Why do we need an Education Foundation in San Ramon Valley?
Due to a lack of adequate state funding, Education Foundations are the norm in CA. Foundations like the San Ramon Valley Education Foundation allow families to further invest in public education, by making a tax-deductible gift.
In the 1960s, California public schools ranked nationally within the top 5 per pupil funding. We had some of the most well-funded schools in the country! After a series of voter decisions in the 1970s and 1980s (Prop 13 and 98), coupled with the recession of 2008, the funding of schools in California schools is now in the bottom 10.
San Ramon Valley Unified School District receives the lowest funding per student of all unified school districts. There are 5 other unified districts lower than SRVUSD – their Average Daily Attendance range from 2,496 to 6,294 compared to our 30,971.
Public education funding is highly complex. If you are looking for a deeper understanding Ed100.org provides a thorough and profound explanation.
Here are some of the most common questions we often hear:
Frequently Asked Questions
I thought my property taxes cover the cost of education
Property taxes are not the main source of funding for CA schools, despite what people may think. About 25% of the funding for public schools in CA comes from property taxes, which also support other local government functions.
The biggest source of funding for our schools is the income taxes we all pay. Local communities in CA have very limited options for raising local revenue for schools. Other states don’t have these same restrictions.
What about the federal government? Lottery?
What about San Ramon Valley Unified School District?
The San Ramon Valley Unified School District (SRVUSD) receives amongst the lowest funding per student of unified school districts in the State of California! In 2021-22, SRVUSD was the 6th lowest funded unified districts and the lowest of unified districts with more than 6500 students.
I donate to my local school. Isn’t that enough?
First, thank you for donating. Every little bit helps.
But donating to your local school is not the same as supporting the San Ramon Valley Education Foundation. They are separate organizations – sometimes they refer to themselves as Ed Funds, Learning Funds, Boosters, etc. Donations to your local school typically funds specific needs for that school, as determined by the principal, teachers, parents and even students.
SRVEF funds District-wide priorities addressing the greatest need in an equitable and consistent manner. SRVEF funds programs that benefit the entire District in wide-ranging areas such as teacher training, innovative classroom programs, music and science supplies and equipment.
SRVEF also provides enrichment opportunities for students from across the district during summer and school breaks.
If your family can, we ask that you donate to both SRVEF and your local school. We are both important and are both needed.
What else can we do?
As a taxpayer, community member, or a parent there is a lot that you can do.
- Donate to SRVEF to help SRVUSD continue to provide programs that exceed the basic minimum the State of CA provides.
- Volunteer for and/or attend SRVEF events.
- Lobby your elected representatives to prioritize school funding for all students.
We have answers.
What is the San Ramon Valley Education Foundation?
- The San Ramon Valley Education Foundation (SRVEF) is a non-profit organization and a fundraising entity established in 1982 to promote public education in the San Ramon Valley.
- SRVEF’s mission is to invest in education, support parent organizations, and engage our community for the benefit of and in partnership with the San Ramon Valley Unified School District.
- SRVEF’s all-volunteer board consists of dedicated community members who believe in and know the importance of funding our public schools. SRVEF is also supported by a small paid staff. SRVEF is led by a full-time Executive Director and several part-time managers: Operations Manager, Sponsorship Manager, and Programs Manager (Imagineering, Run for Education).
Is my donation tax deductible?
Should I donate to the SRVEF General Fund or the Endowment Fund?
- Both funds support SRVUSD public education.
- SRVEF general fund is short-term in nature. Donations are typically spent within a year or two based on immediate needs . As a result, there is a call for continual fundraising efforts to respond to those needs.
- The Endowment Fund intent is to provide long-term and stable local funding for district wide efforts that need 2-5 years of support. It is designed to accumulate funds over a long period of time and draw off the interest each year.
What has SRVEF funded in recent years? What about the Endowment Fund?
Regardless of the funding source, the process is the same. SRVEF works collaboratively with SRVUSD leadership to identify the highest priority needs within our schools. The decision process begins with SRVUSD presenting an array of options to the SRVEF Board and Endowment Committee in early Spring. Funding decisions are then made for the following school year.
Recently funded by the SRVEF Endowment fund include:
- Cultural Relevant Music Instruction
- Generation Citizen
- Professional Development
Recently funded by SRVEF:
- Grants for Teachers district wide
- Grants for Elementary School Supplies
- Grants to all Elementary Music Programs
Does my SRVEF donation go to my student’s school?
- We fund efforts that impact a wide range of needs, as identified by the SRVUSD Leadership team.
- Every school in the SRVUSD benefits from SRVEF and Endowment funding, whether from the professional development opportunities we support, the music instruments we have purchased, individual teacher grants that are funded, or Science Fair and other student programs that are offered.
- SRVEF however, does not directly fund individual school needs – that is the role of the school’s individual fundraising organization.
Are funds invested equitably across the district? Among schools?
Yes! Equity, and inclusion are at the heart of everything we do at SRVEF. SRVEF’s core belief is that all students are entitled to a quality education. Donations to SRVEF are invested equitably in each student at all levels to ensure a well-funded education from grades TK to 12.
Donations ensure programs like science, the arts, math support, elective classes, and teacher professional development reflect student interest, wellness programs, and more.
I do not have students attending SRVUSD Schools – Why should I donate?
SRVUSD is a destination district. Beautiful campuses, high test scores and student achievement, and excellent academic, cultural and sports programs draw new families to the community each year. The result is community pride, higher home values, and a better public education for our students .If you don’t currently have a student but will – you are investing in your children’s future. If you did, then you know how important your donation is to the future of children and the community.
How can I make my donation go further through corporate matching?
Many companies match charitable donations from their employees, which can double, or even triple the amount that SRVEF receives as a result of your donation.
To find out whether your company offers a corporate matching gift program, search here or check with your company’s Human Resources department. If you have questions about how to make a matching donation to SRVEF, contact us at [email protected] and we will be happy to assist you.
Did we miss anything? Do you have more questions?
Please email us at [email protected] if you have any questions.