An exciting future

January 2019

Dear TMS Families,

Happy New Year and I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. My goal is to reach out to our community at times to update you on the work of The Montessori School’s Board of Trustees. We are fortunate to have such a dedicated group of individuals who give their time and talents to support our school.

As you may know, our primary functions remain overseeing and supporting the Head of School and ensuring the short- and long-term fiscal health and sustainability of our school. In addition, we are charged with reviewing the school’s mission, strategic vision and facilities to ensure relevance in the context of our current marketplace. As with each year, our work also includes partnering with Laurie Stulb and her administrative team in the following areas:

  1. Develop and implement future approaches toward cost containment, tuition increase minimization, building our contingency, financial aid, endowment, and planning concretely for a range of possible future financial challenges;
  2. Balance the budget to maximize efficiency while offering the programs necessary to fulfill our mission;
  3. Review, approve and participate in fundraising efforts;
  4. Explore new and enhanced opportunities for auxiliary income;
  5. Engage in trustee professional development to assist the administration in fulfilling the current action plan;
  6. Serve as key advocates for the school by gaining greater knowledge into the school’s curriculum development, faculty and administrator selection, compensation, retention, and student growth and development.

Both in regular Board Committee meetings and full meetings of the Board of Trustees, we will move these goals forward while still taking care to assist in any way needed with the challenges facing schools in the 21st century. If you’d like to learn more about the Board or are interested in potentially volunteering your own expertise to support our school, please reach out to me ( or any member of the Board. View the list of current 2018-19 TMS Trustees.

I’m very excited to announce our board is welcoming two new trustees. Kimberly Burke and Marjorie Horton were inducted as the class of 2018 to bring their talents to further our mission at TMS. Additionally, please help me extend appreciation to two trustees that have resigned last term for personal reasons, Elizabeth Sawyer and Diana Shi.

Kimberly Burke, a current parent, lawyer, and experienced trustee brings invaluable insights from the governance arena. Kim currently serves as Vice President, Deputy General Counsel for Novocure. Kim’s deep background in company compliance and corporate governance and Board matters, and significant leadership experiences including serving as Interim CEO in 2014 will help the board recruit and develop new trustees for board leadership succession needed to advance our mission. Kim also brings a critical parent voice to the board having experienced TMS through the eyes of her child, Betty, an Upper El student.

Marjorie Horton, an administrator, teacher and adjunct lecturer with experience in Montessori, has a long standing career in education particularly in early childhood and early intervention education programs, and is currently the Director of the Montessori Teacher Education Program at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia. Marj has broad and deep experience with Montessori education serving many communities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey including founding a Montessori Teacher’s Institute in Atlanta, GA. Marj’s love for The Montessori School also dates back to when her grandchildren were students at our school. Marj’s wisdom of many years of work in the Montessori community is an invaluable addition to the board, as she advises in areas of TMS’s program and ways to engage resources across our region to advance TMS’s mission.

Thank you for your continued trust in TMS to educate your children and for all you do to support our mission.

Kind regards,

Karen Walsh

Karen Walsh, Board Chair