Archive for the ‘Fundraising’ Category

Auction 2014

Auction 2014Magic+Mischief in Black+White 

Friday, March 7, 2014

Villa Academy’s Auction and Masquerade Ball
will be held in the Spanish Ballroom at the beautiful Fairmont Olympic Hotel

This will be a party to remember…

Put on your black or white cocktail attire and don a mask

Cocktails, incredible auction items, elegant food, and fabulous Fund-A-Need

Stay for a rocking after-party and delicious treats in the Spanish Foyer

The photo booth is back by popular demand

The Fairmont Olympic is extending a deeply discounted room rate
to all Villa parents, so plan to stay the night 


Mark your calendars for March 7. Don’t miss this extraordinary event!

GiveBIG for Villa Academy on May 15!

Grow your gift to Villa Academy by participating with The Seattle Foundation on May 15 in their third annual GiveBIG – a one-day, online charitable giving event.  Each credit card donation made to Villa Academy via the Seattle Foundation website between midnight and midnight (Pacific Daylight Time) 
on Wednesday, May 15, 2013, will be stretched further thanks to The Seattle Foundation and GiveBIG sponsors, who will match a share of every contribution. Please plan to donate on May 15!


A Great Gatsby Auction: Update from Head of School

Dear Friends,

Last Saturday night’s Auction, held at Seattle’s historic Arctic Club, had a Great Gatsby theme – and it certainly lived up to the hype! The guys in their black ties and the dolls in their flapper dresses and cloche hats had a roaring good time – all to benefit VIlla Academy. Auction 2013 was one of the most successful Villa Auctions in recent memory and, on behalf of my colleagues on the faculty and staff,



Thanks to all who attended, sponsored, contributed, or procured auction items and worked on this great event! Many thanks go especially to Jennifer Roberts, our Auction Chair (and flapper-extraordinaire), and her “army” of volunteers that put in hundreds of hours over the last year to make the Auction a tremendous success. I offer a special thank you, also, to my colleague, Marcie Cheung, our Development Events Coordinator, for all that she did to make this event special…Well Done, All!

Although we’re still counting all the coins, it appears that we’ve grossed over $340,000 for Villa Academy – including over $77,000 toward our School Security Fund-A-Need with additional contributions still being received and processed.  For those who’d still like to support the Fund-A-Need, you can do so at: Fund-A-Need 2013.

Finally, if you’d like to see proof that the Villa Auction 2013 was a “blast,” checkout these pictures from the photo booth: Auction 2013.  If you’d like a copy of one or more pictures from the photo booth, just “click” here: Photo-Booth – Auction 2013.

What a great event…Thanks everyone!


John K. Milroy

Head of School

Online Auction Open! Let the Bidding Begin!

The Great Gatsby Online Auction is now open. The auction will run from 10AM on February 20, 2013 to 10PM February 27, 2013. Auction items range from exotic vacation getaways to donated items guaranteed to delight and surprise. The online auction is open to anyone, so share this with your friends, family, community.

Let the bidding begin!









Coins for a Cause

The Third Trimester Community Service Project for the Preschool classes has focused in the past several years on helping a Guatemalan child in need of medical care which is financially beyond the reach of the family.

This year the money raised will help Levi, a 3-month old boy who is severely malnourished and who was born with multiple deformities of his hands and feet.The money raised will pay for intensive nutritional therapy to help him gain strength, medications to treat infections, and surgery to help him gain full use of his hands and feet.

The project is being introduced to the Preschool children today, Ash Wednesday, February 13.  Each child in the Preschool is invited to collect coins to bring to school. Our collection will run from February 13 – March 28. This project occurs during the season of Lent because of its core tenet of service to others.
Children are encouraged to raise the money by doing extra jobs or chores around the house.  Any amount raised will be a huge benefit to this little boy.

Update from the Head of School


December 7, 2012


Dear Friends,

Today I met with the Villa Parent Association (VPA) and presented an overview of a comprehensive school improvement plan, associated with our Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools (PNAIS) re-accreditation process that will commence with the 2013-2014 academic year.  As an accredited school, Villa Academy undergoes a peer review process on a seven-year cycle, with our next evaluation scheduled for the 2014 – 2015 academic year.

PNAIS accreditation is an inclusive, continuing process that involves reflection, rigor and forethought to assist each member school to clarify and live its own vision, mission and values. The process promotes quality standards without standardization in a way that supports both school independence and educational quality in a collegial environment of peer review.

PNAIS schools voluntarily join the Association and, in so doing, commit to the core value of continuous school improvement with the goal of maintaining accreditation through compliance with the Association’s Standards and Indicators. PNAIS accreditation is an elective and thorough process that ensures that schools have the leadership, resources, organization, staffing and structures in place to allow for continual improvement that will sustain schools and ensure a quality educational program over time.

