Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tuition Program -- A New Thought...Simplified Endowment Funds!

Yesterday, I posted about the new Tuition Program Pilot for schools in the Archdiocese of Washington.

Today, I would like to recommend to that the Archdiocese help every school to create an Endowment Fund.

Currently, the Archdiocese requires that a minimum of $1,000,000 of principle in an Endowment Fund before the revenue generated can be used. It is my gut feeling that the number is set very high to discourage parishes from investing in a specific school, versus investing in all of the schools.

However, I would strongly recommend that the $1,000,000 mark be reduced to $250,000. By reducing the amount, it gives the parishioners and parents of a school a very achievable goal.

But more importantly, it fosters a sense of community among them -- this is our school and we will do what ever it takes to make our school a strong and viable part of our community and of the Archdiocese.

In addition, the rules dealing with the generated revenue should be modified: 50% can be spent on the school, while the other 50% must be put back into the Fund. In this manner, parents and parishioners see that money is flowing back into the school, while at the same time increasing the base fund.

Even if a school generates $6,000 in income in the first year of reaching that goal, with $3,000 flowing into operations, it reduces the burden on the Archdiocese. (Yes, it is a small amount but every penny helps.)

When and if the fund reaches the million dollar mark, then all of the revenue generated can be used for the school.

Let’s think out of the box and not make fundraising for schools so difficult.

Anyone in Hyattsville wants to discuss further, I would love to hear from you.


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Anonymous said...

I understand that St. John the Evangelist in Silver Spring has a $1 million endowment and St. Jude School in Rockville has a $1.6 million endowment. The pastors who started these initiatives are great heroes, since generations of children can benefit. St. Elizabeth School in Rockville has nearly set aside the $1 million for its endowment.


However, it is not simply the pastor's who need to be thanked but the parents and parishoners who spent countless hours and donated $$$ to each of these funds. When a parish has a real sense of Catholic community, then these things can get done.

However, in each of these cases, the endowment was a min. of $1m before any of the revenue could be used.