is aiming high as it kicks off its "Giving Fund 2013-2014" fundraising campaign at next week's walk-through registrations at area schools.
PPIE’s goals this year are per-student donations of $350 for elementary-aged children, and $200 for those at middle- and high-school levels, said Debi Covello, the foundation's executive director.
The increase from last year's $150 per student is due to costs of the programs deemed important in parent surveys, she explained.
Given the state's hacked education budget, Covello said, "the only proactive solution Pleasanton has to fill this gap in state funding is by means of PPIE's annual Giving Fund."
Last year's PPIE campaign, "Giving Fund 2012-2013," raised nearly to the Pleasanton Unified School District.
Founded in 1987, PPIE stepped up mightily in recent years to avert class-size increases and to raise funds for counseling, reading specialists, library and technology resources -- school programs that were scaled back or lost to budget cuts.
"Over the past few years, PPIE has raised over $1.8 million for these programs on behalf of PUSD and our students," said superintendent Parvin Ahmadi.
"In the last few years, the state has reduced spending on education by
$1,900 per student," Covello said. "When adjusted for inflation, California spends less on education now than any time since the Great Depression."
Covello said other school districts are filling these budget gaps with parcel taxes, averaging $252 per household, or similar education foundations where requested donations are $570 per student.
On-line surveys in May spelled out to PPIE what mattered to Pleasanton parents and where to direct resources, she said.
"Parents told PPIE that class sizes, counselors, reading specialists, technology, physical education, additional class sections and campus supervision are very important to them," Covello said.
PUSD superintendent Ahmadi in recent emails encouraged district families to support PPIE at walk-through registrations.
"We are grateful to our community for the ongoing support of the Pleasanton Education Foundation, which has greatly impacted several important programs that directly benefit our students in Pleasanton each year," Ahmadi said.
PPIE's fundraising is critical for district-wide programs and services that can't be solely funded by schools or parent clubs, Covello said, adding that families' contributions of any amount are meaningful and appreciated.
Donations to the not-for-profit organization are tax deductible and can be made online at www.ppie.org.
For more information on the foundation, its objectives, upcoming fundraisers or volunteer opportunities, visit PPIE's web site.
For details on school registration, see the district's posted information.