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The TKS Annual Fund


We are The Kessler School.

We are the educators, families, and community partners who are passionately committed to educating the next generation of life-long learners.

We are more than just a school. We are a community. And together, we are building an unlimited educational experience that values individuality, cultivates a passion for learning, instills respect for others, and promotes leadership and community service.

So what makes The Kessler School a premier school of choice for families in southern Dallas?


"The Kessler School is the complete package: devoted teachers, innovative curriculum, small classes with personalized attention, and an incredible sense of community among the families. We are so thankful we have this gem here in Oak Cliff and don’t have to drive across town to give our kids a first-rate education," 

Shelbi Barnhouse, Mother of three Kessler School Students.



Through our Annual Fund, we are fulfilling our mission of creating an enriching learning environment, tailored to the unique needs of our students. Our Annual Fund allows us to remain competitive with other private schools in the Metroplex by offering a well-rounded curriculum in harmony with our students, families, and faculty right here in Oak Cliff.

The Annual Fund is truly a community endeavor. In the words of Vanessa Ullmann, our Head of School,

“Every gift makes a difference and demonstrates the level of commitment we have to the value of education provided for our students.”

‚ÄčEach year, we rely on our school community to contribute to the Annual Fund. Tuition only covers 77% of the cost of our school’s expenses, so these tax-deductible donations to the Annual Fund make it possible for The Kessler School to continue to provide an unlimited, exceptional foundation for our students to grow.

Families who enroll their students at The Kessler School do so because we offer a high-quality educational experience that is aligned with Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills (TEKS). Students are challenged to not only meet grade-level expectations as defined by the State of Texas, but to develop a range of skills, supported by the Annual Fund, that underlies academic success. When our students excel, they are better positioned to access, and create, unlimited opportunities in their future



Our child-centered curriculum was developed with an emphasis on the fine arts and STEM. Problem-solving and creativity are among the essential skills we help our students nurture through our Annual Fund and community partners. In fact, next year will be the seventh year our arts program has been directed in partnership with Oil and Cotton, a local women-owned art school.

“The relationship we have with Oil and Cotton provides our students the opportunities for brain development, self-esteem, and creativity,” writes Jesse Bartlett, one of our 4th-grade teachers. “They also provide quality art education by offering a thoughtful curriculum that teaches our students the importance of art history, instructing them on how to use materials and resources responsibly, and connecting them with exceptional teaching artists.”


The Annual Fund allows us to provide a personalized education within an enriching small school environment. Smaller class sizes help us keep the student experience front and center at the Kessler School as teachers meet the needs of each individual student. By nurturing these important one-on-one relationships with their students, teachers are better able to guide their students’ natural curiosity about the world around them.

All of our teachers agree, these relationships, made possible through smaller classroom sizes, are a defining feature of the Kessler experience. “I love the autonomy I have in my classroom,” writes Mrs. Hayes, one of our Pre-K II teachers. “The low student-to-teacher ratio means I get to spend ample time getting to know my students and their interests and shape our learning environment to reflect them.”

Faculty & Staff

By supporting the Annual Fund, you can help us provide our faculty with competitive salaries and professional development opportunities to ensure the continued academic excellence of our school. Our partnership with Mad Science, for example, helps train our teachers to better incorporate interactive STEM activities into their lesson plans. Our Annual Fund also enables us to send teachers to Columbia University every summer to participate in workshops centered around the Teachers’ College Reading and Writing Project (TCRWP).“One of the most valuable experiences I have had as a teacher is to be involved in professional development,” writes Mrs. Graham, one of our 2nd-grade teachers.
“Professional development allows me to be my best for my students. It keeps me abreast of the latest studies, research, and strategies that really work in the classroom. The Annual Fund plays an active part in influencing the teachers’ ability to learn and the students’ ability to learn.”
Donations to the Annual Fund help us sustain the programs that make The Kessler School special: extraordinary teachers, small class sizes, enrichment opportunities, and academic excellence. When you pledge to support our Annual Fund, you are joining a vibrant community that values education and shares a common vision of creating a future full of possibilities for our students. Together, with your support, we are helping the next generation of leaders, dreamers, and doers achieve their full, unlimited potential.

 - TKS Annual Fund Sponsors -