Fall Newsletter & Annual Report 2022

FALL 2022




Bertschi School educates children to become compassionate, confident, and creative learners in a global community.

Our community values integrity, inclusiveness, respect, diversity, and a commitment to sustainability.

We value diversity and believe engaging our differences makes us better and stronger. We welcome and honor the unique contributions of people from all racial, ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds, gender identities, learning styles, physical abilities, and sexual orientations. Our commitment to equity drives us to be inclusive and diverse in all areas of our school.

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Dr. Raymond Yu was appointed Bertschi's third head of school beginning in July 2022. An empathetic and inspiring community builder, Raymond was most recently at The Blake School in Minneapolis, Minnesota. curriculum and instruction, and a bachelor's degree in psychology. He has over 30 Raymond holds a doctorate in educational leadership, a master's degree in

in both public and private schools, a principal of two public elementary schools, and in several independent elementary school leadership roles. Raymond has a deep commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, mostly recently demonstrated by building long-term supportive relationships with marginalized communities, including the Mdewakanton Sioux and local immigrant populations in Minnesota. years of experience in elementary education. He has served as a classroom teacher

Hello Bertschi Community,

Greetings! The 2022-2023 school year is off to a great start, and the students are busy learning about themselves and the world around them. Every day there are countless amazing moments I get to witness that add up to transformational experiences for the lives of our children. I’d like to share two of them with you. Recently, our fifth grade students were exploring their individual identities through the medium of Cornell boxes, named after the late American artist, Joseph Cornell. Our students drew upon both their creativity and objects-of- interest to share more about themselves. In addition, our students wrote artist statements based on the prompt, “What are some important aspects of your personality and how does your Cornell Box represent these aspects?” As I read each student’s statement I learned more about what matters most to them. The following excerpt captures one of our students’ reflections, “The gems on both sides of my Cornell box walls symbolize my friends. Friendship and all of the people I love shape my personality and I wanted the gems to reflect that. My good friend gave me those gems and to honor that love I put them in my Cornell box." Another highlight has been our second graders’ market study. Our students learned about Pike Place Market as well as markets from several different countries. The second graders sold handmade goods as well as seasonal produce from a farm that they had recently visited. Students learned how locally made products can have both a positive impact on local artisans as well as a reduced impact on our environment. One way we can further our understanding of cultures and sustainability is through immersive experiences that foster a deeper understanding of how food is grown, harvested, and brought to market. Our second graders were also excited to further their understanding of markets through our community wide market days. They were deeply and energetically involved in the set up and sales. It was a fabulous celebration for all! As you read our Bertschi fall news and annual report, I hope you are as inspired as I am with our community and that it reinforces your appreciation of the Bertschi experience. I’m confident we can improve the world with global citizens who are compassionate, confident, and creative. The Bertschi kid!

Warm regards,


Raymond Yu | Head of School


In May 2022, our board of trustees approved a new campus master plan , which lays out a high-level vision for potential campus updates and changes over the next five to ten years.

The master plan was developed by Olson Kundig, the local architectural firm known internationally for its creative and sustainable designs. The plan reflects input from across the entire Bertschi community, past and present, including over 600+ community ideas and comments and 300 student designs.

The plan includes multiple phases of projects that will improve all areas of our campus, advancing both our mission and our leadership in environmentally sustainable and student-centered design.

What Are the Key Priorities of the Plan?

Prioritize universal accessibility Continue to lead in environmental sustainability Leverage our campus as the “third teacher" Maintain the unique “village” feel and scale of campus Upgrade teacher work and collaboration spaces Improve classrooms and learning spaces

This early conceptual drawing by Olson Kundig shows a rebuilt schoolhouse and a universally- accessible front entrance that welcomes visitors into a newly imagined main courtyard.



We want to push the boundaries of what’s possible in elementary education and build upon Bertschi’s position as a leader of environmental sustainability—all through a lens of equity and our community values.

