February 7, 2019  

 


Dear Academy Parents,
 
We want to follow up the exciting announcement about Mr. Adrian Allan, our new head of school, with our traditional mid-year update.
 
During the fall semester, many of you expressed satisfaction with your ongoing experience at the Academy and the benefits that your family gains from being part of our community.  You can expect the same for the remainder of the school year.  Your students will have a dynamic learning experience - one guided by our dedicated and caring faculty in an environment that is both challenging and nurturing, and generating excellent outcomes.
 
An Academy education translates into valuable and tangible results.  Our graduates affirm the value of their comprehensive Academy experience and its advantages upon witnessing how they translate into superior success in college and beyond.
 
Our commitments to you for the duration of the school year are firm and we are dedicated to succeeding.

  • The safety and security of our students:  our Safety Committee continues to assess measures suggested by external consultants, and schedules monthly updates and training for our faculty and staff.
  • The social and emotional growth of all students in an environment focused on developing an increased sense of integrity and healthy self-advocacy.
  • The Academy's fiscal sustainability:  the Board of Trustees and our administration remain focused on increasing the school's revenue from net enrollment tuition and contributions.  There are no quick solutions to this challenge - one experienced by almost all tuition-based schools.  We are moving deliberately and prudently as leaders of successful, financially sustainable independent schools advocate. 
    • The wise course of action for next year's operating budget includes a tuition increase (with the exception of the Early Childhood program), careful consideration of requests for financial assistance, and more concentrated efforts to solicit contributions from Academy alumni, and local businesses and foundations.
    • Thus far this year, our development staff has secured $359,900 in contributions and pledged commitments - a significant increase over the $209,600 raised at this point last year.  Additionally, our trustees have generously contributed $20,700 and pledged to raise another $39,300. While our development efforts have been positive, our ultimate goal is to raise another $265,000 by June 30.  Please join us and become part of the successful effort to reach this goal by contributing to The Academy Fund, participating in our lively Spring Gala (April 27!), or allocating EITC donations to the Academy.  Please call our Development Office with your questions and commitments of support.
    • Much of the funding secured from local businesses and foundations is restricted for student scholarship - a critical element to ensure that we can admit talented and motivated students who will thrive in our educational programs.  For example, in December, two local foundations contributed a total of $100,000 for scholarship purposes.  Our development staff has secured another $150,000 from The Donald B. and Dorothy L. Stabler Foundation, which we will receive in $50,000 increments over the next three years.  These funds are "budget-relieving" and therefore they play a significant role in our financial projections.
    • As was described in a number of earlier additions of The Explorer, the Academy owns two adjoining tracts of land across routes 11 and 15.  One parcel is developed with our soccer field and tennis courts.  The other extends east to Riverview Road and is not developed.  At the right time, we will put the undeveloped parcel on the market for sale.  Whereas the soccer field and tennis courts are essential to our programs, there has not been a highly compelling reason during the past 35 years to improve the second parcel. 

Thank you for entrusting our faculty and staff with the education of your students.  At a time when it is becoming increasingly challenging for communities to animate their mission and core values, we believe Harrisburg Academy provides a superior opportunity for your students and family to grow and develop in a safe and affirming manner.
 
With all best regards,



Jim Newman
Head of School

Javier Idrovo
President, Board of Trustees