Seventh-day Adventist Community
Throughout its more than 50-year history, the foundation has been committed to supporting Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) schools and partners in creating environments where all children and families have equitable opportunities and resources to thrive.
This work initially focused on supporting individual schools and elementary/secondary students, but the foundation’s approach and partnerships have evolved over the years in response to the shifting needs of the SDA community and the foundation’s overall strategy. We have moved from direct services to investments in early childhood and systems-level change in SDA education. (Learn more about this journey by reading our Bainum Brief, “Realigning a Legacy: Foundation Refocuses Long-Standing Commitment to Faith-Based Education,” and our latest “Year in Review.”)
Today, our SDA partnerships focus primarily on three areas.
Advancing Christian Education (ACE) Academy
Strong leaders are a vital component of strong organizations — including schools. And focusing on building the capacity of school leaders is what led us to launch ACE Academy in 2015 to help support the Adventist school system in developing a strong pipeline of qualified leaders who bring leadership, instructional and operational excellence to SDA schools. By equipping, empowering and bringing together SDA education leaders, ACE Academy aims to advance its ultimate goal: ensuring all students have equitable opportunities to learn and be successful in school and life. We currently operate the ACE Academy Executive Coaching Program, a two-year program heavily focused on equity that trains experienced principals to be leadership coaches for newer principals.
Organizational Strategic Planning
Thriving organizations leverage effective operational practices to support their overall strategy. We invest in helping partners think through the many components and resources needed to achieve their mission and vision — from pursuing potential partnerships and funding streams to creating community-informed processes and procedures to achieve equitable and sustainable outcomes for students in schools.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Capacity-Building
Across the foundation, our work now is explicitly focused on undoing the inequities that affect children and families — especially Black and brown children and families. In our SDA work, we invest in helping partners understand and apply diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) principles and strategies that advance equity within their organizations.
Instructional Framework for 21st-Century Educators
Delivering developmentally appropriate, culturally responsive and individualized learning opportunities is paramount for students’ success. For the past nine years, one of the ways the foundation has invested in supporting SDA education has been through developing the Instructional Framework for 21st-Century Educators. Informed by leading research and educators in the field, the Framework bridges the gap between standards and classroom instruction by establishing a scope and sequence for teaching English/Language Arts content from kindergarten through eighth grade and providing a rubric that identifies eight best-practice indicators for instruction, lesson planning and learning assessment.
The recent completion of Framework concludes the foundation’s work in the instructional support space. Because we believe there is great value in this body of work, it will be made widely available on a website to SDA schools and any other schools or systems interested in taking advantage of this rich content.