Anonymous foundation provides over $100,000 for teacher training, program assistance, and ministry sustainability for four life-changing schools.

San Miguel Educators of DENA

Eatontown, NJ – Thanks to an anonymous, private foundation, the Brothers of the Christian Schools, District of Eastern North America’s (DENA) four San Miguel Middle Schools are receiving a $110,000 grant to bolster their educational mission.

The San Miguel School in Providence, RI, La Salle Academy in Philadelphia, PA, The De La Salle School in Freeport, NY, and the San Miguel School in Washington, DC, work with middle school aged students to provide a life changing education that is not only focused on strong academics, but teaches responsible life skills, fosters social and relational development, and promotes service to others.

Serving some of the poorest in their respective communities, the schools are donor driven, charging families only a nominal tuition that covers less than 5% of the operational costs, while providing an education that far exceeds available options. In addition to the small, specialized school environment, which includes an extended school day and year, along with educational enrichment activities, each San Miguel School offers a Graduate Support Program. Before and upon graduating, San Miguel Schools aid their students not only in being accepted to area public and private high schools, but also to follow them through to commencement, and into college, the military, or the workforce. The Graduate Support programs ensure scholastic and personal success throughout high school by keeping an open line of communication with students, families, and school faculties. They also provide resources for academic assistance.

As a result of the funding from this grant, the faculties of all four schools were able to participate in the Huether Lasallian Conference (pictured), hosted in New Orleans from November 21-23, 2013, by the Lasallian Region of North America. With the theme Meaningful Instruction: Living Lasallian Pedagogy, the conference featured academic leaders such as renowned educator and activist, Jonathan Kozol; author and founder of aha! Process, Dr. Ruby Payne; President of the National Catholic Education Association, Brother Robert Bimonte, FSC. The experience allowed the forty-five Lasallian educators to consider how best to refine and improve their instructional activities for the urban middle school students they serve.

Impressed with the unique Graduate Support feature of the San Miguel educational model, the foundation has also issued a challenge to each of the four schools to raise an additional $15,000 for its Graduate Support programs, in the form of a matching grant.

Just as these schools have provided support and sustainability to its students, the foundation believes the contribution these schools make to their communities is valuable and wants to ensure their long term success.  With foundation funding, these San Miguel Schools will be working with a consultant to review all aspects of their ministries, and to put plans in place for long-term sustainability and structure.

Doing so much with so little, these San Miguel Schools of DENA have changed the lives of over 600 students since the first school’s inception 20 years ago. Thanks to this anonymous support, much is now being put in place to ensure a lifetime of children will have access to a remarkable Lasallian education.