Westerly Independent School Gets $2 Million Loan

At a time when few are able to obtain credit, Long Beach’s Westerly School received a $2 million loan to construct new buildings at its East 29th Street campus. The lender is LDC, a Los Angeles based non-profit that provides financing to other non-profits, schools and underserved constituencies.

LDC is providing the funds based on Westerly School’s promise to repay the loan in large part with donor pledges, which currently total $2 million over the next five years. The loan is also backed by current assets at the school’s 5.5 acre campus.

In a press release sent to LBPost.com, Westerly officials note that “General Motors can’t get credit. General Electric can’t get credit. The California State Government has to sell their own bonds direct to consumers. But a local non-profit institution, Westerly School, has been able to get financing for a new building.”

The proud statement comes as credit lending nationwide has come to a screeching halt. Individuals with good or great credit are having difficulty obtaining loans. Companies and organizations, too, are finding little support from lenders who fear potential defaults in a market unable to support itself.

As part of its long-term master plan, Westerly School will construct the Raymond F. Bizjack Arts Village with the $2 million loan. The facility is named for Westerly’s founding headmaster, Ray Bizjack, who lead the private school from its opening in 1992 until his resignation in 2002. Following his tenure at Westerly School, Bizjack served as president of Long Beach’s only catholic high school – St. Anthony – prior to his death in 2004 after a two year battle with brain cancer.

The Raymond F. Bizjack Arts Village supports Westerly’s educational philosophy to encourage creative and independent thinking, to cultivate an appreciation for the arts, and to combine academics with experiential, hands-on learning. Included in the village are three distinct areas; the visual arts with studio space and outdoor workrooms, the music studio with practice rooms, and the primary studio with retractable walls that create an outdoor amphitheater.


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