Inspire. Dream. Achieve.

Age 3 through 8th grade

Annual Fund

The Annual Fund is an ongoing fundraising effort coordinated by the Development Office, and it represents one of the most important ways that you can help The Independence School continue to provide an exceptional educational experience that remains an exceptional value for families.

Gifts to the Annual Fund impact every student in every grade all year long. The Annual Fund is used to ensure that we offer a learner-centered environment with innovative and relative curriculum, that we recruit and retain the most dedicated, caring and talented faculty and that we foster opportunities for exploration and leadership development in the arts, athletics and service learning.

We ask all members of the Independence Family, including parents, faculty, alumni, grandparents and friends, to support our students by giving to the Annual Fund. Your participation is important, and every gift, regardless of the amount, is vital.

You can choose to give your gift to the Independence Fund, a completely unrestricted fund designed so that donors can support the areas of greatest need at our school, including financial aid, facility maintenance and renovation, technology upgrades and faculty support, to name a few. The Independence Fund gives our leadership the most flexibility to remain a top-notch school in this competitive educational environment. You may also choose to designate your gift to one of the following areas about which you are passionate: Athletics and Physical Education, Library and Technology, Professional Development for Faculty, Tuition Assistance, and Visual and Performing Arts.

100% of our faculty, staff and board members make a gift to the Annual Fund every year. Won’t you join them in supporting our students by making a gift today?

“Over the years, our decision to invest in the advantage of the education and experience of The Independence School has been reinforced many times. … My time as a volunteer and our family contributions to the Annual Fund – all in support of our teachers and exceptional learning opportunities for our children – both have been well spent.”
ANN BALTHIS BRENDAN '15 AND BRETT '17

ANNUAL FUND FAQS

How is The Independence School Funded?

The school’s yearly operating budget is supported by tuition, income from our endowment, revenue from Summer at Independence and other programs, and donations from our generous community. Philanthropic gifts to the Annual Fund, as well as proceeds from the annual auction, make up the difference between the actual cost of delivering an exceptional Independence education and the income received through tuition and the endowment.

Why doesn’t tuition cover the full cost of educating a student?

Like most independent schools, tuition at Independence only covers approximately 87 percent of the actual cost of educating a student. The school simply could not charge the full cost without limiting the number of qualified students who could afford to attend. We seek to make Independence as affordable as possible for as many families as possible. This helps optimize enrollment and maintain a diverse student body that remains an important part of our community culture and the Independence experience. In addition, donations to the Annual Fund are tax-deductible and, therefore, benefit families more than simply raising tuition.

How much should I contribute to the Annual Fund?

We ask all families to contribute to the Annual Fund at any amount that is appropriate for them. A gift of any size to the Annual Fund makes a difference in the lives of our students. Your participation represents a vote of confidence in our school and sends a message to the community and other donors that you believe in the success of Independence.

When should I give?

We encourage individuals and families to pledge and make gifts early in the school year (between September and December). Early donations translate into lower administrative and communications costs per dollar raised. Annual Fund contributions directly affect our operating budget. By letting us know in the fall that we can count on your support this year, we can budget accordingly and ensure that all of our programs and activities are fully funded. You may, however, give at any time during our fiscal year, which runs from July 1 through June 30 each year.

Will I be asked to give more than once? What about the Auction and IPA fundraisers?

The Annual Fund drive is concentrated in the fall and then again in the spring. However, we encourage everyone to make a gift or pledge prior to Dec. 31. A pledge can be paid any time prior to the end of our fiscal year on June 30.

In addition to the Annual Fund, Independence requests donations and your attendance at the annual auction in March. All proceeds from the auction directly benefit the school.

The Independence Parents’ Association (IPA) runs as a separate organization that raises money to benefit all students, and it holds fundraisers throughout the year, such as Family Bingo Night and May Fair. Proceeds from these events are given back to the school at the end of the year and used to purchase yearbooks for each student, grade-level field trips and cultural experiences such as bringing in guest authors and speakers.

Can I direct my gift to a specific area? How will I know the impact of my gift?

Yes, you have the option to designate your gift toward several different areas, including Athletics and Physical Education, Library and Technology, Professional Development for Faculty, Tuition Assistance, and Visual and Performing Arts. However, you can also choose to give to the general Independence Fund, which is designed so that donors can support the areas of greatest need. These unrestricted funds give school leadership the most amount of flexibility. They go directly to what is needed most in an academic year and can include expenses such as financial aid, academic and extracurricular support, new educational initiatives, faculty support, and facility renovations and upkeep. There may also be opportunities throughout the year at the discretion of the Head of School to support special priorities, such as the Innovation Station and Imagination Playground.

We know that by choosing to donate to the Annual Fund, you are choosing to invest in the success of our students and faculty, and we will strive to demonstrate throughout the year the impact of the Annual Fund. Specifically, you can expect an “Impact Report” to be sent to all donors at the end of the fiscal year detailing how the Annual Fund was used to benefit all students, as well as communications throughout the year in the Patriot Page e-Newsletter and Spirit Magazine about how donations are used.

How may I give?

There are many ways for you to make an investment in The Independence School:

  • By mail
  • Secure gift online via credit card
  • Appreciated securities and bonds - call the Development Office at 302-234-9715 for more information.
  • By phone - call the Development Office with your credit card information.
  • You are always welcome to stop by the Development Office with your gift.
  • Increase your gift with a matching gift from an employer-sponsored program. Contact your HR representative to find out if your company has a matching gift program and ask him or her to provide you with the necessary form, which you may complete, sign and send to the school with your gift.