Back-to-School 2020

​Show Shaker Students Some TLC: Tech 2 Learn & Connect


Another Shaker school year is right around the corner, and the Foundation is eager to welcome back our students, staff, and teachers for their first day of school this coming Monday, August 31!

When it became clear that students and teachers would need to start this school year in a remote learning mode for safety, the Foundation launched the TLC “Tech 2 Learn & Connect” campaign to meet the particular needs of elementary students. As identified by Shaker teachers, those needs include providing all K-6 students with high-quality headsets with microphones and new computer mice that are compatible with the Chromebooks issued by the District.

Says Onaway principal Eric Forman,”These headsets will be a game-changer! They allow students to communicate more easily and to be heard by their teachers and classmates as clearly as possible in a remote setting, which will really improve student engagement.” TLC funds will also be used to purchase magnetic counting boards and letter sets for PreK students, for Read/Write software that helps students at all grade levels with reading fluency, and for additional resources to spark creativity in music and art specials.

The fundraising goal to cover the cost of these items is $40,000. We are fortunate to have two anonymous donors who have pledged to match the first $15,000 in contributions, dollar for dollar. To help give Shaker students the best possible learning experience this school year, please consider a tax-deductible donation to the TLC Fund. As always, thank you for supporting our students’ success!

Planning Underway for New Raider Athletic Center

proposed athletic center

The Shaker Heights City School District, in partnership with the Shaker Schools Foundation, has committed to supporting the development of a new Raider Athletic Center and dedicated wrestling room that will greatly enhance fitness programming for our students. While COVID-19 has impacted students’ ability to compete in athletics in recent months, we know that this investment in our students’ health and fitness will pay dividends long into the future!

Benefits of the project include:

  • The number of students who can work on strength training and conditioning at one time will increase from the current capacity of 40 to 70, once it is safe to do so.
  • The new wrestling room, which will be located in the former multipurpose room, will be a dedicated space that will be safer, more sanitary and non-disruptive to other activities.
  • The Raider Athletic Center will be accessible to all high school students, as well as for physical education and weight training courses, and all of our athletic teams.

Please visit our website for more details and proposed schematics, or to make a tax-deductible donation in support of the New Raider Athletic Center. Go, Mighty Raiders!

Your gift, along with those from other parents, alumni, and friends, can help provide Shaker students with these important resources for athletics and life-long fitness. Thank you for your consideration!

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Congratulations to the 2020 Shaker Schools Hall of Fame Inductees!

The newest class of the Shaker Schools Alumni Hall of Fame includes eight Shaker graduates who have made significant contributions to the fields of law and justice, entertainment, architecture, the fine and performing arts, and social justice.

The 2020 inductees into the Shaker Schools Alumni Hall of Fame are:

  • Carter Bays, Class of 1993, a successful television writer and producer, and creator of the hit TV show, How I Met Your Mother
  • The Honorable Rebecca Frank Dallet, Class of 1987, a respected jurist who was elected to the Wisconsin Supreme Court in 2018
  • coleman a. jordan / ebo, Class of 1981, an accomplished architect and multimedia artist who has exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad, notably in Ghana and Kenya
  • John L. Morgan, Class of 1986, a detective with the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department, who specializes in investigations related to human trafficking
  • John Morris Russell, Class of 1978, a conductor of the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, music director of the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, and principal pops conductor of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Kevin Snipes, Class of 1981, an acclaimed ceramic artist who has exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad
  • Kenny Thompkins, Class of 1977, a Walt Disney animator whose award-winning design work has included characters from Winnie the Pooh and Beauty and the Beast
  • Rev. Dr. Alyn Waller, Class of 1982, a highly-sought-after revivalist pastor, vocalist, and lecturer who is dedicated to social justice, health and food security initiatives

Provided circumstances allow, we look forward to welcoming them back to the Shaker schools in April of 2021 to address current Shaker students at an assembly and to attend a dinner at Shaker Heights Country Club in their honor. Stay tuned for details on those events

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The Reviews are in: First Virtual “Shaker Speaks” is a Smash