New spaces will be large, with plenty of natural light, good acoustics, the flexibility to support differentiated, hands-on learning, as well as child-led exploration, creativity, and problem-solving. Our teachers will be able to deliver our excellent program in classrooms that even more effectively support the students and better foster collaboration between teachers. High Quality Learning Spaces Environmental Sustainability & Justice As we prepare to enter the design phase for future campus development, we remain committed to environmental sustainability–and to the development of something new: a set of standards that center equity and social justice in the design, construction, and use of new buildings.

Equity & Access

We will prioritize universal accessibility across the entire campus. Learning spaces will be designed so that teachers have what they need to accommodate a diversity of learning styles and approaches. And, the process of campus development will be tied to a set of standards that center equity and social justice in the design, construction, and use of new buildings.

Child-centered "Village" Feel

By repurposing buildings and thoughtfully adding new buildings and features, the campus master plan roots us in Bertschi's child-centered "village" feel, where students move freely and independently between indoor and outdoor spaces.

Learn more about the future of Bertschi's campus.




Bertschi created this fellowship out of a recognition of a need for more Black educators and to remove some of the barriers that they face. In partnership with the University of Washington, fellows enrolled in a teaching certification program work full time at Bertschi and receive $10,000 in tuition support for two years. Through the fellowship, Bertschi will also sponsor their student teaching, provide opportunities to observe other teachers, provide funding to participate in professional development, and offer mentoring and support throughout the program. In the 2022-23 school year, Bertschi launched a new program to support Black educators at independent schools. The Fellowship for Aspiring Black Educators includes a full-time teaching associate position and tuition assistance.

Since the development of Bertschi's fellowship, many other area independent schools have followed suit. We are now working in partnership with our peer schools to facilitate a supportive cohort of fellows.

This program is made possible by the generous support of donors. We are actively seeking support from the community to help underwrite future years of this program. If you are interested in supporting this fellowship through a donation, please contact Director of Institutional Advancement, Rose Bellini.

Tarren Sumler | Fellow & 5th Grade TA This school year, we are thrilled to welcome our first fellowship recipient, Tarren Sumler (he/him), who joins Bertschi as our 5th grade teaching associate. Tarren is currently pursuing a master's in teaching at the University of Washington.

To learn more about the fellowship, click here.


AFFINITY GROUPS This year, Bertschi expanded its affinity group programming. Affinity groups play an important role in building a more inclusive community by providing spaces to nurture positive identity development, empowerment, and foster a sense of belonging. Groups are able to connect as a community, engage in important discussions, plan events, and support each other. Affinity groups at Bertschi are created based on the needs of our families, faculty, and staff. We look forward to continuing to build and evolve these programs as our community grows.

Current Affinity Groups at Bertschi:

Antiracist Parent Education Group Asian@Bertschi Black@Bertschi Hispanic/Latinex Affinity Group Jewish Affinity Group LGBTQIA+ Affinity Group

COMMITTEE ON INCLUSIVE AND RESPONSIVE COMMUNITY Bertschi recently formed the Committee on Inclusive and Responsive Community (CIRC). The mission of CIRC is to give all parents, caregivers, and faculty and staff the ability to be involved in and shape community-wide DEI initiatives and events. This year, the Community Building subcommittee of CIRC has been hard at work supporting cultural and affinity group events, including the Black@Bertschi Cookout, a Hispanic & Latinex Heritage Celebration, BIPOC play dates, LGBTQIA+ story times. CIRC will continue to evolve and respond to the needs and desires of our community as we strive to create a culturally responsive and more inclusive school for all.



As equity-focused educators, we focus not just on exposing students to multiple perspectives but also raising students’ awareness of their role as change makers. Moving from compassion to action happens on the playground, in classroom projects, and in spontaneous teachable moments. Bertschi students learn that their voices matter and that their actions can make a difference. Our intentional curriculum promotes age and developmentally appropriate content at each grade level to engage in learning that supports our diversity, equity, and inclusion values. We believe that children thrive when they are given opportunities to see themselves reflected in the literature they read, the projects they create, and the problems they solve. Additionally, children increase their capacity for empathy and collaboration when they are offered a diversity of perspectives and ideas.

