our mission:

Established in 2004, BAEF is a volunteer-run organization with the goal of raising funds through private donations and grants to support a more comprehensive education for the students of the Beacon City School District.

 our goals:

•    Support programs and activities that would 

    not otherwise be achievable through 

    available public funds.

• Encourage the educational development of 

    BCSD students and staff.

• Foster community involvement and     

    partnerships in the public education process

why a foundation?

BCSD educates approximately 2500 children, K through grade, in 6 schools.  In recent years the amount of state aid to the BCSD has declined significantly and consequently, it has become increasingly difficult to fund innovative educational programs that provide a richness to the educational experience of our students.It is the foundation’s goal to support such innovation.

who we are:

We are a coalition of concerned parents. residents, local businesses and friends of education in the BCSD.

what we support:

Since its inception, The Beacon Arts & Education Foundation has supported well over $100,000 worth of programming in the BCSD. 

This support has gone to keep the Calico Ball, a treasured tradition that has been a part of the third grade curriculum for the last 28 years but was cut from the BCSD budget in 2009.  For the ninth consecutive year, BAEF has been able to fund this 10 week program which teams students and teachers with professional teaching artists and dancers from the critically acclaimed dance company, Vanaver Caravan. Each 3rd grade class focuses on a different region of the world, learns about the cultural traditions there, and is trained in a dance representing that region.  This program culminates in a global dance festival at Beacon High School where each class performs in full costume, accompanied by live music.

BAEF is also proud to have funded new sound equipment in the high school, over $5000 worth of musical instruments with another $5,000 planned for the 2017-18 school year, sponsorship of The "I'm Tired" Project based out of the United Kingdom for Rombout Middle School students (The “I’m Tired” Project has effectively initiated a social debate around daily prejudices faced by people from all walks of life), sponsorship of the Common Ground Mural Project, Shakespeare in the high school, live performances for the middle school, teaching artists and more!

O U R  1 0 0 %  V O L U N T E E R  S T A F F

Anna Bergin, co-chair

Lori Merhige, co-chair

Debbie Brennen, president Beacon Advocates for Music (BAM)

Rebecca Correllus, president BAM

Elissa Betterbid, board member

Kit Burke-Smith, board member

Samantha Palmeri, board member

Meredith Heuer, liaison & photographer (former chair) 

Craig Wolf, Ex officio BAM

Donna Mikkelsen, BeaconArts liason