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EHCA Board Updates

May 23, 2020

 

It was a blessing to see so many of you drive by on Thursday. It brought us such joy to see each smiling face and your words of support and encouragement warmed our hearts. 

Many of you inquired about next year and what it will look like as a result of this pandemic.  The first thing we want you to hear about next year is that the board and administration are excited to see what God has in store for EHCA. EHCA is His school. We are so grateful for how He has led this ministry over the years and trust in His guidance for the future no matter what changes occur.  Please know that we fully intend to physically return to school in the fall. With that said, we are aware that school and life, in general, may look different for all of us. We are keeping a close eye on the data that comes with reopening, and we continue to evaluate the many guidelines and recommendations set forth by local and federal health agencies. We realize this information serves as a resource, and assure you that we understand it is our responsibility to ensure that we make decisions that are in the best interest of our student body. In doing so, we will take into consideration their health, safety, educational, spiritual, and social needs. 

Please know we appreciate your prayers for wisdom and guidance as we continue to develop a plan for our return. This year took an unexpected turn for us, but not for God.  We are confident we will continue to navigate this season surrounded by His grace and mercy.  We believe we are poised for an incredible 2020-2021 school year with a remarkable faculty and staff excited to serve your family and invest in your children’s lives. We will continue to provide information and updates throughout the summer, but please feel free to call or send an email if you have any questions.  We love you all and truly look forward to being together again in the fall. Thank you once more for your support, encouragement, and faithful prayers.  

In Him,

EHCA Board and Administrative Team

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May 5, 2020

 

Dear EHCA Families,

#GivingTuesdayNow is a new global day of giving and unity that will take place today, May 5, 2020 – in addition to the regularly scheduled Dec. 1, 2020 #GivingTuesday – as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19.  This is an opportunity to come together as a global community to support nonprofits around the world.  

Last spring EHCA established a financial aid fund to assist families with financial needs to attend EHCA.  Our vision is that money would not be a barrier for any family to attend EHCA and this fund is the way we can make that a reality.  Thanks to the generous support of our community, we were able to provide financial assistance to all the families who applied and qualified for aid.  We anticipate the economic impact from this pandemic will make the need for financial assistance greater than ever this coming school year.

 Please join us on Giving Tuesday Now by supporting EHCA or another nonprofit in the area.  Your donations make a difference.

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March 31, 2020

 

Dear EHCA Families,

We are so proud of our teachers for their amazing effort as we launched our Distance Learning with such little notice.  These individuals have risen to the challenge and gone beyond comfort levels to make this transition successful.  Our teachers continue developing and refining weekly plans which support our academic objectives at each grade level.  Our goal is for this learning experience to be meaningful, enjoyable and challenging but manageable.  Your feedback is essential in helping us achieve that goal, so thank you for responding to the survey and please continue to let us know how you are doing.  We are reviewing all of the feedback as well as other suggestions that have been provided and will make adjustments and improvements to our distance learning format as we move forward. 

The board and administration met on 3/27/20 and made some decisions regarding the tuition for our early education program.  These tuition changes are for April and May tuition and are for early education tuitions only.  Mrs. Gergen explained the reason for this change in her 3/27/20 email to Early Education Families.  Our early education teachers continue delivering instruction regarding phonological awareness, number sense, and much more.  However, many other early childhood standards require frequent interaction with other children and socialization.  These elements cannot be replicated in a virtual forum.  In addition, the preschool rates include before and after school childcare which is another element that cannot be replicated virtually.

As many of you are aware, EHCA has had challenges concerning the school’s finances for the last few years.  God has been faithful to meet our needs.  As the board approached our financial situation these past two weeks we have praised Him once again for how He prepared us for this moment.  EHCA will continue to pay all of our staff (administrators, office staff, teachers, teaching assistants, playground assistants and Discovery Club workers) for the remainder of the school year.  

Some families have questions regarding the change in our finances for the next two months and whether any resulting savings could be passed on to our families.  Our major expenses such as payroll, cleaning, insurance, and management systems have not changed.  These categories account for 85% of our expenses in our 2019-2020 Operating Budget.  An additional 10% of our budget consists of expenses which have been fully paid and will not be refunded (curriculum, educational membership and association fees, and subscriptions) or monthly expenses which continue unchanged (telephone bill and equipment leases).  We are a ministry of Eastern Hills Baptist Church and they pay the remaining utility bills and costs for the facility so any decreased charges based on the building closure do not impact us financially.  It is true some minor expenses such as substitute salary and classroom expenses have been eliminated when we shifted to an online platform.  Those savings are offset with the reduction in our tuition income due to the change in Early Education rates for April and May.  Our only other income apart from tuition is from Discovery Club charges so we will see a drop in revenue there as well.   