Curriculum Highlights

In music, students learn the history of jazz and its influence on American culture From pre-K to 5th grade, students study Black change makers and heroes in honor of Black History Month As part of their Seattle history project, 3rd graders study Seattle's civil rights movement and activists Students learn about holidays their classmates celebrate at home, including Holi and Diwali Students study the significance and traditions of Día de Muertos and create an ofenda Visiting artists from Gansango Music & Dance teach African dance to all students Classes participate in Lunar New Year activities and enjoy presentations from parents During 4th grade's "Portrait of a Whole Person" project, students study change makers and other important figures with disabilities 2nd grade wrote letters to Secretary Deb Haaland petitioning for federal recognition of the Duwamish Tribe In science, students study salmon and it's importance to Native peoples and our Pacific Northwest ecosystem




This year, Liz Karna, director of learning services, is participating in the NWAIS Emerging Leaders cohort. The NWAIS Emerging Leaders cohort is a year-long program designed to develop independent school leaders. Around 20 current and future school leaders from the northwest were selected last spring to participate in this year's program. Liz, along with her leadership cohort, will deepen skills in educational leadership, build meaningful relationships with seasoned school leaders, and practice making leadership decisions through case studies and discussion. Liz will meet with her cohort monthly and participate in two conferences to support her learning this school year.

Ciera Young, director of diversity, equity, and inclusion, is participating in the Leadership Tomorrow Flagship Program. Participants explore important regional issues and how they are interconnected, develop and practice strategies and tools to become more effective leaders, and expand your personal and professional networks. Key aspects of the program are analyzing the history and current impacts of racism and understanding that working with others to advance racial equity is central to leadership in our region.


Joey Tanaka, digital learning specialist, was a featured presenter and panelist at the Tech & Learning Leadership Roundtable, an event sponsored by LEGO® Education. Joey spoke on several Q & A topics focused on STEAM, coding and robotics. About 400-500 educators attended from across the globe including many from Europe and the Middle East. During the discussion, Joey was able to speak about Bertschi's robotics curriculum, and how the program is impactful and important for so many students who are cultivating a passion for coding and tech. Bertschi is a leader among elementary schools across the country for our comprehensive EdTech programming in grades 1 through 5.




Environmental Leadership: Annika Weber '15

From Bertschi School green team member to award-winning environmental activist! Annika was as 2022 recipient of the Brower Youth Awards in recognition of her efforts to organize and advocate for carbon neutrality as a co-founder of the youth-led Northwest School Carbon Neutrality Task Force.

Read more about the Brower Youth Awards and Annika's project

Naomi Fina '15 and Cal Phinney '16 started their Ultimate careers as Bertschi Bugaboos, and it recently took them all the way to a world championship. Both graduates of The Northwest School in Seattle, Naomi and Cal were on the U20 Junior Women's and Open teams who won gold at the World Junior Ultimate Championships this past summer in Poland. Bugaboos Win Gold: Naomi Fina '15 & Cal Phinney '16

Congratulations, Bugaboo alumni!

Alumni, we want to hear from you! Send your stories to: alumni@bertschi.org



Last year, Bertschi launched our very own spirit wear store. We're partnering with EST. 1619 to create shirts, hats, beanies, water bottles, tote bags, bandanas, and more! There is also Bugaboo merchandise for our current and former ultimate athletes!

Spirit wear ordering opens twice per school year, once each in the fall and spring.

Proceeds from the store each year go towards a small spirit wear item for every student.

