It takes all of us. Every gift makes a difference.
Support of the Annual Fund provides current and future RCDS students with the opportunity to pursue their passions and achieve excellence.
As an independent school, we rely on gifts from our community to help bridge the gap between the cost of an RCDS education and tuition. Annual Giving also allows us to recruit and retain outstanding faculty, offer financial aid to deserving students, and fund programs in the arts, athletics, community service, and sustainability, to name a few.
The RCDS Annual Fund has grown from $841,000 in 1993-94 to over $3.5 million in 2017-18. During this 24-year period, the annual giving program has raised over $60 million for the School, including over $9 million for the RCDS Endowment Fund through the very successful Senior Gift program.
According to National Association of Independent School (NAIS) statistics, RCDS participation levels in annual giving far exceed national averages for independent day schools. For 18 consecutive years, 95 percent or more of current RCDS parents have supported annual giving, compared to just 67 percent nationally. In addition, RCDS alumni participation of 31 percent is more than 20 percentage points higher than the national average for independent day school alumni.
Like most independent day schools, RCDS remains "tuition-driven" as 83 percent of income derives from tuition. The School annually draws 4 percent of a rolling twenty quarter average from the RCDS Endowment Fund. This year, the endowment will provide $2.0 million or 6 percent of the operating budget's income. The RCDS Endowment continues to grow through capital and senior gift campaigns. The School also is debt-free.
Rye Country Day, like other educational institutions, is labor intensive and thus spends the major portion of its budget on salaries and benefits. The Board of Trustees is committed to attracting, supporting, and retaining an outstanding faculty and staff; therefore, competitive salaries and benefits are critical expenditures.
In addition, the Board continues to be committed to supporting the School's various diversity initiatives, including socio-economic diversity, through the RCDS financial aid program, which supports 16% of the study body with $5.6 million in need-based aid. This financial aid program is funded through restricted endowment funds, the operating budget, the RCDS Parents Association, and several other annual giving donations specifically for financial aid.
Annual Giving helps to cover the costs of educating students that exceed tuition. It also supports all areas of the school, including academics, arts, athletics, drama, technology, faculty and staff salaries and benefits, as well as financial aid. Annual gifts are solicited and given every year to support these programs.
Gifts to the Capital Campaign are generally larger pledges that help leave a legacy for future generations. Most gifts are usually made over a three- to five-year period and normally fund bricks and mortar projects, endowment, and significant program enhancements.We kindly ask that you maintain your level of support for Annual Giving while also contributing to the Advancing a Tradition of Excellence Capital Campaign.