Each August as students and staff head back to school, InvestED places an initial round of funding into the InvestED Fund at more than 600 secondary schools in Washington state. The school principal along with two InvestED coordinators (often a counselor or assistant principal) at each building use the InvestED Fund to provide immediate help for students in need. Specific student needs range from school activity cards, musical instruments, appropriate clothing or uniforms, school supplies, and test fees. Schools track program use online and report back to InvestED on exactly how the funds were used and the impact they made on an annual basis. The result is a program with funds available for immediate use with minimal bureaucracy, high accountability and direct impact in student's lives and education.
With a web-based infrastructure in place to provide and track program funds to schools statewide, InvestED encourages schools to seek additional support through our Adopt-A-School and Challenge Matching Programs. The Adopt-a-School program allows donors to designate support to specific schools in the program. The Challenge Matching program provides incentive for schools to raise additional resources for the program's local InvestED fund to serve more students in need.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
InvestED serves over 16,500 students in need each year. Facing growing demand and recognizing a simple solution is often best, InvestED has embarked on a strategic plan to expand the number of students served and help reduce drop-out and “opt-out” rates. Strategic successes include changing from a private foundation to a public charity and renaming our organization to better illustrate our mission, impact and long-term commitment to students in need.
InvestED actively seeks financial support and sponsorship to accomplish our mission from those who share our commitment to provide immediate help for students in need. Current needs also include capacity building support for programming and marketing/social media efforts with a state-wide orientation. With only three FTE staff, we rely heavily upon and greatly appreciate volunteers.