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MBEF Annual Appeal Deadline Draws Near

Feb 04, 2019 10:19AM ● By Jeanne Fratello

2018/2019 MBEF Funded Programs

Potential donors take note: The Manhattan Beach Education Foundation's Annual Appeal is closing in on its February 8 deadline.

The Annual Appeal, which began in August, is considered the most significant fundraiser of the year. MBEF has a goal of raising $5 million for the 2018-19 Annual Appeal.

This $5 million goal would make up the bulk of MBEF's fundraising, though other events and fundraisers also help MBEF fund its programs. For the current school year, MBEF has awarded a total of $6.2 million in grants for Manhattan Beach Unified School District programs.

"The viability of the programs that MBEF funds is dependent upon the success of the Annual Appeal each year," said Hilary Mahan, executive director of MBEF. "The $5 million we raise, combined with funds from additional grants, sponsorships and events, is what is takes to sustain the $6.2 million in grants. Without parent support from each school community, we would lose programs that we have come to rely on."

Mahan noted that the Annual Appeal is currently $500,000 short of its goal.

"I think we tend to forget how impactful MBEF grants are on our students every day," said Mahan. "Since 1983, MBEF has granted over $70 million to enrich our public schools in Manhattan Beach. We don’t ever consider what it would be like to lose the programs that our kids rely on to strengthen their academics and develop their passions."

MBEF's suggested donation is $1,750 per student, but families are urged to give at a meaningful level that they are comfortable with. 

MBEF's Role

Since its founding more than 30 years ago, MBEF has played a significant and increasingly vital role in funding for the Manhattan Beach Unified School District.

Unlike other states where counties decide how much to allocate to education, legal rulings in the 1980s shifted per pupil funding to the state level in California. This significantly impacted Manhattan Beach by limiting its ability to manage how property taxes would benefit education. California education funding remains among the lowest in the country, and MBUSD is among the lowest in the state.

Without the community's investment in MBEF, Manhattan Beach schools would lack many of the programs its students need for a well-rounded education.

Of this year's $6.2 million in grants, 27% went to counseling and student support; 26% went to class size reduction; 15% went to STEM programs; 14% went to reading, writing, and libraries; 10% went to music and the arts; 6% went to physical education; 1% went to teacher innovation and awards; and 1% went to program assessment and student outcomes.

To contribute to MBEF, please visit MBEF's donation page.

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