April 28, 2016

OWNERS! Join our celebration!

Artist's rendering of what our new front door may look like
(credit: Mike Folwell of Folwell Studios)
Friends’ School is now the proud owner of a second 2.4 acre campus at 3800 Kalmia Avenue. Although this real estate deal has been in the works for several months, I officially signed the paperwork on Friday.  We take possession of the property on June 1st.

The new campus will house our first ever 6th grade class this fall, and then the 7th and 8th grades as they are added in 2017 and 2018.  We also plan to have brand new spaces for our Teacher Preparation Program and several of our administrative offices. It has enough space to accommodate a middle school of 140 students, complete with a maker space, gym, music room, art room, collaboration space, art gallery, bike shop, and more!

Please join us in celebrating this bold new step for Friends’ next Wednesday morning outside the elementary building, right before the start of school.  We will have refreshments for all and plans for the middle school for you to view. Our recently hired 6th grade teacher Kevin Nugent will be on hand to meet everyone. Dacia is baking especially yummy things for the occasion!

We have grand plans underway to renovate the buildings at our Kalmia campus and we are working with an architect and contractors, as well as the County, to get those plans solidified.

As you may be aware, buying commercial property in Boulder is not always a straightforward process.  There are many hoops to jump through.  We have had an incredible team putting in thousands of hours behind the scenes to bring this dream to reality.

I am so very grateful to everyone who has been involved with this enormous project. Everyone on our administrative team, our Community Board and its various committees, and our legal and real estate teams, has had a hand in this process.  There are too many to mention everyone.  But a grand shout-out must go to our Board chair, Elizabeth Henna, long-time trustees Carol Hampf, Amy Carpenter and Jen Greene, director of finance Jen Cope, and middle school director Shelby Pawlina for their passion and tireless efforts on behalf of the school. As Shelby told the staff: “It turns out it is so much more complicated than buying a house! I couldn’t begin to explain
View across the playing  field at our Kalmia campus
it to you, but suffice it to say that we have the right people in the right seats to have made this possible.”

This summer, we will see the emergence of this north Boulder campus that feels like Friends’ School.  Just as our existing Pennsylvania campus has been transformed over the years by the attention and love of hundreds of staff, parents, and students who are here now, or who have come before us, so too will the Kalmia campus receive the same attention and love.

Our first class of sixth graders and their families, ably led by Kevin and Shelby, and a host of specialist teachers are pioneers. They are at the inception of a bold new venture. We are excited to see them take these first steps.

Friends' Kalmia campus will be home to hundreds of middle schoolers and teachers in training for years to come!

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