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30 Year Anniversary - Looking Back: "Educating the Heart and Mind”

Anniversaries offer an opportunity to reflect on our past and reflect on the future. As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of The McGillis School, throughout the year, we will be “looking back” and honoring our beginnings by sharing stories, reflections, milestones, and memories. 

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McGillis celebrating 30 years!


The McGillis School is founded as the Jewish Community Center Elementary School with twelve students.


McGillis students participate in the first “Fall Leaf Haul” cleaning up leaves for elderly neighbors in partnership with Jewish Family Services and Salt Lake Aging Services


The Jewish Community Center Elementary School is renamed The McGillis JCC Elementary School in honor of Joanne & Richard McGillis, for their support of the school.


The school gains 501(c)3 status, incorporates, and becomes an independent entity called The McGillis School. On December 2, 2002, The McGillis School purchases the historic Douglas School.


The McGillis School opens its doors at its new location to students on September 1. Named for its primary benefactors, Joanne and Richard McGillis, the school year opens with 129 students in grades one through seven.


The School begins to double the number of classes beginning with the addition of a second first grade class. The first class of eighth grade students graduated from The McGillis School in 2005. The School   becomes a candidate member of the Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools (PNAIS).


The McGillis School gains fully accredited status with PNAIS. The School receives multiple commendations and no conditions.


The McGillis School opens its doors to the completed 57,000 square foot expansion with 325 students in Kindergarten through eighth grades.


McGillis launches the AfterSchool program.


McGillis became the first K-8 school in Utah to achieve Gold LEED Certification.


McGillis launches its Summer Program.


The McGillis School officially adopts the Magpie as its mascot


The school celebrates 10 years at the Historic Douglas School location.


The school year begins with 390 students and is re-accredited unconditionally with NWAIS, receiving many commendations.


Jim Brewer becomes the fourth Head of School


The first Kindergarten Class graduates from the McGillis School


McGillis launches The Learning Center in Fall 2020