Austin Chapel, home to assemblies and weekly chapel services for all three divisions, will be expanded from a capacity of 400 to 600 to accommodate the entire high school student body and faculty as well as visitors. While it is our greatest desire to teach our students that worship is not exclusive to formal, corporate settings, the opportunity for students to attend chapel each week to worship together and listen to teachers and fellow students speak about the impact God has had, and is having, on their lives, is truly powerful. This planned addition to Austin Chapel allows us to continue to gather together and to set aside time to remind each other of who He is and who He wants us to be. Additionally, new space will be created under Austin Chapel, including new classrooms, student spaces for and collaboration and faculty offices.
The creation of two additional athletic fields at the lake field complex will create the immediate benefit of additional practice space and will pave the way for the creation of a middle school lacrosse program for girls and boys. However, the true impact will be that more Wesleyan students will have the opportunity to be under the leadership and mentoring of our teachers and coaches. The strength of the Wesleyan School community is found in the relationships established between students and teachers. The mission of Wesleyan can only be delivered on a personal level, which is why we only hire people who love God, love what they teach, and love whom they teach. These additional fields and the programs they will serve will allow more students and families to experience the Wesleyan community, mentored by caring, Christian role models who live out an authentic faith.
Warren Hall, home to Wesleyan’s Lower School, will be expanded to include a small wing with a 110-person capacity meeting room and two rooms for our highly successful faculty childcare center, the Cub’s Den. The large meeting room will allow us to maintain and enhance our partnership with parents as it will serve as the home to our highly successful Parent University program. Through Parent University, the school works with parents to sharpen parenting skills and provide tools for the parenting tool belt. The Cub’s Den program was created as a retention strategy to keep good teachers at the school by assisting them with childcare for their pre-school aged children. The program has been highly successful and now needs a permanent home. Education works best when it is an active and thriving partnership between the school and its parents, as well as when the school attracts and retains a faculty of the highest quality.
Financial aid continues to play a significant role at Wesleyan. By increasing our financial aid endowment, we are able to secure permanent funds for this purpose, allowing us to continue our belief that financial aid should not be funded by tuition, but through gifts to the school. Not only does financial aid create socio-economic diversity at the school, but it allows the school to maintain its academic standards by admitting students based on their ability to do the work, not on the ability of their parents to pay full tuition. Additionally, creating endowment for building maintenance allows the school to be forward thinking in anticipation of major repairs to aging buildings. Replacing roofs and chillers can be costly, and by endowing those needs, the funds for those projects do not impact the operating budget. We are seeking to create a sustainable financial model for the future which will provide the highest level of financial flexibility for the school for years to come.
The Curley Tennis Courts presently allow for seven matches to be played at a time. The proposed expansion, four additional courts, will complete the tennis center by providing enough courts for girls and boys tennis matches (and practices) to be held simultaneously.