Thanks for your interest in Sea Crest’s Next Level Campaign, which is raising funds for the following improvements to the school:
- The addition of an Innovation Lab, a space dedicated to hands-on learning—bringing students a space to build, experiment, and invent. The Lab will be a place for teaching invaluable 21st century skills such as collaboration, creativity, design, and engineering.
- Construction of a second story onto the main building—bringing the school three new classrooms, as well as storage and office space—within the roofline of the existing structure. These flexible, modern classrooms will provide the space needed to move some of the school’s enrichment programs out of temporary portable rooms and into the main building.
We need your support to take Sea Crest to the next level—please use the donate now button at left to donate through justgive.org, or download the pledge form to spread your payments over time.
Please click on the link to download a copy of our Next Level Campaign brochure.
Please click on the following links to hear experts on the use and benefits of innovation labs in our schools.
Paulo Blikstein is Assistant Professor at Stanford University School of Education. Blikstein's research focus on how new technologies can deeply transform the learning of science, engineering and mathmatics. In this recent TED talk, Blikstein makes the case for innovation labs in America’s schools.
Tony Wagner recently accepted a position as the first Innovation Education Fellow at the Technology & Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard. Prior to this, he was the founder and co-director of the Change Leadership Group at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Tony consults widely to schools, districts, and foundations around the country and internationally. In this TED talk, Tony discusses his recent book, Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World.
Creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson challenges the way we're educating our children.
He champions a radical rethink of our school systems, to cultivate creativity and acknowledge multiple types of intelligence.
What is a capital campaign?
Capital campaigns are held at nearly 100% of independent schools to fund a major project or addition. Typically once or twice during a family’s involvement with a school they will be asked to help fund an important effort like the Next Level Campaign. This particular campaign is important to Sea Crest because it will bring the school necessary space via a second story addition, as well as giving our students access to cutting-edge curriculum opportunities via the Innovation Lab.
When was the last time Sea Crest held a capital campaign?
In the past, Sea Crest families have enthusiastically supported the school’s capital campaigns. Seven years ago the school raised $750,000 to build our Middle School facilities, and 14 years ago $600,000 was raised to build the Kohrs Family Center.
Why are we doing this project now?
There are several factors that make this the ideal time to complete this project:
- *Thanks to the generosity of one of our parents we can take advantage of a significant discount in our construction cost if we can complete this work within 2013.
- The permit for our portables will expire after next year so we need to move these students/classes inside the main building. This construction project will give us the space to make that happen.
- *Finally, our school being near full enrollment and our healthy financial status make this an excellent time to take this step.
Would it make more sense to delay this until we have a new permanent head of school?
Our new Head of School will be here full time in July and is fully supportive of the plans.
Dr. Tom Walters, our Interim Head of School is very experienced in these types of matters and will continue to be very involved. As was the case with the construction of gym and
middle school building, our board of trustees is strongly committed to making this project successful and has already contributed a significant percentage of the funds required to complete the project.
What are the risks involved with this project?
With a project of this scale there are some risks which have been carefully considered:
- Permits. The planning commission has approved our plans and we are now working with the city planning department on final permits. We expect that the project will be permitted on time.
- Construction delays. It is expected that the work can all be completed during the summer break of 2013, effectively starting the day after school ends and ending the day before school starts. Our proposed construction partner, a Sea Crest parent, is confident about the timing and has performed flawlessly on other school projects in the past. We will have a back-up plan to address any issues with a delay in the completion of the project.
- Costs. It is also common for large-scale construction projects to go over budget. Sea Crest has some funds in reserve to address any cost overruns. Assuming we are able to raise the goal amount of our campaign ($850,000) we will have reserve funds to address additional costs.
How much will the project cost?
We need approximately $850K to complete the project, not including some ongoing future costs related to maintenance and upkeep of the Innovation Lab.
What will happen if we don’t raise enough money? Or too much money?
