"Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think."
- Albert Einstein
Our mission is to ignite and nurture confidence, curiosity, and creativity.
We are a highly engaged, reflective, courageous, and diverse community of student and adult learners. Together, we are committed to becoming our best selves intellectually, socially, emotionally, and physically.
Our vision is to prepare students for a future that is impossible to know but not impossible to shape.
We develop within each member of our community the mindset, toolset, and skillset needed to engage meaningfully and purposefully with the world around us. Together, we are committed to issues of social justice, equity, and sustainability.
Our team is a collection of exceptional individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences.
Teaching today involves more than simply disseminating knowledge. Our learning guides are curators of experiences, coaches who help students observe and reflect, facilitators who develop responsibility and agency, advocates who celebrate and challenge each student, and team players who engage with other guides, students, families, and external partners.
Above all else, our learning guides are professional learners.
Chris Bezsylko, Head of School
Judy Chang, Business Manager
Sharon Wu, Elementary Learning Guide
Cristian Arriaga, Physical Education Learning Guide & Extended Day Director
Hsin-Ling Tsai, Mandarin Learning Guide & Elementary Teaching Assistant
Lexie Lenae Nelson, STEAM Learning Guide & Community Connections Director
Sean O'Connor, Elementary Learning Guide
Sogolon Best, Mathematics Learning Guide
The Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees is the governing body of the School. The board establishes broad goals and overall school policies and appoints and evaluates the head of school. The board delegates school program management to the head of school, and once policy has been established, does not interfere with the daily operation of the school. Therefore, it directs all inquiries to the head of school and their administration and staff.
Tuolin Chen, Board Chair
ETU Inc., Co-Founder & CEO
Scott Buchholz, Trustee
The Head's Advisory Group
We are honored to have the partnership and support of our Advisory Board. This group serves as thought-partners, providing non-binding strategic advice around issues ranging from school facilities, to marketing, to fundraising, to community partnerships. Advisory Board members represent various perspectives and organizations from across our local community.
Stephanie Agnew, Assistant Director Parents Place on the Peninsula
Anne Beneventi, Educational Founder of Helios School
Laura McBain, K-12 Director at the Stanford d.school
Michael Nachbar, Executive Director of Global Online Academy
MORE ABOUT US
Our Location & Facilities
Conveniently located off the 101, our home at the Cubberly Center in Palo Alto offers a host of amenities. With two full size gymnasiums, an indoor pavilion, a theatre, multiple sports fields, tennis courts, and green spaces, we have all the advantages of a large school. In addition to the facilities, there are dance studios, martial arts centers, makerspaces, and art studios at the Cubberly Center. We are also a short walk away from Mitchell Park Community Center.
With a commitment to outdoor education and sustainability, our learning experiences frequently take place off campus. Our location is ideal for exploring the Baylands, local farms and gardens, the mountains, and even local beaches.
Diversity & Inclusion
As a diverse and inclusive community, we firmly believe that our differences make us stronger and that we are better together. Our commitment to inclusion creates an environment where children and adults alike are free to be their authentic selves. Our location allows us greater access to engage with the broader community, which in turn helps us cultivate the empathy and drive to work toward equity.
We believe that in order for children to fully engage in their communities, they must possess strong local, cultural and global competence. To that end, we learn from and enrich ourselves with multiple perspectives and welcome people of any country of origin, culture, disability, ethnicity, gender expression, gender identity, physical appearance, race, religious choice, family structure, sex, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status.
Our Founding Story
Imagination Lab School was founded in 2018 by Jingjing Xu, Yinuo Li, and Chris Bezsylko. Jingjing, Yinuo, and Chris were together at AltSchool Palo Alto where Chris was the founding head of school and Jingjing and Yinuo were parents. Over time, Yinuo founded ETU School in Beijing and AltSchool announced it was closing it's campuses. These three realized that there was a need for an innovative lab school in Silicon Valley and their combined efforts led them to start Imagination Lab School.
Over the years, ILS and ETU have collaborated to provide professional development in the areas of Project Based Learning and Social & Emotional Learning, and they created a Global Exchange Program for students and educators.
ILS looks forward to building partnerships with schools and organizations that are committed to empowering students to be their best selves.