Head of School Blog

An Important Day for SF Day

October 16, 2019

Dear SF Day Community,

I see the school in action on a daily basis, and I have to say, how SF Day represented itself in front of the Planning Commission last Thursday was a moving and impressive display of the many ways the school touches the lives of students, families, and the community it is a part of. 

After a technical presentation by Studio Bondy, the project architects, I highlighted our school’s founding principles. Each speaker that followed powerfully embodied those values. With their children at their side, SF Day parents Amie Nenninger and Zefania Preza both spoke passionately of how the school has shaped and inspired their children, is an extension of their family life, and works hard to promote the values of community engagement and giving back to our neighborhood.

Loren Moyé, through the experience of his twenty-one years at SF Day, and as Dean of Faculty, spoke on behalf of the teachers, highlighting what they do for our students, and the support they need to be able to continue to do so. A key tenet of the project design is housing for faculty, an element that several commissioners praised when explaining their affirmative vote. 

Andy Shin, Executive Director of Breakthrough, eloquently unpacked the impressive impact of Breakthrough. The commissioners were clearly moved by the 250 students in the Breakthrough program and also found the teacher training program to be compelling. 

Reed Colley, SF Day board chair and parent of four, spoke to our school’s strategic commitment to advance a project that will improve and enhance the learning for students and support the faculty who teach them while contributing to and partnering with the community we are a part of. 

Eighth-graders Isadora and Adam, through both their words and demeanor, shared how SF Day has inspired them to pursue their interests in literature, math, music, STEM, performance, and more. Their well-roundedness, poise, ability to advocate for something they believe in, and their authentic gratitude for the experiences they have been given, were clearly a highlight for the Commission.

As the project went to vote, not only did each commissioner express their affirmative support, they also acknowledged how the values of SF Day characterized our presentation. They appreciated the measures we have taken to partner with our neighborhood (thank you all for supporting our essential traffic improvements) and they genuinely seemed gratified by our endeavor. 

With this accomplishment behind us, we look forward to proceeding with design, permitting, fundraising, and construction. We will be speaking in more detail about these elements at the upcoming Fireside Chat on October 22 and parent/guardian events throughout the year.

We are so excited about how our facilities project will enable us to:

  • Expand and improve the Art and Innovation spaces
  • Provide a rooftop garden to advance our sustainability and environmental sciences
  • Expand and improve outdoor play spaces
  • Provide performance and gathering spaces for groups of up to two hundred 
  • Provide rehearsal and instructional spaces for ensembles 
  • Accommodate the growing interest in robotics and emerging technologies
  • Provide housing for faculty
  • Update and improve the current facility
  • Expand the endowment 

The school purchased the first adjacent property eighteen years ago and has been working on realizing these dreams throughout that entire time. We have reached significant milestones these past four years and thank everyone who helped us get to this point. We remain dedicated to move SF Day into this next important chapter.

With gratitude,

Dr. Mike Walker

 

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