Shop Spirit Wear

EST. 1619 is a Seattle-based Black-owned business focusing on bringing pride back to the Black community. The EST. 1619 brand encourages all people of the African diaspora to celebrate cultural differences while highlighting the beauty of blackness. Visit EST. 1619 11


JULY 2021 • JUNE 2022



July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Operating Revenue

Operating Expenses



July 1, 2020 • June 30, 2021

Each year, the Bertschi Fund ensures that the school can fulfill all programming needs including fully funded financial aid awards, generous professional development opportunities, excellent classroom materials, books, and equipment , and more. Through the Bertschi Fund, our community generously provides the tools and resources that help create a remarkable education for every child at our school. Thriving in the face of the unexpected Our collective investment continues to be a source of assurance that the school thrives in the face of the unexpected now and for generations to come. In 2021-22, the unexpected took the form of additional equipment and supplies necessary to operate the school programs full on campus amid a pandemic.

From supplying our students and faculty with PPE—including high-filtration masks and gloves—to improving existing ventilation and air purification in all classrooms, donations to the Bertschi Fund directly supported health and safety measures that kept our students and staff healthy, happy, and learning all year. With support from the Bertschi Fund, we invested in new audio visual equipment to turn the parking garage into a theater for our drama program, as well as recording and livestream equipment to bring grandparents and special friends on campus for virtual events.

Accolades for Jory Lum our facilities team

Daniel Hwang, an expert with the Seattle & King County Public Health program called COVID-19 Recovery Ventilation & Indoor Air Quality, visited our campus last spring for an assessment of our ventilation systems. He reported back: I have never gone to any school as well prepared as Bertschi. It was a shock to see adequate numbers of portable HEPA Air Cleaners, and HVAC systems with MERV 13 filters installed. Amazing active managerial control on the facilities department...Once again, I’ve never seen any facility as well prepared as this. Cheers to your amazing well thought out procedures and planning! Daniel D. Hwang, REHS/RS-IT



July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022





The Bertschi Fund is also supported by gifts from alumni, grandparents & special friends!

Rae Brown Abbott and Timothy Abbott Ama Ahovi Priyanka Sinha and Tahsin Ali Amy White and Lacey All Ann and Jonathan Altman Ana Paredes Anderson and Ian Anderson Lisa Anderson Roger and Lisa Anderson Anonymous (15) Kim and Scott Armstrong Addie Asbridge Heather and Lael Banner Pallavi Singhal and Kapil Bansal Lori Noto and Sean Barnes Teri and Mike Barnett Sherry and Larry Benaroya Rebecca Hoogs and Larry Benesh Tracy Bennett In honor of Brigitte Bertschi Brigitte Bertschi Jennifer and Eric Best Jennifer and Peter Bloch Garcia Julie Blystad In memory of Emily Alsop Jeni and John Bolen

Liat Uziyel-Bollag and Laurent Bollag Lisa and Vijay Boyapati Lora and Jason Brennan Gabie Brosas Victoria Damonte and Matias Brutti Angie and Joshua Burgin In honor of the Class of 2023 Lauren Crowley '88 and Carlos Marin Burgos

Jo and Michael Callahan Ying and Mike Carlson Leslie Brooks and Brandon Chang

Jennifer and Alen Chen La Verne and Jack Chen Vida Towne and Andrew Chiodi Jill and Christopher Corsi John Cousins Craig-Kaur Family Brenda I Cram Stephanie Cooper and Rachael Crickman In memory of Angela Crickman David Hahn and Gordana Crnković Abigail Cromwell Sasha Bartashnik and Christopher Crosbie Catherine and John Crowley Shannon Cruzen



Anna and Benjamin Graves Andrew and Hillary Greene Sarah Lawer and Frank Guanco Kristin Misner-Gutierrez and Carlos Gutierrez Aurora de la Cruz and Guy Hamilton Azimahana Amir and LeMoyne Harwell Derren Haskell Karen and John Held Jaclyn Shumate and Peter Held Charlie and Chris Hellstern Anne and John Herrmann Mia Santos Herrmann and Tim Herrmann Renee and Joshua Herst Andrea Hess Rose Bellini and James Holt Erin Lynch and Scott Hoogerwerf Julie and Eric Hopper Margarett Shnorhavorian and David Horne In honor of Alexandra Horne Margaret and Andrew Huang Susan Hurt Karl Jablonowski THANK YOU, DONORS!

