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Grantmaking Policies


Additional Requirements for Start-Up Pre-Schools & Kindergartens

The Trustees require that all applicants seeking support for new schools include the following elements in their application:

  1. Applicants need an economic business plan that is deemed viable by our trustees. Describe your lines of business. Of course, your primary line of business is care and education of young children. However, you may have parent education, staff development as a continuing program, food service (not just for your own clients, maybe other organizations as well). Also, after school care might be seen as a separate business line. How will your school be funded beyond its first year?

  2. The proposed school must demonstrate substantial support from its local community, its sponsoring organization (if any), and a wide range of foundations, individuals, and businesses or corporations, where possible, and government, if applicable. Note that the Samuel N. & Mary Castle Foundation rarely funds more than 10-25% of any project.

  3. The proposed school should develop a plan for meeting NAEYC accreditation standards within a certain number of years, continuing teacher training, a plan for parent education and involvement, and outcomes assessment for its educational product(s).

  4. The proposed project must have all licenses, building permits and evidence of a satisfactory lease arrangement (or land ownership) before applying. Please note that it is the policy of the Foundation to require evidence of a signed lease of at least 5 years duration before making application. This is true of new building applications of all kinds including renovation of existing facilities, facility expansion, or new school start-up.

  5. New school applicants must show evidence of meeting a real community need in a way which is responsive to community, families, local cultures, etc. The Foundation also prefers that all pre-K directors receive appropriate management training in all aspects of fiscal and curricular management, staff development, assessment (in general), and working with their board as well as working collaboratively, where feasible, with other pre-schools and associations.