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ACT NOW: Barton Matching Funds
Thursday, May 04, 2017 8:30 AM

Barton Matching Funds

Dear Barton Community,

We are writing today with an urgent request for help to close the gap in Barton’s fundraising for this year. We want to thank you for the Fund donations, the FUNdraiser ticket purchasing, and all the green plants you sold or bought to financially support our school. Your involvement and support at Barton is what makes our progressive school strong and focused on the whole child.  Despite these efforts, the Barton Foundation is still at least $15,000 behind what is needed to fully fund the programs and services it usually supports. This shortfall is mostly due to significantly fewer direct donations to the Barton Fund this school year, partly because there wasn’t a big push in the fall, and partly because corporate matches are down. Barton is currently in the middle of the Foundation budgeting process for next year, and we are facing some very difficult choices given the reduced amount of money available. Money raised this year pays for programming next year. If Barton doesn’t make up this shortfall now — before the end of this school year — we will see cuts to some important programs and services offered at Barton.

To help us reach this $15,000 goal as quickly as possibly, a small group of donors within the community has committed to match donations up to the first $6,000, doubling your contribution. Please make a gift today.

The Barton Foundation pays for a variety of programs and services Barton considers essential to our children’s educational experience that are not covered by the district. At the April 20th Leadership Council meeting, the council approved funding a part-time reading assistant educator, and a part-time teacher emeritus for Uppers math support. This enabled our administration to move ahead and start seeking candidates for those positions. The council agreed to hold off on the remaining budget decisions until the May meeting, to give more time to consider how to prioritize the many items that still need funding.

These are the items that are at stake. Currently, the Barton Foundation does not have enough money to pay for them all. However, if we can raise the needed funds now, we will be able to continue to fund all of these.

  • Fine arts performances (for example, Sinfonia, storytelling, author visits, drumming)
  • Field trip scholarship support (so all students can attend field trips)
  • Middles overnight trip to Camp St. Croix (the Fund helps to keep the cost of this outdoor learning opportunity reasonable for families)
  • Classroom teacher supply funds (last year each teacher was given $200 for classroom materials; in previous years the amount was higher)
  • Media center and technology
  • School-wide art supplies
  • Equipment for gym and recess
  • School-wide events such as the Kindergarten Dinner
  • Childcare for families who want to attend Barton 101 sessions, Leadership Council meetings, and other school meetings that take place after school
  • Student directory and Barton handbook
  • Handwriting Without Tears curriculum
  • Student leadership funds (helps students make impacts in the building)
  • Principal funds for in-year proposals

All of these programs are building blocks of Barton’s progressive community and Open magnet school. Each contributes to the collaborative, inclusive, and diverse culture at Barton. Field trips provide experiential learning and outdoor classroom experiences. Fine arts ensure the left and right sides of the brain are challenged and inspired. School-wide events build community, and Barton prides itself on removing barriers to attend by offering taxi services and childcare. It is the mission of the Barton Foundation to support the development of an active learner in a global world. We urge you to continue to provide our children with these unique experiences the district does not fund by donating today.

The fate of these programs will be determined by what you donate by Wednesday, May 17.  

Whether you give $5 or $5,000, every donation matters. As always, your gift is 100% tax-deductible. Donations can be dropped off at the Barton office by cash or check (written to “Barton Foundation”), or you can use your credit card on the Barton Foundation website (www.bartonopen.org). Please give before May 17 to avoid any Barton programs being eliminated for the 2017-2018 school year. Any donations that come in May 18 through June 30 will be added to the budget in the fall and can go toward reinstating items that couldn’t be funded on May 18. Please be as generous as you can. (When you donate, please see if you are eligible for an employer match.)

If you have questions, please contact Diane Bagley at diane.bagley@mpls.k12.mn.us or 612-668-3586, or Sheila Eldred at seldred@gmail.com.

Thank you in advance for your generosity. In partnership, we can ensure Barton can continue providing our children with a strong, progressive educational experience, so they are ready for the world.

Sincerely,

 

Interim Principal, Cindy Mueller, and Assistant Principal, Diane Bagley

Leadership Council Staff & Parent Co-chairs, Patty Campbell and Sheila Eldred

Barton Foundation President, Tom Hockenberry, and Barton Foundation Treasurer, Eric Sumner

Chairs of Barton Plant Sale, Tony Siebenaler-Ransom and Brenda Johnson

Chairs of Somali Family Committee, Yassin Qanyare, Nasra Hassan, Nima Abdirahman, and Hawo Hassan

Chair of Barton FUNdraisers, Elizabeth Christensen

Chair of 2017-18 Barton Fund, Meg Paschall


P.S. Because this need is so vital, we are sending the message both by email and as a printed letter in the children’s backpacks.