July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Irena Cumbow Margot Kenly and Bill Cumming Anna and Thomas Cunningham Lilia Abaibourova and Kevin Davis Lizbeth Cayro and Dylan Dawson Jennifer DeRosa Brooke and Josh Dickson Hazel Grace Dircksen Mindy Dodobara '84 and Steven Dodobara Carol and Jerry Doerr

Samantha and Eric Doerr Lindsey and Josh Drake

Sara Driscoll Anne Echols

Erin Conor and Jamie Eckhardt Kimberly and David Eckstein Fowziya Edris Lisa Gouldy and David Edwards Heather and Scott Emery Ryan Rourke and Madeline Engel William English Carolyn Kennedy and Quentin Ertel Amy and Matt Eyler Iben Falconer '95 Tember and Louis Fasulo Desiree and Andrew Fawcett Katherine Feltner

Laura Fierce Dianne Filip

Madeleine Flournoy Eric and Jennie Fox Eric and Katrina Frank Aaron and Jenny Freshwater Tammy Hensel and Edward Gajcowski Mike and Jennifer Gardner

Wes and Jason Geffner Shannon and Peter Getty

In honor of Teri Barnett and her contributions to Bertschi School Jeanie Zwick and Robert Glesne Kate and David Goodman Vivien Wang Gossard and Stone Gossard



Miya and Dwayne McClain Alisa Ple-Plakon and Kevin McCulloch Marisa and Nicholas McFarland Lindall McIntyre Adam and Aimee McNae Donna Soleman and Ryan McNamara Geraldine Rodriguez and Nathan Merseth Dorothy Meyer Erin and Stewart Meyer Rocio and Brandon Meyers Jessie Monds and Nate Milner Zoehana Minkove '92 and Jordan Minkove Raven and Russell Morgan Shannon O'Brien and David Morris Lipika and Raja Mukerji Melinda Williams and Mark Murray Hilary and Andrew Myerberg Sonya Schneider and Stuart Nagae THANK YOU, DONORS!

July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Terry and Buzz James In honor of Gigi James Emily Trenkner-Jones and Jason Jones Carol Joneschild Dustin Gilbert and Elizabeth Joneschild Jessie Kaarbo Leslie and James Kanter Van Kantner Liz Karna

Lara Wagner and Tom Keane Heather and Tiffany Kelly-Gray

Sibyl Frankenburg and Steve Kessel Jennifer and Christopher Khawand Bill and Lourdes Kilbourn In honor of our granddaughter Eva Trister Megan and Jamie King Midori Kishan Chance Koehnen Keiko Koizumi

Lian and Itay Neeman ona and Lee Newkirk Jacqueline and Jerry Newman

Lauren and Gregory Kriegler Motomi and Kevin Kudo-King Gokhan Kutlu Tina La Plant Danna and Trey Lamont Matthew Lang Amy Shelton and Greg Laughlin Celeste and Tim Lenihan Rosemary and Kael Lewis YB Choi and Jessica Lim Marsha Linehan In honor of Catalina Merseth Kathyryn Oliver and Yince Loh Sarah and Richard Lord Tina and Jory Lum Jessica and John Macintyre Jennifer Creegan and Joslyn Main Sandy and Benjamin Margoles Kristina Hotz and Matt Markl '90 Catherine and Dallas Martinez Annabelle and Michael Mathieu Megan and Christopher Maxwell Laura and Sean McCann




July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Ariel Perkins and Melvin O'Brien In memory of Marc A. West Karen and James O'Brien Becca and Cameron Ochiltree Lou Ann and Bob Ochiltree Bess and Joe Oleksiak Zoë Otis Regina Pae Rebecca Bridge and Mike Pantoliano Alexa McNae and Neal Paragas Meera and Sujal Patel Angela and Jason Patrao Pamela Lopez and Maxwell Perret In honor of Maxwell Perret Kurt and Suzanne Peterson Sarah and Stuart Pohl

Theresa and Kris Shaw Lisa Chew and Dean Shibata Susan Sidman Stacie and Karl Siebrecht

