Chappaqua School Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt foundation run by a Board of Directors comprised of local volunteers. It works closely with the CCSD Board of Education and administration; a member of the school board and the Superintendent are non-voting members of the CSF Board.
How CSF Works
CSF was established in 1993 to fund the creative project ideas of teachers, administrators, parents and students. Typically, CSF issues a request for grant applications and a variety of grant applications are submitted by January of the school year (see Apply for a Grant). In parallel, CSF works to raise funds from the community through appeals, hosting the Wizards basketball game and its Spring Benefit. In March, the CSF Board typically determines which grants it will fund based on their merit and available funds and announces its decisions in May.
Grants and Projects
CSF has raised $3.0 million and funded over 270 grants and projects, ranging from Kindergarten Bookpacks to anti-bullying programs to sustainable middle school gardens to robotics programs to over 45 SMART Boards across the District (see Grants Summary). In the 2009-10 academic year, the District asked whether CSF could underwrite the purchase and installation of SMART Boards in all third-grade classrooms; CSF completed fundraising in just eight weeks.
CSF continues to evolve. As the challenges of school budgets and property taxes increase, CSF’s mission to support programs that can’t be funded within the school budget becomes more vital. As with the third grade SMART Board project, CSF and the school District collaborate closely to identify significant strategic priorities for the schools that are at risk or not funded. CSF recognizes that over 75% of the District budget is allocated to critical ‘fixed’ costs such as salaries, transportation, supplies and maintenance, much of which increases annually (some as a result of State mandates). Discretionary spending is squeezed. Little remains to support innovation or possibly even programs that are important but are not core academically.
Why contribute to CSF? Especially in a high-tax district? Whether a parent of a student or a resident without children in the District schools, ensuring the continuing leading-edge excellence of our schools is critical for our kids’ education as well as for property values in our community.
CSF and HGSF – Why You Should Consider Contributing To Both!
Our community is fortunate to have two active volunteer organizations that work hard to support education. They have different and complementary missions. But they are frequently viewed either interchangeably or without an understanding of their distinct purposes. The Boards of both organizations encourage our entire community to support both organizations, and have placed this webpage on each organization’s website to help foster success for both.
Chappaqua School Foundation (CSF) funds projects and programs for K-12 in all schools that will meaningfully enhance the education of Chappaqua students but that cannot be supported within the District budget
Horace Greeley Scholarship Fund (HGSF awards financial needs-based grants for college to students who have a financial gap after all other loans, awards and family financial resources have been exhausted
CSF provides a safety net for innovation within the school system itself, an especially important role when the District budget faces so many challenges. HGSF provides a safety net for Greeley graduates and their families, so that they can fulfill their college aspirations made possible by the excellence of their Chappaqua education.
Both CSF and HGSF are 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations, run by volunteer Boards. Both incur minimal overhead expenses. Both raise funds through local events, mailings and personal solicitation.
To help ensure the excellence of education for all Chappaqua students, and to help ensure that those students can attend the college of their choice, both CSF and HGSF are worthy causes for community philanthropy.
Help us help your kids and our schools! Please consider a contribution as well as volunteering your time.