ANNUAL FUND FAQ
WHy have an annual Fund?
Damariscotta Montessori School’s Annual Fund is the school’s most important source of revenue other than student tuition. It is a vital part of each year’s operating budget, contributing to every part of the school’s operation, such as Classroom Materials, Fine Arts, Faculty Professional Development, Financial Aid/Scholarships, and Technology. Annual Fund gifts enable us to attract and retain the best teachers, provide quality materials, and provide our students with a wide variety of diverse experiences. In brief, these funds are used to run the school.
How Important is the Annual FUnd?
Without the Annual Fund, the Damariscotta Montessori School would need to reduce every budget line item to cover expenses. Unrestricted annual monetary gifts enable DMS to enhance programs and facilities, attract and retain top-notch teachers, and help keep tuition affordable for all families, as well as provide much needed financial assistance.
How important is my participation?
Our goal each year is 100% participation by both the Board of Directors and the Parent Families. DMS community participation is crucial as we seek funds from outside sources, such as grants, foundation gifts, matching programs, gifts from trusts, or gifts from individuals. One important question they ask is, “What percent of your alumni, parents, or Board give to the Annual Fund?” Outside funding sources and individual are much more willing to consider supporting DMS if it is demonstrated that hose who know the school best have generously given to support it.
How can I contribute?
There are many ways to support DMS. You can choose to donate by cash, check or credit card, you may also make a pledge, and/or donate stocks. You may consider making a gift in memory of a loved one or in someone else’s honor such as a child, faculty member, or friend. Click below to donate now:
How much should I give?
Gifts of every size are gratefully appreciated. Only you can determine the amount that is right for you and your family and participation is more important than the amount. Higher participation rates, especially by parents, enables DMS to qualify for foundation grants and other funding. Having said that, we ask that you please give as generously as you can. An investment in the Damariscotta Montessori School is one that will pay life-time dividends for your children, grandchildren or for future generations. In addition, your contribution is 100 % tax deductible.
- Leader: Over $1000+
- Scholar: $250 - $999
- Supporter: $5 - $249
When should I give?
Easy answer is ANYTIME! Our fiscal year ends in June so gifts should be paid in full by June 30, however, the earlier you give or pledge, the sooner our efforts can be focused on finding outside funding.
Why not just raise tuition?
At DMS, we pride ourselves on keeping tuition at an affordable rate for our families. We want Montessori education to be within reach for all midcoast Maine families. If DMS relied solely on tuition income for growth and scholarships, we would price ourselves well beyond the means of most families. In addition, gifts to the Annual Fund are tax-deductible, while tuition is not.
Who supports the Annual Fund?
Each DMS family plays an active role in the school community. Our parents, grandparents, alumni, board members, friends,and staff share the responsibility of meeting the school’s educational goals and ensuring a soundly governed and financially healthy institution. Many donors take advantage of their employers’ matching gifts programs, doubling or tripling gifts to the school.
Who raises money for the Annual Fund Drive?
This effort is volunteer-driven. Gifts are solicited by members of the school community who write letters, send mailings, and work in collaboration with the office, ensuring that 100% of all gifts received go directly to the school.