Gray Matters, May 2024

Beyond Bricks and Mortar: Supporting Our Oldest “Community Member”

It was lovely to see many of you at Friday’s Spring Fundraiser. By all measures the event was a fantastic demonstration of support for this school that we adore. In particular for me, the camaraderie that was on full display was a palpable illustration of our strong community and warm and welcoming culture. And, we raised some money! Thank you all very much. We are extremely grateful for your generosity. 

On Friday evening we shared this video, and numerous donors raised a paddle in support of our oldest “community member,” the Dent Building. The building’s large windows, wood floors, and exposed brick create a warm and bright learning environment. But, like any old home, these features occasionally need nurturing. 

First opening as a public school in 1902, the Dent Building has a rich history (for more history, read this article written by Teddy Stiklorious, class of 2023). Much to our surprise and thrill, we recently uncovered the original architect drawings for the building. In significant ways, our current-day use of the facility aligns well with the building's original design. Of note, however, are separate rooms labeled for boys and girls play room (an antiquated notion today) and a space marked for bicycles (the Capitol Hill Day School tradition of biking to school has a lineage). 

Capitol Hill Day School’s tenure in the building began in 1980 with the consolidation of our program from two church basements. Over our more than forty years of living in the Dent Building, the facility has undergone numerous projects ranging from routine maintenance to major renovations. As educators, the aesthetic of our learning environment matters to us greatly. As we often say, space is the third teacher. With each project, whether large or small, our mission and beliefs about what is most important for the growth and development of young learners has been the driving influence on design. 

As I said Friday evening, if the Dent Building’s walls could talk they would have a wonderful story to tell. If you have not taken an opportunity to donate to this initiative, we hope you will consider doing so. Financial donations will provide support for several Dent Building maintenance projects and help us steward this wonderful asset that we call our school home. 

Head of School, Jason Gray makes a pincho pot with an EC student.



Catch up on past Gray Matters below: