Endeavor Schools Reaches 100-School Milestone with Latest Acquisition
Endeavor Schools has reached the 100-school milestone after acquiring Turtle River Montessori’s two locations in Jupiter, Florida. Highly valued in the Jupiter area for nearly 30 years, Turtle River Montessori’s track record of stellar education and talented educators is a perfect fit for Endeavor Schools.
“We are excited to welcome the Turtle River Montessori schools to the Endeavor Schools family,” said CEO Ricardo Campo. “They embody the values and commitment to education we strive to have in all our schools, and I am proud to welcome them as our 99th and 100th schools. This milestone is a testament to the amazing team I have the privilege to lead.”
Founded by Campo in 2014, Endeavor Schools has grown rapidly in size and stature. Starting with two schools in the Atlanta area, Campo’s vision of an organization that provides community-centered schools offering high-quality education programs is now a reality, serving tens of thousands of families nationwide.
A Vision Inspired by Personal Experience
Campo was inspired to found Endeavor Schools after discovering several issues within early childhood education while searching for high-quality programs for his children.
Some of those pain points included:
Disparity in Quality: Many early learning centers were run more like nurseries than schools with research-based programs led by credentialed educators. Campo wanted to increase the number of early learning schools that strengthened children’s intellectual and social development.
Lack of Resources: Most schools are small local businesses with strong ties to their communities. However, they sometimes need more resources to provide the best training for teachers and student programs. Campo wanted a way to keep intact schools’ community ties while providing schools with the educational resources to provide the best education to students and professional development to educators.
Lack of Succession: Many school owners are baby boomers thinking about retirement. This can mean uncertainty for these owners and the communities they serve. After they retire, founders want to ensure their employees and the families they serve are well taken care of. Campo saw an opportunity to address this need by helping these owner’s transition to a reputable school organization where their succession could be cemented, their people taken care of, and their legacies carried forward.
Campo spearheaded the Endeavor Schools vision by addressing these pain points in the early childhood education industry with a focus on quality academic programs, a people-centric culture, and an emphasis on maintaining community connection.
“Today, as we operate 100 schools, I am proud to say that we have assembled a team of world-class educators and professionals that bring much-needed subject matter expertise and know-how to ensure that our educators thrive and that the children we serve feel nurtured and inspired to learn,” Campo said. “I am extremely proud of our team and get very excited about our proprietary professional development programs, which just keep getting better.”
Built Through Teamwork and Lasting Relationships
While seeking to maintain community ties, Endeavor Schools has often hired employees from newly acquired schools to take on leadership positions within the company. Doing so has allowed the company to utilize people’s valuable experience in their communities while also adding to the overall depth of its leadership team.
Ken Jones was the facilities manager for Atlanta Montessori International School when Endeavor acquired the school in 2014. With Jones’ experience and stellar security and facilities management background, Campo asked him to join the Endeavor Support Team, where his role grew to oversee facilities and security across many schools. Today, he is the Vice President of Facilities and Security across Endeavor’s 100 schools.
“When I joined Endeavor Schools in 2014, we had six schools at the time. I was part of an acquisition, and I was very apprehensive of the entire process and what this new journey meant for me and the school I loved dearly,” Jones said. “Almost ten years and 945 schools later, not only is the school I loved so dearly still thriving, but I am also continuing to grow in a role I enjoy. Endeavor Schools is an amazing company with a leader and founder of tremendous integrity.”
In addition to recruiting talent through acquisitions, Endeavor has relied on longtime employees who have contributed to the company’s growth and success and who have experienced tremendous professional growth in the process.
Jennifer Garcia-Gonzalez, an Endeavor HR Business Partner, has been with the company since its founding. As one of the principal people helping to onboard new employees, she has seen her role grow exponentially.
“Watching Endeavor Schools grow from just two schools and a few dozen employees to 1001 schools with thousands of employees has been an incredible professional experience and personal journey,” Garcia-Gonzalez said. “One of the best parts has been meeting so many teachers passionate about children’s education and wellbeing. As our company expands, we will always seek educators who care about our students as much as we do. Partnering with educators brings me much purpose and happiness.”
A Commitment to the Teacher Experience
In addition to providing high-quality education programs, one of Endeavor’s keys to growth has been focusing on its teachers. From ensuring that teachers have the tools and support they need to create a positive learning environment to providing innovative training and career advancement opportunities, Endeavor Schools has built a reputation where educators flourish.
“As our company has grown, so has our ability to provide a wide range of resources for our educators,” said Dr. Amy Brereton, the Chief Academics Officer at Endeavor Schools. “We’ve created several programs that give our teachers support, training, mentorship, and much more. Teaching is a skill that should be constantly nurtured and strengthened. At Endeavor Schools, we make that possible.”
This steadfast commitment to the teacher experience is demonstrated at each of Endeavor’s schools nationwide. It has helped begin successful careers in teaching while also assisting experienced educators to get to the next level.
An Emphasis on Core Values
During its successful trajectory, Endeavor Schools has been committed to core values that guide and inspire team members toward a common goal of helping every child succeed. These core values are Respect, Ownership, Humility, and Growth.
EVP Ricky Sarmiento, who has been with Endeavor Schools since 2015, acknowledges the positive impact these core values have had on all aspects of the company.
“Seeing our organization grow from a handful of schools to 100 has been an incredible journey,” Sarmiento said. “Yet even more meaningful than our growth has been our steady commitment to living our core values. Each value represents a guiding light in terms of the culture we aspire to cultivate. Collectively, these values provide a foundation for how we interact with those we serve.”
Living up to its core values will be an essential aspect of Endeavor as the company seeks to bring high-quality education programs to more communities around the country.
“Moving forward, our core values will continue to be a unifying force in our pursuit of building excellent schools where children, families, and educators thrive,” Sarmiento said.
There is No Finish Line
As Endeavor Schools celebrates its 100-school milestone, new milestones are already in the works. To do this, however, will require more schools and teachers of the highest caliber to maintain the high quality that has become a part of the Endeavor Schools identity.
Jason Mauricio, the Chief Development Officer at Endeavor Schools, says the company will focus on finding schools with proven track records of excellence.
“At the heart of our mission is commitment to providing education programs that children and families love,” Mauricio said. “As we achieve more milestones in the future, we will always stay true to that mission for the benefit of the communities we serve.”
Maggie Laureano, the Executive Vice President of Human Resources at Endeavor Schools, says that the company is more dedicated than ever to finding the best education professionals for its schools.
“Endeavor Schools has succeeded because of the passion and dedication of all our educators and support staff nationwide,” Laureano said. “As we continue to grow, we will be seeking new team members with that same passion and dedication to join our Endeavor family, as that is truly what makes our schools so great.”
For Campo, seeing his vision of community-minded, teacher-focused schools grow from two schools to more than 100 over the past ten years has energized him to keep going strong.
“One of our company’s core values is ‘growth,’ and I would like us to believe that there is no finish line,” Campo said. “I want us to keep growing, keep improving, and keep getting better with each school we add. Based on our current momentum and the incredible team we have, I believe we can add another 100 schools in the next five years.”
For all his company’s success, the Endeavor Schools CEO says that it would not have happened without the people around him, including his team and family.
“It is truly a privilege to work with such passionate education professionals who are committed to our mission,” Campo said. “I am grateful to them, and to my family, for the constant support and inspiration they fuel me with. I could not do it without them, and I dedicate this milestone to them!”