A Heartfelt Reflection From Our CEO As We Enter Our Sixth Year
As we close our fifth fiscal year, I wanted to share a personal note about where we are and where we are headed.
When we launched our school in 2016, we did not realize how much we did not know about such a venture. As a pastor for 30 years, I knew a lot about churches and growing them, but a school was a whole different animal. Each year was unique and brought new learning challenges as we added a grade, hired more staff, and found more people in the community who believed in what we were doing.
I’ve often said this is by far the biggest faith journey I’ve been on. As a pastor, I saw our congregation grow, built a building, hired staff, and planted daughter churches. It was a faith journey to be sure, but I never imagined the kind of faith growing a school would take–finding families and community partners who believed in us–families who believed in us enough to entrust us with their students’ education; and community partners who believed in us enough to invest their hard-earned, limited philanthropic dollars, even as we were just getting established as a school. Partners like this invest each year so that we can make this quality, Christ-centered, private-school education available to all, regardless of their ability to pay. They do this so that students like Maddie, whom I often refer to, can continue with us year after year. Her excitement to learn is contagious, and she looks forward to going to school, especially when her friend Lexi is here.
We closed our fifth fiscal year at the end of June with income above what we anticipated and a staff excited to move our school to the next level. We’re hiring seven new staff members, including three part-time “specials” teachers for music, art, and physical education–all of which are an important part of our academic program. We’re now able to build in teacher planning periods and offer exceptional curriculum to provide the very best education possible for our young learners.
I’ve learned a lot in the past five or six years. Here are some of my takeaways:
Our students are smart – There’s a widely-held perception that students who come from poverty are less intelligent and unable to rise to academic and social/emotional challenges. At Logos Academy Harrisburg, this has not been the case. Most of our students have a love for learning and respond well to challenges, no matter where they are on the economic scale. The same is true of their parents.
Our staff are called – Almost without exception, our staff express some sense of being called to work at Logos Academy Harrisburg. Our new principal, Liz Myers, said she felt a “tug” that our school was the place for her. As a small donor-supported school, our salaries cannot compete with larger private or public schools, yet we continue to attract talented educators, administrators, and support staff who go above and beyond to deliver a quality Christ-centered education.
Our partners are generous – If you include those who donate through the Pennsylvania Tax Credit program, just under 75 percent of our annual income comes from individual donors like you. You have given generously because you believe in what we are doing, you believe in our mission, and likely you believe, as my friend Kirk Hallet likes to say, that “education is the best anti-poverty program.”
A donor once told me, “I met with you initially out of a sense of obligation, but I left that meeting convinced that Logos Academy Harrisburg was worth my investment.“
As we approach our sixth year, we need your continued support more than ever.
It is a collaborative effort – A family member recently commented that I must be very proud of the school I built. I am proud, but healthy organizations do not grow and flourish on the efforts of just one individual. It’s the collaboration between our talented teachers, effective administrators, faithful community partners, committed parents, and gifted student support staff that enables Logos Academy Harrisburg and its students to grow and thrive.