The Traverse City Record-Eagle reports a new parent organization to help for-profit charter school Grand Traverse Academy formed recently with the mission statement:
To establish and develop a closer connection between school and home by encouraging parental involvement, as well as grow and nurture a close relationship between parents, teachers, and students to support the achievement of excellence in character and academics while ensuring all students are safe, loved, and learning.
The last part of the above run-on sentence contains Dr. Steve Ingersoll’s old catchphrase about “safe, loved, and learning.”
It’s fine that parents want to be more involved with the school their children attend, there’s just one little problem with this new parent organization. They’re asking for donations from the public.
This statement makes it seem like the new family council with their weebly website have been around for years, when in fact they’ve only been active for a couple of weeks. The last part should be read with a great big CAVEAT.
All donations made in cash/check will be tax deductible!
Will be. As in not yet. Grand Traverse Academy Family Council currently has no record of:
Is it illegal to accept donations from the public and businesses without these things? No, but the organization must disclose to the donors that their donations are NOT tax-deductible. Sorry, Grand Traverse Pie Company.
On July 3rd, days after the Record-Eagle article, someone finally pointed out to GTA Family Council there was one little problem with their cunning donation plan:
Most of the required filings and registrations with various government agencies to be an actual nonprofit organization don’t take long at all. However, the one that’s difficult and time consuming is the one that makes you an actual nonprofit organization – the 501(c)(3).
Good luck with that.
Spokesperson for the new group, Danielle Mulholland, says it best in this Record-Eagle quote:
“Everyone is facing budget cuts. Public schools in general are having a hard time. This is a way for parents to have some control over our kids and to help make up for where public funding might be lacking.”
Mulholland is right. Public schools are facing huge budget cuts, but keeping failing for-profit charter schools open does not help public schools in any way. Public funding is lacking because malignant tumors like for-profit charter school GTA continues to divert public school funds away from real public schools. If Mulholland and the rest of the parents of GTA want to help public education, they need to enroll their children into a real public school.
The public school districts in your community would appreciate having your children attend their schools. The increased funding would provide for hiring staff, buying books and supplies, and everything else our public schools struggle to provide with the increasing onslaught of for-profit “education” companies opening more schools and diverting more of our tax dollars into their private bank accounts.
Maybe the parents of GTA will read this and go to the meeting on July 10 with some important questions to ask this new parent council.