We have asked families to email the board if they are experiencing financial difficulty so we can work with them to develop a plan for this difficult time.  We have also made a COVID-19 Tuition Assistance link available on our website for our families who remain unaffected and feel led to bless other EHCA families with a financial donation towards tuition fees.  This link can be found under the Support EHCA/Donate Now tabs.  

Finally, we would like to thank you again for your love and dedication to EHCA.  Thank you for supporting our teachers, and administrators as we navigate these uncertain circumstances together.  We are so very grateful for our EHCA family.  It is a blessing to know that you are praying for our school and for each other.  

In Him,

EHCA Board

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March 30, 2020 

 

Dear EHCA Early Education Families,

The board and administration met 3/27/20 and made some decisions regarding the tuition for our early education programs.

As Mrs. Gergen stated in her email Friday, our early education teachers are prepared to continue delivering instruction regarding phonological awareness, number sense, and much more. However, many other early childhood standards require frequent interaction with other children and socialization. These elements cannot be replicated in a virtual forum. We are also aware our preschool rates include before and after school childcare. This is another element that cannot be replicated virtually.

Due to these changes taking place with our early education program, the board has set distance learning rates for the preschool program and pre-K program for April and May.  Our new distance learning rates align with the lowest tuition fee category for each program.  The preschool distance learning rate for April and May is $170 per month and the pre-K distance learning rate is $235 per month.

God has been faithful to meet our needs throughout the years.  As the board approached our financial situation these past 2 weeks we have praised Him once again for how He prepared us for this moment.  EHCA will continue to pay all of our staff (administrators, office staff, teachers, teaching assistants, playground assistants and Discovery Club workers) for the remainder of the school year.  Some families have asked questions regarding the change in our finances for the next two months.  Our major expenses such as payroll, cleaning, insurance, and management systems have not changed.  Other expenses such as Terra Nova testing packages and preparations, annual education association fees, subscriptions, and library management software are expenses which have been paid and will not be refunded.  Some minor expenses such as substitute salary and classroom expenses have been eliminated as we shifted to online education.  Our only other income besides tuition is from Discovery Club charges so April and May Discovery Club income stopped with its closure.

We will be changing the rates in FACTS to the new set distance learning rates for all of our preschool and pre-K students this coming week.

If you paid in full and are due a refund then please email the board and we will work out the specifics for your refund. 

If you choose to disenroll, we will currently waive the 2-week written notice requirement.  Please email the board prior to April 1st.

If you want to continue with the preschool or pre-K program but are experiencing financial difficulty then please email the board so we can develop a plan for this difficult time.

If your family remains unaffected and you wish to bless other EHCA families with a financial donation towards tuition fees, please utilize the COVID-19 Tuition Assistance link on our web page (under Support EHCA/Donate Now tabs). 

Finally, we would like to thank you for the support and encouragement you have extended to our teachers and administrators during the past two weeks.  Your thoughtfulness and consideration during this time have been such a boost to all of us.  We always say we believe our educators and employees are some of the best in Albuquerque.  Your actions these past weeks would indicate our families are some of the best in Albuquerque as well.  Please continue with us in praying for our school, our community, and our nation. 

In Him,

EHCA Board

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March 12, 2020

 

Dear EHCA Family,

The board and administration have been in constant communication today as we continued to monitor guidelines and measures in relation to the COVID-19 virus.  The situation is rapidly evolving and the update we had intended to provide was outdated before it could be sent.  

Tonight Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham, the New Mexico Public Education Department, and the New Mexico Department of Health announced that all New Mexico public schools will close for three weeks beginning Monday, March 16, in response to the ongoing crisis.  In a news release announcing the closure, Public Education Department Secretary Ryan Stewart described the decision as "a proactive measure to limit the potential community spread of COVID-19.  New Mexico is going to be proactive and do everything we can to prevent the potential spread of the virus."  According to the state, school tentatively will open again on April 6.  

EHCA has always followed Albuquerque Public School weather related closures in order to keep our families safe.  In light of this developing public health concern and out of an abundance of caution, the board and administration have agreed that we will follow the state’s guidance.  Leading up to spring break, in-person classes at EHCA from March 16 to March 27 will be cancelled.  We will have class tomorrow, March 13.  This is not an extension of spring break and students will need to continue learning at home.  Meetings will be taking place tomorrow regarding exactly what that will look like for our student body.  Please be patient with us as we work out these details.  You will receive further information from us soon regarding learning at home. 

Thank you for your ongoing understanding in light of this developing public health concern.  Please do not hesitate to reach out to our administrators if you have any questions or concerns. 

We remain thankful that God is in control and appreciate your prayers as we continue to make decisions to best meet the needs of our students and families.

In Him,

EHCA Board and Administrative Team