This year the International Montessori School is celebrating a significant milestone – 20 years! The journey from Big Idea to start a school for our own children to today’s reality of serving a community of almost 1,000 children has been one which would not have been possible without the support of our families.
From our inception in 2002, IMS has always balanced an annual budget from tuition and Capital Plan contributions without any financial government support – through SARS in our first year, floods, campus moves and many other challenges – while providing the highest quality Montessori education to our children over many years. It was only in 2013 that IMS was awarded the Stanley Campus by the government, which then required our entire capital reserve to renovate!
With the establishment of the Annual Fund, we are formalising the giving that has become traditional in each of our last 20 years. Our families have rallied around the needs of IMS, from establishing our first library collection, to sponsoring development of the Arts and Sport at IMS, to supporting teachers’ and faculty leaders’ Wish List & Wishing Well items.
Our target is to raise $3 million this year, with $1 million each year thereafter, to give every IMS child their own unique IMS experience and assure the future of IMS. Your gifts also support annual operations in unforeseen times of need – which we experienced in our first year with SARS, and our last two years with COVID-19 – and ensure the next 20 years are full of opportunity for the children of IMS!
We regularly upgrade our campuses to make sure the environments are beautiful and well-resourced. Some of the planned works have been delayed due to COVID, and so we have been catching up since this summer. Renovations needed amount to $1.2 million, and include new wooden flooring in the Mid-Levels classrooms, a facelift for our South Horizons campus, Wifi upgrade in Stanley, new Art Room Furniture, and A/C upgrade and some touchups in Aldrich Bay. Please support us!
Tuition covers most of the basic needs of any school, but there are always many items in the Wishing Well & Teachers’ Wish Lists to supplement academic and co-curricular programme development (HK$700,000 annually). Help make the IMS libraries, enrichment programmes in the Arts, music, maker-space, science, sport, and technology possible for our children, and allow our Faculty to create a unique experience with your child in mind. 2019 was the last ARTStravaganza, and parents funded 30 of the 32 items!
The IMS development team has created a bespoke series of readers in Chinese and English for our young learners! Written by our own teachers, with illustrations depicting daily IMS student life, these books are designed to elevate each child’s reading experience. In addition, we are adding Chinese Character screens to each Casa dei Bambini classroom to enhance the children in creating their own Chinese compositions and sentences. We are looking for HK$150,000 to fund these meaningful language initiatives!
To maximize the children’s oral language learning, IMS has sourced see-through masks for the teachers. Your support is needed to ensure we can continue this practice throughout this year to enhance our children’s language learning during these unusual times. In addition, IMS will maintain the Seesaw platform to ensure we can seamlessly transition to home learning if required. We also plan to continue applying the Raze anti-bacterial coating to our facilities regularly to safeguard the health of our community. These extra costs amount to HK$420,000.
Each year IMS helps families who are in need of additional, often sudden, financial support so that IMS families can continue on at IMS (HK$1 million). Over the past two years, the COVID impact has meant we have seen this need dramatically increase, and we seek your support in helping us continue this assistance to our community.
The safety of each child is of paramount importance to every person in our community, and this year, we are asking for HK$40,000 funding to invest in resources to facilitate Child Protection Training for our entire adult community including faculty, IMS supporting staff and parent volunteers.
From our inception, IMS has supported faculty to attend AMI training to gain Montessori teaching credentials and expertise. While this programme started small and mainly targeted Chinese faculty, it has now grown to a substantial annual investment of HK$325,000 as our faculty has grown in size, training is offered in more languages and countries (notably China), and IMS seeks to cultivate and retain the best Montessori teachers from around the world.
NEW! It is our dream to inspire some of our IMS alumni who are graduating from uni to pursue a career in Montessori education! We are looking for HK$100,000 to kick start this initiative, and allow us to support the first qualified IMS alumni candidate to gain their AMI teaching credential, and then return to teach the next generation of IMS children! The goal is to raise ongoing funds to sponsor future IMS alumni toward this pursuit.
NEW! Entrepreneurship and Real Life Business Operation are integral and unique elements of the Montessori Upper Elementary experience, and as our students look towards expanding beyond their existing paper-making and gardening businesses, we wish to raise HK$100,000 annually to propel and support these initiatives. These funds will be complemented with real life guidance and sharing by entrepreneurs from our own parent community and beyond!
NEW! To plan for our greener future, we are announcing a brand new IMS Sustainability Initiative, which will fund continuing environmental work for the students, including composting & recycling projects, an energy audit, and allow for green upgrades at each campus over the coming years. We target raising HK$300,000+ for these initiatives, and seek your support to help us make each IMS child a Steward for Sustainability.
We invite you to participate and become an IMS Annual Fund’s Founding Family. Any amount you can share will bring us closer to our goal of HK$3 million. We will have multiple opportunities this year to participate and plenty of fun ways to contribute!
• Donors will be listed on our website, which will be updated each month.
• Named Stanley Bench: Gift of HK$300,000+
• All donations over $100 are tax deductible
With each donation we received from you, we become all that much closer to our goal. Thank you for making a difference through your compassion and generosity.
Our very first Fundraiser dinner was held in the Viceroy Restaurant in Wan Chai in October 2003, when we returned for the 2003-4 school year after SARS.
There was a break of a few years, and then the annual gala ARTStravaganza Fundraiser began in one of our PTA Board member’s homes. One of our Founding Parents was the MC, and the school sold lovely artwork done by the children, as well as photos of the children at work taken by another talented IMS parent!
The IMS community has been involved in giving each year since: we have been blessed with a significant donation towards the special items that make each child’s Montessori experience unique, which has grown to over HK$1 million raised in our annual gala!
Unfortunately, over the past two years, our 2020 Speakeasy had to be cancelled due to COVID-19, and the 2021 “do-over” wasn’t possible either. IMS parents have still given in countless ways: with your valuable time, as well contributing over HK$1.3 million to our Covid Emergency Fund to enhance safety measures, and sponsor voluntary staff testing that allowed our children to return to school!
We would like to thank our IMS community for your generosity over the years. To better plan for the future, we are creating the IMS Annual Fund, with a target of raising $3 million this milestone year, which will help ensure IMS can continue to provide its quality Montessori experience with the highest qualified staff in a safe and beautiful environment for many years to come.