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With its new 501(c)3 status, the Palmyra School Foundation Inc. is ready to move forward.
The Palmyra School Foundation, Inc., received the status to operate independently from the Palmyra R-I School District, although the mission is “to generate and distribute resources to enrich teaching, to inspire learning, and to enhance opportunities for the Palmyra R-I School District.”
The idea of a Foundation started several years ago at a Palmyra R-I School Board meeting.
They were aware of foundations for school districts in nearby communities and thought, “Why couldn’t this type of giving opportunity be available to those who support Palmyra students?”
The school board created a list of community people who might consider being a part of organizing such a foundation.
Chris Kempke, University of Missouri Extension County Engagement Specialist, guided the group through the organizational process of completing the application for 501(c)(3) status, creating bylaws, and developing policies and procedures, explained Chuck Keller, president of the board of directors.
Directors were established, and their focus and goal has now transitioned to spreading awareness of the Foundation and to accepting tax-deductible gifts from supporters of students in the Palmyra School District.
The Palmyra School Foundation, Inc. is currently comprised of 12 directors, who manage, supervise and govern the foundation in a non-compensated capacity.
In addition to Keller, current directors include Tav Brown, vice-president; Christine Crawford, Chad Englehardt, Susan Gard, secretary; Kathy Hammond, Rodney Heimer, treasurer; Jennifer Leftwich, David Lewis, Adrienne Lynn, Lori Marquart and Clint Stewart.
Kirt Malone, Palmyra R-I superintendent, and one representative from the Palmyra R-I Board of Education, currently Roth McElvain, serve as ex officio, or nonvoting members.
The end goal for the group is to effectively distribute funds through scholarships to individual students or through grants to teachers to enhance the classroom experience, Keller said.
“The Palmyra School Foundation vision is to build on the excellence of the Palmyra School District by creating lifelong learners and responsible citizens through sustainable community investments.” Keller said. “Opportunities to give may be through a charitable gift to honor a loved one on a special occasion, or as a memorial.”
Another option is to name the Palmyra School Foundation, Inc., in wills or estate plans to meet charitable and tax-planning goals. A founders group is being explored that would generate initial funding.
Funds are separate from the school budget and no currently employed Palmyra R-I faculty or staff may serve on this Board.
Although it’s early in the process the directors are hopeful and passionate to make a positive contribution to the school and ultimately to the Palmyra community.
While the directors are a diverse group, they all are from the Palmyra area. Each would welcome your questions, ideas and/or discussion about the foundation, Keller said, adding questions amy also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.