Monday, May 3, 2010

Scott Jacks, Founder, Former Board of Trustees Co-Chair and Alumni Parent, Lends His Perspective on 15 Years at The Willow

“If I had it to do all over again, we would go to The Willows.”

Scott Jacks has worn many hats at The Willows – founder, parent, Board of Trustees member and Co-Chair, alumni parent and more. He served on the Board of Trustees for 15 years until last year. Scott remarks, “I have been at The Willows for all the Capital Campaigns, acquisitions and building, including the gymnasium. But the most challenging time was the very beginning when we were trying to promote the school without a location.”

Scott recalls that when the founders decided to start the school as a group, they did not have a site. “We had a presentation for prospective teachers by Lisa and her teachers at what is now the W Hotel in Westwood. I was certainly anxious at the beginning. Everything had fallen apart at our other school in February. The timing was dreadful because we were too late to apply to any private schools. So, we gathered prospective students and families to present the school to them.” He describes the scene as optimistic but urgent. Lisa and the founders talked to the audience. Teachers had tables set up with what they were going to teach. “At most schools you apply and review applications, but we were a bit like ‘bring us your students’. We needed students. Fellow founder Mark Solomon made an impassioned plea and we were on our way.”

During this time Scott remembers that in July, founder and parent Ellen Cohen called him and said, “come over to 8509 Higuera – this is the place!” It was a large industrial building. “We had no time for a CUP. Culver City issued a temporary permit and we were on our way. Michael Lester, another founder, and I were creating and revising budgets and finally we opened with 98 kids. The doors were opened. It was amazing! We were worried but it all happened. And now look at us”

Scott points out that what began as a little start-up out of necessity has now grown into an extremely successful educational program with alumni students graduating from the finest colleges and becoming successful adults. He feels the present opportunities to enhance the campus and the buildings are exciting, and he is proud to have played a part in establishing this lasting educational legacy. Scott’s son Greg Jacks, Willows Class of 2004, had his own vision of The Willows at a young age. In the 1997-98 Willows yearbook, in response to the question “What would you do if you were Head of The Willows?” Greg responds, “Have a rollercoaster here and DK-college and an arcade or park.”

There may not be a roller coaster or arcade, but when Scott steps onto The Willows’ current campus, he feels pride. “When I think of that first year, what we went through, how dicey it was at times, and when I walk on this campus now, I scratch my head. It’s truly remarkable. And then I feel a huge sense of pride at being part of it.”

“There never was a day that my kids cried or said they didn’t want to go to school. That speaks worlds. That speaks to everything”, Scott emphasizes. “Our kids developed as individuals at The Willows. If I had it to do all over again, we would go to The Willows.”


Anonymous said...

[url=]Phen375[/url] are tablets that help trim body weight. One of these tabs has to be enchanted with water, around 20 minutes already a collation, twice a day.

Anonymous said...

garcinia cambogia extract side effects[/url] is the rout paunchy fervid extract present in vend these days a days. Bow to upto 10 kg in 1 month. garcinia cambogia select