Marcia Joslyn Sill Gay Hartwell Sills

In honor of Luca Myerberg Adri Silver '86 and Randy Silver

Kristin and Kevin Silverman Patti and Irwin Silverman Robin Romanovich and Amanda Silver Jessica Feldman and Daniel Simon Divya Krishnan and Krishnan Srinivasan Jyotsna Natarajan and Siddharth Sriram Bernadette Bulacan Starin and Robert Starin Liz Bolen and Joel Sternbach Maddy Stevens Abigail Gunderson and Dustin Stoddart Malim Park and Charles Stoner Jed Stremel Sarah and Michael Sung Claire Sutherland Joey Tanaka Anna-Rita Wong and Edin Terzo In memory of Hidajeta Terzo

Lara Hirschfield and Andy Pollack Abha Khanna and Adam Porsch Niamh O'Connell and Wyatt Powell Harini Saladi and Renganathan Ramamoorthy Mia Rapier Reece Family Chris Keating and Beth Ann Reimel Julie Florida and Anthony Repanich Alison Duffy and Robert Rhee Keri and George Rhodes Kate and Matt Riley Sandra Faucett and Cedric Ross Rie Sumitani and Sebastian Ruehlmann Pilar and David Salazar Jennifer Schlobohm In honor of the heroic development team! Yuko and Mike Schmitt Linda Arland and Greg Schoch Marisa and Darren Schoen Casey and Allison Schuchart Brenda Schultz Bart and Joshua Scott In honor of students who can't afford private education Tim Seed Samuel Shapiro '00

Eileen Sun and Lucas Thompson Sarah Bond and Cory Toedebusch

Gillian and Rob Toledo Abbe and Erik Tolzmann Desiree and Andrew Trister Gerrie Hashisaki and Frank Tubridy Savitha Swaminathan and Sharath Udupa Heather Battjes and Alejandro Ulloa Mark Vadon Mattie Iverson Vadon The VanAntwerp family Sherbeam Wright and Pueng Vongs In memory of Maxine Holmes

Iris and Ted Wagner The Waldie Family Chris and Kari Walker Jeanne Walker



July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Matching Gifts

Matthew and Teniká Walker In honor of Carol Versey & Timothy Walker, the best grandparents on the planet Karen Spelliscy and Andrew Wang Heather and James Weimann Xiomara Romero and Adam Weintraub '84 Elizabeth and Daniel Weiskopf Ching Cheung and Steven Weyer Holly Huang-White and Peter White

Adobe AmazonSmile

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Bill and Melinda Gates Investments Coinstar GitHub Google Indeed Microsoft Nordstrom Oracle Peloton Riley and Nancy Pleas Family Foundation

Sara and Ryan Wiita Elizabeth Williams Julie Williams Sam Williamson Nick Wilson Eric West and Jeff Wise Morrow Woods Stacey and Stephen Worth Michelle Wotherspoon Kalina and Mike Wu Shannon Yergan Ariel Zaslav

Starbucks T-Mobile Zillow





July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022

Endowment Contributors July 1, 2021 • June 30, 2022


Brigitte Bertschi Financial Aid Endowment

Anonymous Van Kantner

Sarah M. Hughes Memorial Endowment


General Endowment


Professional Development Endowment


Faculty Compensation Endowment


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Melinda Williams | President Sean McCann | Vice President Erik Tolzmann | Treasurer Celeste Macapia | Secretary BOARD OF TRUSTEES 2021-2022

Jenn Creegan Jennie Fox Leslie Kanter Tiffany Kelly-Gray Keiko Koizumi Sandy Margoles Dwayne McClain Raven Morgan

David Morris Raja Mukerji Stuart Nagae Becca Ochiltree Sujal Patel Gerladine Rodriguez Ryan Rourke Bernadette Bulacan Starin Gillian Toledo Liat Uziyel-Bollag

Lara Wagner Chris Walker

Michael Sung | Parent Council President Mia Santos Herrmann | Faculty Representative Teri Barnett | Interim Head of School




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