Earlier this week, The Beech Hill School shared news of a $1.3 million gift with its faculty and with families of current and former students. Head of School, Rick Johnson, describes the gift as “transformative” and “monumental.”
The Beech Hill School, an independent middle school serving grades 6---8, opened its doors in 2012. Founder and Board Chair, Emily Ricard, envisioned that The Beech Hill School would emerge as a leader in middle school education, and this gift helps to position the school accordingly. The donor, a couple who does not wish to be named at this time, has been tracking the school’s progress since its beginning and believes this gift will allow the school to transition from its infancy unencumbered by the initial cost of start---up. The gift has provided an opportunity for the School to consolidate and reckon all debts incurred during the inception and early growth phases of the school, clearing a path for increased financial stability.
In the past three years, the school reports that interest in the school has been growing rapidly, and enrollment in both full---year and summer programs has been increasing steadily. Based on the e---mail that was circulated to families announcing this gift, “The donor is excited for the school’s future, noting the following successes:
The governance shown by the board has been exceptional.
The programs the school has developed and delivered are exemplary.
The growth of the school, as measured by enrolled students, continues at a healthy and consistent pace.
The support shown by faculty, families, and friends of the school, in terms gifts to the Annual Fund,
indicates resonance of mission and long---term sustainability.”
Regarding a gift of this magnitude, BHS has indicated that, “Based on the School’s research, only six gifts of this size or greater have been given to independent schools in New Hampshire, excluding Phillip’s Exeter Academy and St. Paul’s School, from 2000 to 2013. Nationally, it is even more rare for a middle school to be the recipient of such generosity, let alone a school with our limited history.”
Overall, this gift is received with tremendous gratitude and excitement. According to Mr. Johnson, “This gift exemplifies The Beech Hill School’s community spirit and is received with the awareness that all donations of time, money, and energy matter at a school of our size and age. This gift has only amplified the enthusiasm and positivity that are hallmarks of The Beech Hill School culture.”