herrera Lisa Alessio Lisa Pearl Shardae LeDouix Sophia Nuanez Stephen Lopez

Elementary Educators Atziry Jordan Ben Tobias Cassandra Tapia Cristina Sessa IngaTomlinson Madeline Foy Savanah Cole Sharayah Williams Wil MacNeil Jr. High Educators & Partners Carmela Chavez-Liberman Kate Viers Lisa Slavick Steve Dixon Tanesia Hale-Jones General Educators Casey Mraz, Music Christy Cook, Art Domenica Barile, Spanish Juli Kois, Garden Michael Chavez-Liberman, Cafe Molly Heavilin Dobrian, Lit - IP Ramon Chavez, Cafe

Administrators Friedje vanGils, Executive Director & Head of School Becky Weishampel, Community Relations Coordinator Chris Loss, Business Manager Dani Belvin, Harwood Programs & Education Coordinator Dana McCabe, Primary Administrator Elizabeth Marcilla, Assistant Head of School & Director of Admissions Florian Herrmann, Service Adventure Intern GuruAmrit Smith, Harwood Director of Operations Jennifer DePaolo, Harwood Associate Director of Community Outreach Julia Mandeville, Org. Project Manager & Harwood Chief Programs Officer Moe Hickey, School Administrator Sarah Louderbough, Elementary & Jr. High Administrator Staci Drangmeister, Harwood Programs & Operations Coordinator


Profile for Harwood Art Center

Escuela del Sol Montessori - Harwood Art Center - Community Report 2017-18  

This report provides us an opportunity to reflect on our organization's 50 year history and our path for the future 50 years; it offers impo...

Escuela del Sol Montessori - Harwood Art Center - Community Report 2017-18  

This report provides us an opportunity to reflect on our organization's 50 year history and our path for the future 50 years; it offers impo...

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