The first-ever virtual “Shaker Speaks” series featured a panel of three talented Shaker alumni who spoke about their experience with Shaker Theatre, moderated by department chair Scott Sumerak. Attendees enjoyed hearing songs, stories and advice for theatre-bound students from Anita Hollander, Class of 1974, who has starred in many theatrical productions in New York City and advocates for performers with disabilities; Rev Rachel Hollander, Class of 1981, who works as a theatrical interpreter for the deaf and had to memorize the lines of several Hamilton characters in just 11 days; and Gina Joyce Hobbs, a classically-trained singer, and marketing professional who spoke about her journey supporting her daughter, Lauryn Hobbs, Class of 2016, as she makes her way to the professional acting stage!

The virtual format allowed attendees to join from throughout the country, many of whom had not connected with the Shaker schools since their own days on the stage in the Large Auditorium.

Watch for details about a special event with Shaker parent and nationally-renowned adolescent psychologist Lisa Damour, slated for February of 2021. Be sure to follow the Foundation’s Facebook page and Instagram and visit the Foundation’s website to learn more about upcoming events.

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Alumni Connect Using Zoom

Over the summer, many Shaker alumni used Zoom as a way to safely connect with one another. Some are old friends, like members of the Class of 1998 who meet regularly to discuss social issues and even enjoyed a book club session about Celeste Ng’s popular book, Little Fires Everywhere, recently made into a miniseries on Hulu. Others have used Zoom to make new connections with alumni in their geographic region, including Atlanta, Boston, Rhode Island, and DC. The Chicago area is up next! If you would like assistance in setting up a gathering with Shaker alumni in your region, or with your classmates, please email our Shaker Alumni coordinator.

Attention Parents of Shaker Heights High School Alumni!

The Shaker Schools Foundation’s Advisory Committee is starting an affinity group for parents of Shaker graduates. Knowing that many former parents have warm memories of the years they had students in the school system, we wanted to determine appropriate ways for those alumni parents to reconnect with each other and to Shaker.

Please take a moment to complete this brief survey. Thank you for taking the time to help us serve you better!

Foundation Welcomes Two New Board Members

The Foundation welcomes two new members of the Board of TrusteesChristopher Hunter and Jennifer Lawry Adams, who joined us in June. We extend our sincere thanks to our two outgoing board members, Bill McGovern, Class of 1983, and Brian Sullivan, Class of 1985. Thank you both for your dedicated service to the Shaker Schools!

chris hunter

Christopher Hunter is Associate General Counsel, Intellectual Property, at Parker-Hannifin Corporation, where he focuses on intellectual property counseling and infringement issues, and IP transactions. He earned his BS in Physics from Bucknell University, and a J.D. from Case Western Reserve School of Law, where he is an adjunct professor. He was a citizen’s member of the Shaker Heights Neighborhood Development Committee and Finance Committee and served on the Mayor’s Financial Task Force. Chris and his wife, Maria, a physician at University Health Services, have three children who have graduated from the Shaker schools.

Jennifer Adams

Jennifer Lawry Adams is a partner at Ulmer & Berne LLP where she is a group leader of the health care practice group and co-chair of the firm’s Women In Law and Leadership Committee. Her practice is focused on a range of disciplines, including health care transactions, mergers and acquisitions, and a variety of corporate law matters. She is a 1988 graduate of Shaker Heights High School. She earned her BA from Georgetown University and her JD from Case Western Reserve University. Jennifer and her husband Daniel live in the Boulevard neighborhood and have three children currently in the Shaker Schools. She joined the board in June 2020.

Donors: Thank You for Keeping our Mission in Motion!

Despite the extremely challenging circumstances presented by COVID-19, the Shaker Schools Foundation’s important work continues – thanks to you! Our Donor Appreciation Report is our way of sharing our gratitude for your involvement and demonstrating the many ways we put your donations to work in service of our mission. Please take a moment to read about the many ways your gifts are impacting the lives of our students.

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Your Donations Make the Difference!

Thank you for supporting our teachers and students and keeping our Mission in Motion!

Thank You to Our 2018-2019 Corporate Partners!

Shaker Schools Foundation, 15600 Parkland Drive, Shaker Heights, Ohio 44120

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