Anniversary Campaign

The Future of Sterne School

A New Home, A Community Connected

The new Sterne School campus at 838 Kearny Street unites our programs under one roof at the intersection of three of San Francisco's most culturally rich neighborhoods.

Boasting nearly 50,000 square feet in total, the campus at 838 Kearny Street was largely completed to LEED for School standards in 2011.

However, the building's western wings and lower level remain unfinished, providing Sterne with an unprecedented opportunity to develop state-of-the art facilities to support innovative programming in science & engineering, fine & performing arts, and athletics: a creative, forward-looking, and necessary initiative we call the 838 Kearny Street Project.

Upon completion, the 838 Kearny Street Project will achieve major goals identified by Sterne's leadership over the past decade of growth.

  • Innovating space for teaching and learning
  • Supporting whole student programming, particularly in art, engineering, design, and athletics.
  • Uniting our community from within and connecting with the community outside
  • Establishing Sterne as a national leader in specialized education

The Anniversary Campaign

The 838 Kearny Street Project will be funded through The Anniversary Campaign. This extraordinary initiative represents the largest fundraising drive in Sterne's history -- a fitting distinction as it coincides with this most significant event.

The Anniversary Campaign is, fundamentally, about fulfilling the promise of Sterne School: to become a premier learning center for all kinds of students and their unique academic needs, a standard-bearer for specialized education, and a model for educators across the country.

Named in honor of Sterne's 40th Anniversary in 2016, the Anniversary Campaign launched quietly in August of that year with a historic $1,000,000 matching challenge.

As of Winter 2018, the Campaign stands at $2.4M. For more information about the Campaign, check the FAQs!

Campaigns are large-scale fundraising initiatives for specific and targeted projects. They are intended to be transformative in nature, providing extraordinary resources for Sterne to act on forward-looking priorities which further or deepen the School’s mission for years to come. Campaigns generally last around three years.

Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly will be funded by the Anniversary Campaign?
While well-established as a leader in academic intervention and remediation, Sterne’s ability to meet – and cultivate – students’ creative, athletic, and interdisciplinary talents has long been stymied by the limitations of our physical plants. The campus at 838 Kearny Street represents an unprecedented opportunity to create spaces for these programs to take root and thrive. With over 10,000 square feet allocated for the fine and performing arts, athletics, science and engineering, and independent study, 838 Kearny Street allows us to harness our community’s commitment to create a state-of-the-art, holistic learning center that meets all of our students’ needs.

How much has been raised to date?
We are currently 40% of the way to our $6.5 million-dollar goal. Early contributions have been put to immediate use, transforming overlarge classrooms into appropriately-sized learning environments, and breaking ground on the science lab, art studio, counseling center, and learning lab. As funds continue to come in, plans are being readied for the lower-level gymnasium, performing arts center, and kitchen.

Is there any way to start/finish the gym faster?
It is necessary to prioritize the 3rd & 4th Floor lab and classroom spaces to create suitable learning environments for our college-preparatory science and math curricula, and to alleviate pressure on the classrooms and staff offices. (Additional classroom space also allows us to increase enrollment, which in turn creates revenue for the school.) However, in the presence of funding there are economies of timing. If we raise the necessary funds to complete all construction in tandem, we will commence the gymnasium build-out sooner.

What is the projected maximum enrollment in the new campus? When do you expect to reach that figure?
The maximum enrollment in the new building once the unfinished spaces are completed is between 220-240 students. Our goal is to reach 220 students in the next five years.

Small class sizes are what drew us to Sterne. Will these be compromised as we grow?
Sterne is committed to keeping class sizes to under 15 students in the Upper Elementary and Middle School (with two teachers), and under 18 in the High School (students requiring more differentiation may be placed in smaller classes as appropriate). Plans for the unfinished spaces include three 400 square-foot classrooms, which will allow us to add more classes in our larger grades; moving arts and science to dedicated spaces will also free up classrooms for smaller classes. And of course, increased staffing is folded into the five-year plan.

Between the Anniversary Campaign, the Annual Fund, and events, there is a lot of fundraising happening! How do I know where I should direct my giving?
It is important to the ongoing operations of the school that you continue to maintain your annual giving, even during a campaign. Sterne relies on a consistent (and generous!) Annual Fund to maintain our current level of excellence and to inform important budgetary decisions. Please consider your gift to the Anniversary Campaign an addition to your current support of our school (and thank you!).

Will Sterne be offering naming opportunities?
Sterne is proud of and humbled by the generosity of our community, and aims to honor and thank our donors in a variety of ways. We invite those who give at or above a certain threshold the opportunity to name certain spaces in the new campus. For specific information about naming opportunities related to the project, please contact Jaime Tollas, Director of Development, at

This is exciting! I’d like to get involved.
To learn how your family can participate in the Anniversary Campaign, please contact Lea Wood, Director of Development, at


David Bradlow, President, Sterne School Board of Directors
Ed McManis, Head of School
Melissa Myers, Associate Head of School
Hali Croner & Constance LaFlamme, Board of Directors and Anniversary Campaign Co-Chairs
Cassie Bahan, Wanda Cole-Frieman, and Lisa Sawyer, Campaign Cabinet
Lea Wood, Director of Development
Anne Paxton, Finance & Business Manager
WRNS Studio, Architects
Skyline Construction