Information about the Olympia Community School
Olympia Community School was established in 1973 as a non-profit corporation governed by a board of directors elected by parents. Each of us contributes to the function of our school based on our abilities and resources. We work with our professionally certified teachers to provide an exemplary child-centered education for our children.
The story of our beginnings
Olympia Community School was founded as a secular, non-profit elementary school in 1973 by two teachers and a small group of parents. The original name was the Open Community School, a reference to the quality of the community of teachers, parents and students which they hoped to create. Olympia Community School has always operated under the approval of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. OCS has operated at several locations over 35 years, including near the Capitol Campus, and for the past 20 years on the Evergreen State College campus. This location was born of the close and ongoing association with Evergreen State College faculty (many of whom have sent their children to OCS) and academic programs (through teaching interns and work-study students). This association is possible because of the similarities in educational philosophy, practice and methodology between the two schools. Not surprisingly many of our teachers over the years have come out of the Masters in Teaching Program at Evergreen because they want to teach in an alternative environment with small class sizes and an emphasis on relationship to the natural world.
OCS parents have through the years shared a vision of a school that is both a safe haven for children and a place that is intimately connected to its immediate environment, our local communities, south Puget Sound and the world. We constantly look to our parent community, and the activities and interests of our Olympia neighbors to find ways to make our school connected to the greater challenge of building and sustaining a just and sustainable society.
The board of directors is elected by parents, meets monthly, and is ultimately responsible for the values and operations of the school. Our teachers are supported by teaching interns drawn from local colleges, and several tuition reduction positions staffed by parents. The Board of Directors delegates tasks to standing or temporary committees. Daily operations are managed by three integrated teams that provide educational services for our children, manage the physical plant and daily administration of the school, and insure the economic health of our shared institution.
The Olympia Community School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and other school-administered programs.