Who are the ‘Friends of TCAPS’?
We are a group of community volunteers who believe that when our public schools are strong, our kids and our communities will thrive.
We are concerned alumni of Traverse City Schools, parents and engaged community members who have come together to give our local public schools’ additional financial support.
Funding from Lansing has been a trickle for years while the demands and challenges faced by our schools has continued to grow. For pennies a day, we have realized we can help our schools get the resources they need to educate our kids without scrimping.
Why should I consider making a contribution to Friends of TCAPS?
If you believe in public education and recognize that our K-12 schools have been squeezed, you should support Friends of TCAPS with your tax-deductible contribution.
If you are concerned about the future of the Traverse City area and Northern Michigan, you should support Friends of TCAPS and make a difference in the lives of thousands of students.
Why are automatic monthly donations preferred?
When public school systems and their elected leaders can count on our support – consistently – they can accordingly budget the Friends of TCAPS’ financial support.
Consistent monthly donations – layering one supporter on top of the next – helps to eliminate the risk/challenge typically faced by public school leaders when budgeting for the best use of generous, yet non-recurring, one-time donations.
Of course, if recurring monthly donations are not your preference, we’d still love your support.
Are other giving options available?
If recurring monthly donations are not your preference, we’d still love your support. One-time gifts to Friends of TCAPS are great appreciated.
Will the Friends of TCAPS control where the money goes?
Our objective is simple; all of the money raised will be donated directly to TCAPS and will supplement all of the programs of our local schools. In other words, your generous donation will help every child and, indirectly, every program provided by TCAPS.
We’ve purposely designed Friends of TCAPS to minimize any operational burdens within its focused mission.
As a result, we have no grant review committees, no money management expense, no office space, no time-intensive and volunteer-intensive fundraising burdens to fulfill and we have no reliance on major donors, etc…just a simple funding model backed by automatically recurring monthly donations from a very diverse base of supporters.
It is our deep belief that our public schools’ policy oversight and priority-setting should always reside with the voter public and, through them, under the stewardship of our elected members of our board of education.
With that, the focused mission of Friends of TCAPS is simple; to provide a new, innovative supplemental funding source for our local public schools and every student they serve.
Can I direct my donations toward a specific program(s)?
However, TCAPS does have opportunties available for you to direct financial contributions to specific projects or programs or promotional opportunities of your choosing. Visit TCAPS Partners in Education opportunities by clicking here.
Is my donation tax deductible?
Each and every recurring or one-time donation you make to Friends of TCAPS will be accompanied by an automatically generated email confirmation that can be used for your tax records. In the event you lose an email, please contact us or our chosen charitable payment processor, ActBlue Charities.
In choosing our credit and debit card donation processor, we considered their various online reporting tools, their customer service support, their history of operations, their cost to us and their general ease of use in setting up recurring monthly contributions from our donors.
To best fulfill our mission to provide sustainable and meaningful supplemental funding support for TCAPS, we work to minimize the administrative and expense burdens of Friends of TCAPS. Given this, we’re pleased to say that 96.05% your donations processed by ActBlue Charities finds their way toward our mission.
How much of my donation actually finds its way to TCAPS?
As you should expect, in order to maximize our support of TCAPS, we make every effort to minimize any administrative expense burdens on Friends of TCAPS.
As a result, our organization is 100% volunteer-based, has no office expense, has no money management duties or expenses, works to carry a perpetually zero bank balance and stresses word-of-mouth marketing.
In addition, our chosen credit and debit card processor enables 96.05% of donations to go toward our mission; to provide a sustainable and meaningful supplemental funding source for our local public school, Traverse City Area Public Schools (TCAPS.)
Can’t we just pass a tax to support TCAPS’ operations?
No, unfortunately current Michigan law effectively strips the rights of local communities from supplementing the funding of our local public schools’ operational needs through the property tax system.
While TCAPS is allowed to raise property taxes to fund the cost of maintaining the “bricks and mortar” or “capital needs” of our school system, there is NO legal means for our local community to raise property taxes to supplement TCAPS’ operational needs.
Friends of TCAPS, however, has helped us find a way.