At Villa Academy, the most recent  on-going school improvement process generated from our 2007 accreditation report, but began in earnest during the 2010 – 2011 academic year under the leadership of Mrs. Jody Elsner, Villa’s Lower School Director who was, at that time, Villa’s Interim-Head of School.  During that year, Mrs. Elsner and the Villa faculty and staff began studying the components and implications of a “21st century education” at Wednesday afternoon faculty/staff meetings and through outside reading and research.

There are numerous definitions of “21st century education/21st century skills,” but a particularly useful and succinct definition comes from Mr. Barnett Berry, founder and chief executive officer of the Center for Teaching Quality:

Twenty-first-century learning means that students master content while producing, synthesizing and evaluating information from a wide variety of subjects and sources with an understanding of and respect for diverse cultures. Students demonstrate the three Rs but also the three Cs: creativity, communication and collaboration. They demonstrate digital literacy as well as civic responsibility. Powerful learning of this nature demands well-prepared teachers who draw on advances in cognitive science and are strategically organized in teams, in and out of cyberspace.”

The research, review and discussion of “21st century education/skills” at Villa Academy continues and includes both formal and informal conversations centered on the application of new instructional techniques and curricular standards, while ever mindful of our Mission as a Catholic independent school dedicated to excellence in the education of the whole child and guided by the Cabrinian tradition of educating compassionate hearts and confident minds.

This self-assessment and professional development process, along with our review of educational “best practices,” serves as one foundational leg of a school improvement process.

The second foundational leg of Villa’s school improvement process is the formal PNAIS self-study, which will be conducted during the 2013 – 2014 academic year. The self-study is an inclusive, collaborative and reflective process involving the Head of School, the Board, faculty, staff, parents, students, alumni and others who have an interest in the school and its future. It provides the background information and analysis upon which a peer review team will rely during their visit to Villa Academy in the 2014 – 2015 academic year.

The self-study process, followed by a peer review report, looks for congruence between a school’s mission and its programs and practices, and starts with a review of the school’s mission statement. The process considers the school’s strengths, weaknesses, priorities and plans and should identify any “gaps” as well as articulate aspirations (programs and facilities) for school improvement.  A peer review team will review the self-study and, following a three-day visit to the school, provide an additional written report to the Head of School offering team observations and highlighting areas of commendation, recommendations and conditions that the school must satisfy in order to maintain accreditation.

Considering the best practices/standards of a 21st century education, the findings of our self-study and the report from a peer-review accreditation visit, a new school improvement plan (Visioning Villa – 2017) will be developed and pursued in the years ahead.  In this improvement plan I hope to draw on all of the sundry skills and significant talents of the Villa community and will rely on its collective wisdom to make Villa Academy all that it can be – sooner rather than later!  This school improvement plan may suggest that the Villa Academy Board of Trustees consider a capital campaign in the next couple of years to support our improvement goals, to further Villa’s progress and to fully meet its Mission and Vision.  This is an option that has been occasionally discussed at meetings of the Board of Trustees over the last eighteen months, though no decision has yet been made.

This graphic was presented to the VPA to help illustrate this process:


The next few years at Villa Academy will be exciting – and pivotal.  I’m enthusiastic about our future and our potential and am convinced that the best is yet to come!

Stay tuned!



John K. Milroy

Head of School

Fall Book Fair Thank You

Parents, Staff, Faculty and Students,

The Fall Book Fair, which we conducted in coordination with the University Book Store, was a huge success! Your purchases earned approximately $2000 for the purchase of books for the Villa Library.   We hope you enjoy the books you purchased as much as our students will enjoy the new books we purchase for the library with the book fair proceeds.   We are also especially thankful for the many books that were purchased for the library from our wish list. Our children will enjoy a variety of new books for years to come, due to your generosity.

Many thanks are offered to our wonderful volunteers!  These parents helped the students with book selection, estimating the cost of purchases, counting money and making change. A special “thank you” goes to the following volunteers: Wendy Gibbons, Amy Fouke, Suzanne Moreau, Nina Stuyt, Ann Selberg, Staci Foster, Kelli Smith-Bailey, Jennifer Porter, and Michael Guadagno.

Special events like the Book Fair could not happen without Villa’s Facilities Department personnel.  We truly appreciate the “behind-the-scenes” efforts, including putting up banners, setting up tables, and helping to load and unload books.

The staff and management at University Book Store were extremely supportive and knowledgeable and the book selection was perfect for Villa’s clientele. It is always a pleasure partnering with an independent bookstore for this event.  When you are in the U District, stop by their store on the Avenue, and enjoy the incredible selection and customer service.

Again, many thanks to all the Villa families, friends, staff and faculty who contributed to the success of the Fall Book Fair!

Karen Strand

Marta Franzen