We have a good head start on our fundraising, with a significant commitment from the Board of Trustees and other Sea Crest families who have already contributed more than a third of our total goal. We are confident this campaign will be successful, given our success in raising similar amounts in past capital campaigns. If we raise more money than targeted (which we certainly hope is the case), we will either apply the overage to our reserves or put it towards a new project such as improvement of our sports field.
How much do are parents expected to donate? Can we pay some now and some later?
Any amount is greatly appreciated. A simple calculation to make would be to take the $850K required and divide it by the number of families in the school (approximately 190), which results in roughly $4,500 per family. Of course some families are in a position and are interested in giving more and others less depending on many factors. We are asking each family to consider stretching a bit on their donation to make this significant improvement to our campus. We are requesting that families commit to a total donation now, but we are providing a number of options for payments to be made over the course of the next three years. This is to allow more flexibility and to facilitate larger giving than could be done perhaps in a single year.
Will you accept donations of physical items or stock as well as cash?
Cash is always easiest for the school to process, however Sea Crest can accept donations of stock as well. All stock received will be converted to cash by the school as soon as possible. Sea Crest is not able to accept the donation of cars or other physical items towards this campaign.
Is this donation tax deductible?
Sea Crest is a 501c3 organization, and our tax ID number is: 94-3250488. As such, donations to Sea Crest School and to this campaign are generally deductible with limits related to type and amount. We suggest that you consult a tax professional regarding your specific situation.
Are there opportunities for families to be recognized for their giving?
We are offering specific recognition for donations at all level above $2,500 (see enclosed form for details) as well as recognition of all donors, except those requesting to remain anonymous, in our annual report. In addition, if you can secure matching funding from an organization for your gift that amount will be added to your donation in determining the recognition level.
What is the timing of the construction?
Construction will start after the last day of school in the spring of 2013 and end before the first day of school in the fall of 2013.
Who is managing the construction?
The boards of trustees, led by the head of the facilities committee, and head of school have hired and will oversee the construction company.
What will the school look like after the construction?
The construction will not alter the roofline and all additions will be housed within the current building, which will help keep the cost and permitting requirements to a minimum. A second floor will be added over the entire length of the center of the school from the entrance to the back. The building was originally designed so that a second story could be added when the time was right. Stairways and an elevator will provide access to the second floor where additional classrooms, meeting spaces, offices and storage will be located. The Innovation Lab will be housed within the first floor center section.
What is an Innovation Lab? Are they very common in schools?
Innovation Labs are still a new but increasingly popular phenomenon in education. Stanford University pioneered the concept of Innovation Labs in conjunction with their concept of ‘Design Thinking’. Design Thinking is a framework for creative brainstorming, collaborative learning, experimentation, inventing and a hands-on approach to design, science and engineering. Innovation Labs are now found at many top creative corporations like IDEO, and more recently they have been built at a few Peninsula schools including Castilleja in Palo Alto and Nueva in Hillsborough. Each school uses their lab a little bit differently, but what they all have in common is that they offer students a place to explore ‘out of the box’ thinking with a hands-on approach to learning. Our lab will give students a place to practice the skills that will be most important to tomorrow’s leaders: the ability to think creatively, work collaboratively, and experiment and learn from their mistakes. Sea Crest’s lab will be purpose-built to suit the specific needs of our teachers and students. Ours will be the only Innovation Lab on the coast and one of the few in the Bay Area located at a K-8 school. More information on Innovation Labs and their value to schools can be found at www.seacrestschool.org/nextlevel.
When will students be able to use the Innovation Lab?
A planning committee made up of Sea Crest teachers, administrators and parents will work together during this school year to define the vision for the Sea Crest Lab. It is expected that some activities will start on a limited basis during 2013 with increasing integration into the curriculum during the 2nd half of the 2013–14 school year. The lab will be fully operational starting in the fall of 2014, but it will constantly change and adapt to our unique curriculum as well as new and evolving educational trends.