Despite the uncertainty surrounding a fulsome opening due to factors outside of our control, we ask that you appreciate that your contribution will put the school in the best possible position to address this pandemic in the coming months and allow the school to recuperate costs already incurred.
INVESTING IN OUR FUTURE
The direct giving represented by the Call to Arms initiative forecasts the mission-focused appeal that St. Patrick’s will now make each year through the St. Patrick’s Annual Fund. The most direct way to support St. Patrick’s School will be through a contribution to our Annual Fund. With no fundraising cost for this appeal, 100% of each contribution goes directly to school needs. The Annual Fund will complement the sales and event-based fundraisers that our community enjoys in a regular academic year.
A typical school with an Annual Fund will project what they believe can reasonably raise through the Annual Fund, fundraising events, and other forms of aid (grants) and incorporate that revenue into the annual operating budget. Currently, St. Patrick’s School operates on a true-cost tuition model, buttressed by some additional financial aid support and fundraising events. This financial planning model is sufficient when a school is fully staffed, funded to maintain a forward-thinking education plan, comfortable that future capital repairs, maintenance, and improvements are achievable, and sustaining an emergency fund. Unfortunately, this is not the financial position of St. Patrick’s School at this time.
By establishing the St. Patrick's Annual Fund, we will be adding a different fundraising source to our financial plan. Many schools have mimicked our traditional fundraising efforts where we ask people in our community to be consumers with the added benefit of supporting the school – think of our events and sales efforts. This type of fundraising is essential to community-building, but it comes with expenses and a lot of (wo)manpower.
Today many are willing to give back resources more than time, which is why most elementary schools in the ADW have focused on an Annual Fund to bridge the gap between the cost of tuition and the true cost of a Catholic school education. This will be a shift to asking our community to partner and be investors in the school, acknowledging that tuition covers only the current expenses not taking depreciation or expanded needs into consideration. This streamlines the fundraising, raises the return for the school and more deeply engages the community in the mission of the school. It gives us all an opportunity to share a long-term vision and enables Principal Short to fund that vision.
Within the Annual Fund, we will establish different giving areas and donor recognition levels. The future Annual Fund recognition levels are displayed as donation levels on the Call to Arms “Wall of Donors” tab. Moving forward, we will invite every member of our community to make a meaningful gift to the St. Patrick’s Annual Fund. The level of a meaningful gift is different for every family, but every gift will make a difference demonstrating how our community values a St. Patrick’s education.
A key element of the St. Patrick’s Annual Fund is transparency. The Annual Fund will allow donors to designate gifts to a specific area within the operating budget, (ex. “Professional Growth and Development”) or you can designate that your gift be directed to the area of greatest needs as determined by the School. Each year, the Annual Fund Report will specifically outline how funds are allocated and recognize donors, unless they wish to remain anonymous. Donors at certain levels will be invited to hear how the Annual Fund sustains high-quality education at St. Patrick’s School directly from Principal Short.
The initial outpouring of leadership and generosity has demonstrated what a special community St. Patricks is and how grateful our families are for everything the school has done for our children during these unprecedented times. Thank you for continuing to answer the Call!