Annual Fund

Running a school is expensive! We receive approximately $6,800 per pupil in funding from the state to offer the kind of award-winning education for which private schools charge tens of thousands of dollars. In addition, we offer orchestra for all ... and for free! Initially, we purchased our instruments out of substantial start-up grant funding. Now, we cover this cost out of our per-pupil revenue. For the 2016-17 school year, we have budgeted $58,000 on instruments and repairs alone.

The Annual Fund money will be used for the general operation of the school, but if you would like to request that your donation be directed to the specific funds below, you may do so when you submit your donation. (If you are donating using the below PayPal button, please leave your specifications in the "Comments to the Seller" section.)

  • Orchestra -- Orchestra is one of the hallmarks of the MacLaren education. How many schools out there, public or private, insist that every single student will learn to play Bach on the cello, or Vivaldi on the viola, and will have the joy of playing together for an hour a day in an ensemble of their peers? We don't know of any other. We are committed to giving our students this experience of beauty, and as such, we have made our Orchestra program a pillar of our budget: $166,000 last year in instruments, repairs, and salaries; another $58,000 has been budgeted this year on new instruments and repairs, over half of which has already been spent in the first quarter of the school year. If you believe, as we do, that making music is not an extra, not a bonus, but an essential human activity, please invest in our Orchestra program.
  • STEM/MATLAB® -- At a time when our local district high schools are performing in the 53rd percentile in the state in math, MacLaren's high school performs in the 99th percentile. Our students graduate having taken, not just calculus, but three semesters of calculus followed by advanced topics. They study physics with a teacher who trained at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, chemistry with a veteran research scientist, and biology with a former District Wildlife Manager. Simply put, our STEM program is outstanding - but it could be even better. With an investment of $10,000, we can buy new lab equipment to give our students the tools they need to do more sophisticated research and discovery. MacLaren is one of a handful of secondary schools in the country that integrates the language of MATLAB® into its upper-level math and science curriculum. This computer programming course allows students to develop not only the problem-solving skills needed for our graduates, but the ability to create for themselves working mathematical models of physical phenomena. In order for us to keep our system on the cutting edge, we need to invest thousands of dollars annually; this year alone we are budgeting $35,000. Help our students maximize one of the most exciting parts of our curriculum.
  • Athletics - Six years ago, MacLaren had a few fledging athletic teams who were able to compete in the YMCA and Parks & Rec systems. This fall alone, we fielded 5 athletic teams across our middle and high school, 2 cross country and 3 soccer teams, and expect equally high turnout for our winter and spring sports. Our athletic budget has grown correspondingly, to $35,000. However, with all our new uniforms, equipment, and gymnasium/field rentals, this isn't enough. We are asking all sports fans to invest in this integral, character-building, inspiring aspect of student life. Go Highlanders!

Click the "Donate" button below to give to Thomas MacLaren School's Annual Fund!

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