A Message From the Chair

You have witnessed the historic build of the National Association of Education Foundations, NAEF. I am proud to lead this organization at this defining moment!

We have transitioned the membership of our beloved National School Foundation Association (NSFA) to this new organization giving us the framework for growth and advocacy for our association members. The NSFA organization has now become our philanthropic foundation giving us the ability to raise funds and grants without crippling our advocacy and professional development work. 

At the NAEF our mission is to develop and advocate for education foundations - charter, college, magnet, private, and public. The words are simple but it represents so much. In my 18 years as an education foundation director, I have oftentimes found myself on an island in my community with no one really understanding my unique, yet critical role bridging community investment for the benefit of our students. The NAEF will also strive to connect our members together because we all know that the intangible reward experienced in the relationships with our peers creates an even deeper value.  To this end, I want you to know that this is Your Association.  Associations are only as strong as their members and we need you to own and share our story, your story.  I welcome your questions, musings, and just “do you have a minute,” calls.  Together we are better!

Traci Skalberg, CEFL, CFRM, NAEF Chair

Letter From the Association Administrator

2021 – A year filled with both challenges and victories

The creation of the National Association of Education Foundations, Inc., provides a new structure for the advancement of education foundations and their foundation leaders. It also has filled me with gratitude this year for the dedicated and talented individuals who work tirelessly for education systems across this nation. This new association allows us to expand our efforts to develop and advocate for education foundations.

I appreciate your patience and understanding as we transitioned from NSFA – a charitable association – to NAEF, an association of professionals who lead charter, college, magnet, private, and public education foundations. Our focus will be on the quality of content with adherence to a strategic direction to be implemented by a full board in early 2022. NAEF’s materials, resources, webinars, and programs, both online and in-person, will reflect best practices in the education foundation industry and provide guidance on governance, staffing, funding, marketing, public relations, and compliance, just to name a few.

You are encouraged to make the most of your membership and register for our monthly webinar series. We extend complimentary registration to NAEF members; there is a nominal fee for nonmembers. The webinar series will begin on January 25, 2022 so watch your email for more details!

Emerge. Develop. Excel. This is the theme of our National Conference to be held virtually from March 2 – 4, 2022. This is an excellent opportunity to connect with your peers from across the country, learn from veteran leaders, and share your experience with those new to the field. Detailed information can be found online at the National Conference page. Take advantage of the discounted Early Bird Registration which closes on December 31, 2021.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact us personally and professionally, there is a clearer understanding that we, despite our greatest desire, do not have control over everything. This invisible enemy has a mind unto itself. However, the challenges brought about by this pandemic should provide us with a deeper and genuine appreciation for the valuable contributions of so many people – first responders, doctors, nurses, scientists – all who tirelessly work around the clock to ensure our health and safety. During this holiday season, take a moment to remember and reflect on the commitment of so many who serve others.

May the New Year bring you happiness, good health, and peace.



About the Author

José Boix | Citizen of the Year Finalist | The Daily News

José Boix

José Boix is a board member of the Texas City Independent School District’s Foundation for the Future.

It is Time to Recognize the Work of Education Foundations 
By: José Boix

As we are about to end 2021, an unusual year to say the least, there have been some aspects for which we have to be thankful.

While educators and students struggled with a new and developing educational structure and process, we have been blessed and fortunate to have had the continued support of our education foundations.

Since 1992 when Clear Creek Independent School District established its education foundation, six Galveston County independent school districts have thriving education foundations. These are: Friendswood (1999), Texas City (1999), Galveston (2002), Dickinson (2007), Santa Fe (2010) and Hitchcock (2019).

One key reason for their continued success is that the education foundation model is effective. It is the model developed by Pete Karabatsos, now retired, and followed by most education foundations locally and others throughout many states.

The model has three principal elements:

1. Education foundations are structured as tax- exempt nonprofit organizations, each managed by a board of directors largely composed of independent volunteer members of the community, industry, businesses and civic organizations. Such structure has proven to provide trust, transparency and confidence as an organization.

2. Education foundations share common wording on the mission statements; just consider these excerpted examples developed by some of our local foundations:

  • “In collaboration with the community and the school district, supports a quality education for the district’s students;”
  • To inspire “educational excellence through innovation across the district by securing a wide range of resources through community wide partnerships;” and
  •  “To ensure that all students have successful learning opportunities that help them reach their full potential and add quality throughout their lives.”

3. Education foundations don’t compete against each other but work in unison sharing and assisting each other. As such, the grassroots Greater Houston Area Association of Education Foundations was created about 20 years ago:

  • As a self-managed organization made by about 40 education foundations;
  • Structured as a consortium of tax-exempt education foundations; and
  • With a purpose to provide an effective platform for networking, sharing, developing, and partnering in support of creative and innovative educational programs for both the students and staff personnel of the Greater Houston area independent school districts.

The education foundation model is effective as it brings the team concept, all working with a common goal, which is helping to make education successful for all our students. Education is our future, and education foundations are helping to develop that future.

Therefore, with the advent of the Christmas season, let us take the time to thank the myriad of amazing contributors who support and partner with education foundations, the innumerable teachers and staff, and dedicated staff and board members of all education foundations.

With the spirit of the season, please consider contributing to ensure that the extraordinary work of the education foundations continue. Thank you.

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Promote your Foundation!

One feature of our website is the Member News page designed for you to promote the efforts of your education foundation. We encourage you to share your recent success story which promotes your foundation and shows the importance of the education foundation industry. Send your success story to Info@EducationFoundations.org.

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One of the many benefits of NAEF membership is access to our in-depth Resource Library. We hope this vault of information contains the ideas and content to help you and your foundation. To that end, please consider a contribution to the Resource Library and share your resources with colleagues from across the nation. The Resource Library contains documents on:

  • Organizational Leadership and Planning [IE: Staff policies, Job descriptions, Strategic planning]
  • Marketing [IE: Communication policies, SWOT analysis, Marketing Mix, Digital/Strategic marketing plans]
  • Legal and Financial [By-Laws, Budgets, Policy and Procedure manuals]
  • Resource Development [IE: Fundraising policies, Annual Cycles, Case for Support]
  • Board Development [IE: Roles and Responsibilities, Meeting agenda, Board orientation, Board Evaluations]
  • Collaboration [IE: District Structures, Communication Plans, Budgets, Volunteer Management]
You can email documents for the Resource Library to info@educationfoundations.org.

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Call for Articles

The National Association of Education Foundations is looking for articles for Foundations Today E-Newsletter! We invite you to submit an article appropriate for the education community. All articles must be in an original format (web link or Word document) and should not exceed the 750 word-count maximum. Submit your article via email to info@educationfoundations.org. Please send a headshot and brief bio of the author to be included in the E-Newsletter.

If you are interested in submitting a sponsored article, allowing you to introduce or further explain a product or service to our members, or taking out a banner ad, click here for more information and reach out to us if there are any questions.

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Interested in submitting an article for the next issue?

Email us at: info@educationfoundation.org

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