Initiative 4: Long-Term Financial Sustainability
Ensure the long-term financial sustainability of our school in order to attract and retain students, faculty and staff who want to be a part of our success.
Valley Christian High School has a rich history of generous contributions of time, talent, and treasure. It started with moving from a church building to a strip mall and now to our current campus. It continues today through the countless volunteer hours and generous financial gifts throughout the year.
A long-term fundraising strategy is important in order to sustain – and improve – the work we are doing at Valley Christian High School. A school that is financially thriving is able to attract and retain students and families that want to be a part of our success. Keeping tuition affordable, having a greater impact and influence on our students, and increasing the value and quality of our product are all critical components of our success. Each are driven by a thriving and sustainable financial model, which includes significant fundraising.
As we begin to look toward the next 35 years of our history, our primary focus is on “Sustainability.” We believe in what God has done, is doing, and will do at Valley Christian. We are committed not only to our current students and families, but to the next generation as well.
With the guidance of the Board and the diligence of the Administration, last year—for the first time—the school ran a balanced budget. This means we no longer need to raise funds to “fill the gap” between what it costs to educate each student and what we charge in tuition.
Besides a balanced budget, our sustainability plan includes a newly-established Endowment Fund, increased resources on STO education and solicitation, professional development, and an increased focus on developing long-term relationships with our community.
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Activities and Accomplishments
Valley Christian Schools has a rich history of generous contributions of time, talent, and treasure. It started with moving from a church building to a strip mall and now to our current campus. It continues today through the countless volunteer hours and generous financial gifts throughout the year. A long-term fundraising strategy is important in order to sustain – and improve – the work we are doing at VCS.
Since releasing our strategic plan, we have enacted a number of measures to promote the long-term financial sustainability of VCS:
Short-term (5-year) and long-term (10-15 years) measurements for sustainability
The school’s administration, in conjunction with the Board of Directors, identified 11 measurables, both short-term and long-term, to determine our effectiveness in setting up VCS for long-term financial sustainability. This includes the number of donors in the Champions Circle, alumni giving percentages, goals for the VCS Endowment Fund, financial reserves, and more.
Our Champions Circle is a long-term giving society that promotes significant gifts ($1,000 or more) for multiple years (5 years or more). Through the first two years of soliciting Champions Circle members, we now have 62 Champions Circle members who have pledged more than $470,000 to VCS.
An annual, balanced budget
Many Christian schools budget for a deficit each year, then attempt to make up the shortfall with fundraised dollars by the end of the year. Since 2015-16, VCS has operated with a balanced budget, meaning fundraising no longer “fills the gap,” but instead is used specifically to add/improve programs and to add value to each student’s experience at VCS.
A reserve fund
Since launching our strategic plan, the school has been able to put significant dollars into a reserve fund. This reduces the risk of the school in case of an emergency, while also providing resources for growth and expansion.
VCS Endowment Fund
The VCS Endowment Fund was established shortly before our strategic plan was announced and currently has a balance of more than $75,000. The fund exists in order to better prepare the school for any and all financial situations in the future.
Valley Christian Junior High
By opening our junior high, we not only extend the VCS brand by 3 additional years, but we create our own “feeder school,” helping to ensure healthy enrollment at our high school for years to come.
The Valley Christian Schools Association
We believe there are numerous Christian families who have yet to consider Christian education. We started the VCSA in order to strengthen our partnership with our preferred Christian feeder schools in the Valley. This partnership helps us to offer even better Christian education options in the East Valley by working better together.