The groundwork and concept of the Fargo Public Schools Development Foundation were originally approved in 1993 through action of the Board of Education. It was not until April of 2000, however, when a full-time executive director was hired.
The Foundation continues to operate with just two full-time staff, which allows 85 cents out of every donated dollar to go to direct programs benefiting FPS students.The Foundation is supported with annual gifts from parents, district staff, businesses, service clubs, alumni, and the general community, as well as with planned gifts and bequests to our endowment fund.
In addition, the school district assists with operational funding and in-kind support as the Foundation continues to move toward fiscal self-sufficiency. In North Dakota, there are other public school foundations in Grand Forks, Minot, Bismarck, Devils Lake and other communities. Across the United States there are hundreds of public school foundations, most established within the past 10 to 15 years. In the majority of cases, the foundations were formed to identify and solicit private donations to supplement traditional sources of funding from local, state and federal programs.
Public school foundations have typically been set-up as nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organizations, separate from the local district administration and boards of education. Guided by their own board of directors, the foundations often support alumni associations, provide grants to teachers and schools, and assist with programs designed to increase business/community involvement in the schools. They typically do not provide funding for programs or budget items deemed as the responsibility of the district. The Fargo Public Schools Development Foundation is governed by its own Board of Directors representative of the community and a variety of constituencies. The Foundation received its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service in December 2000. Donations to the Foundation are tax deductible.
Fargo Public Schools Development Foundation * 1305 9th Avenue South * Fargo, ND 58103