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Oh What A Year!

By December 19, 2019No Comments

year end photos

Dear Friends,

2019 was an incredible year at The Heights Foundation/The Heights Center.
We are so appreciative of our donors, partners, volunteers and friends who helped make it possible.

Thanks to you, here are a few highlights of the work we are doing in Harlem Heights.


  • GLAD Kids Early Learning Center becomes a part of The Heights Foundation family. GLAD provides quality childcare for infants to Pre-K.
  • 70% of our AfterSchool kids improved at least 1 core grade, 20% improved in 3 or more core grades.
  • In a 4 month period, our Heights Charter School kids improved an average of 7 months in Reading and Math.


  • RG Architects present conceptual design and plans for the new Heights Early Learning and Education Center.
  • The 36,000 square foot, 3 story building is the latest addition to our campus. It will serve as the new home for GLAD Kids Early Learning Center and the Harlem Heights Community Charter School, grades K-5.
  • The building has music and art labs designed with access to an outdoor roof terrace.
  • The terrace will also host the aquaponics and hydroponics gardens.
  • An outdoor play pavilion is included as part of the design for PE activities.
  • 12th annual Love Your Neighbor raises $311,000 toward Annual Fund, and over $3 million for Education Center.


  • The Harlem Heights Charter School files an Amendment to the Charter to include 4th & 5th grades.


  • MusicWorks! kids perform onstage at the BB Mann Performing Arts Hall with the Gulf Coast Symphony orchestra.
  • 30 donors attend a Wine Dinner at Harold’s Restaurant – an auction item from Love Your Neighbor.


  • GLAD Kids enrollment has doubled to 90 kids.
  • Registration for Summer Camp is full with 120 kids.


  • Final grading period of AfterSchool kids, 91% improved at least one core grade.
  • For the school year, Heights Charter School kids improved an average of 1.3 years in Reading and Math. And there was a 97% growth in positive behaviors, effort, and motivation toward school.


  • 515 Heights students receive a backpack and school supplies.
  • Third (and final!) modular for Charter School arrives on-site to house Charter School classroom.


  • Summer Camp wraps up. Another year of AfterSchool begins with 127 kids.
  • Our fourth year of Heights Charter School begins with 105 students in grades K-4th.


  • Groundbreaking for our new Education Center is held. More than 100 in attendance plus our school kids. 82% of the project’s budget has been raised in a silent campaign. Construction is underway!
  • MusicWorks! begins a new school year with 55 kids taking lessons in string, brass, woodwind, and percussion.


  • We begin arts enrichment classes; with 26 kids enrolled in keyboard, guitar, and hip-hop classes thanks to a grant from Craig and Susan Scott.
  • Fort Myers Rotary Club distributes dictionaries to Charter School 3rd graders.


  • Thanksgiving Outreach provides a turkey and groceries to 1,200 Heights residents.
  • With one month in the calendar year left, we have already provided 349,415 hours of service to Heights residents.


  • Donations from churches, civic organizations, and businesses will provide Christmas gifts to 800 Heights kids
  • MusicWorks! kids perform their Winter Concert at The Heights Center.

What will 2020 bring?

  • Look for upcoming Hard Hat Tours of our new Education Center.
  • Construction is on schedule, and plan to have a temporary Certificate of Occupancy by late July, in time for the start of school on Aug. 10.
  • Add our 5th and final grade to the Charter School – and GLAD Kids will join us on our campus.
  • A refresh to The Heights Center. New IT server/phone system, building. signage, new auditorium floor, and more.
  • The MusicWorks! program will be rebranded and entirely under the oversight of The Heights Foundation/The Heights Center.

Without your support, our work would not be possible. We are sincerely thankful for you!

If you would like to stop by and see the progress of The Education Center, or learn more about us, please don’t hesitate to contact me. To view our construction progress click here.

If you would like to make a year-end donation to support us, please click here.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful Christmas and new year.


Kathryn Kelly
Founder/President and CEO
The Heights Center/The Heights Foundation