The MICDS Annual Fund

MICDS is an independent school and operates without financial support from the federal or state government.  MICDS relies on tuition, endowment income and Annual Fund contributions to meet operating expenses. MICDS offers an extraordinary educational experience that goes above and beyond academics. Each and every student discovers his or her full potential and succeeds beyond expectations. Annual Fund gifts are needed to help the School reach its educational goals and to carry out its mission of preparing students for lives of purpose and service.

List of 12 frequently asked questions.

  • Q: What is the Annual Fund?

    A: The Annual Fund provides unrestricted operating support for the School's budget.  Annual Fund gifts bridge the gap between the cost of tuition and the actual cost to educate each student.  In 2017-2018 that gap is approximately $1,700 per student.  Each year, the MICDS Annual Fund contributes approximately 6% of all operating revenues available to the School.  All Annual Fund gifts are 100% tax deductible and they provide the School with the flexibility to respond to changing circumstances and to take advantage of new opportunities.
  • Q: What does the Annual Fund support?

    A: Approximately 70% of the School's operating budget supports salaries and benefits for our faculty and staff, so the largest portion of your gift will directly benefit our talented faculty. In addition, Annual Fund gifts support a variety of programs, including academics and curriculum, faculty development, arts, athletics, college counseling, technology, the library, student need-based financial assistance, and facility maintenance. The Annual Fund allows us to say "YES!" when an opportunity for our students presents itself, such as implementing the Math in Focus program in the Lower School, growing the library acquisitions and program in the Middle School, and developing a robust robotics program in the Upper School.
  • Q: How much should I give?

    Every single gift matters and makes a difference. We celebrate the support of parents, alumni, grandparents, parents of alumni, and faculty and staff whose high participation rates combine to make a significant impact on our students. Last year, over 2,600 individuals gave $1,860,900 to the Annual Fund. 

    Strong parent participation makes a statement to our external community who look at these numbers when considering their own support. We strive to have 100% participation from each class and urge all parents, while their children are benefiting from all that MICDS offers, to make the School their top philanthropic priority. Leadership gifts of $2,000 or more are recognized as part of the MICDS Society and make up over 73% of all dollars raised (see below). Gifts range in size from $5 to over $20,000, and the average parent gift in 2016-2017 was $1,273.

    How Your Support Makes a Difference 2017-2018
    Total cost to educate a student: $27,840
    Tuition & Fees (*): $21,770
    Annual Fund: $1,560
    Endowment Income: $3,160
    Other Income: $1,360

    (*) This figure is an average of all three divisions.

  • Q: How do Parents support the Annual Fund?

    As a parent at MICDS, you have fully invested in your child’s future. You made a deliberate choice to commit your resources and time to give your child access to premiere faculty, unparalleled academic programs, and best-in-class facilities. It's why many parents value the significance of this investment and choose to give to MICDS. We urge all parents, while their children are taking advantage of all that MICDS offers, to make MICDS their top philanthropic priority.

    2017-2018 Parent Leadership
    Parent Annual Fund Campaign Chair
    Bob Koplar '98
    Parent Division Chairs
    Stacy Haberstroh
    Kristin Matisziw
    Page Melton Ivie
    Andrea Miller
    Mary Paine
    Lisa Prinster-Messey

    Parent Class Representatives
    Christina Cerna
    Rachel & Jack Oliver
    Shvetha & Paul Zarek

  • Q: How do Alumni support the Annual Fund?

    A: While the Annual Fund does not construct new buildings, it does make what goes on inside those buildings possible. What alumni treasured as students - extraordinary faculty, a varied, wide-ranging curriculum, outstanding arts program, top of the line technology, numerous extra-curricular activities and sports, and other unlimited opportunities - would disappear without alumni support of the Annual Fund.

    Your education was made possible because generations of alumni, parents and friends supported the School through the Annual Fund. Alumni support of the Annual Fund enables this generation of students to embrace the principles of our mission statement and to participate in our important traditions. Every gift today plays a key role in continuing the legacy of philanthropy and educational excellence that are the hallmarks of MICDS.

    Reunion Giving is another opportunity to show support for MICDS as a class. Everyone celebrating a milestone reunion this year is asked to strive to reach new heights in terms of what they raise for the School while also seeking maximum participation in their reunion class gift. For more information, please contact Elizabeth Moore Coulter '08 at 314-995-7416 or

    2017-2018 Alumni Leadership
    CDS Alumni Chair: Dave Gulick '72
    MI Alumnae Chair: Middy Perkins '88
    MICDS Alumni Co-Chairs: Andrew Levine '02, Lindsey Herzog '07 and Claire Herzog '11
  • Q: How do Young Alumni support the Annual Fund?

    A: Each year, we conduct MICDS Madness, a 15-day giving challenge for the classes of 1994-2013. Last year we achieved 30% participation from our young alumni classes, with the winning class taking the lead with 69% participation. Any young alum who makes a gift for three or more consecutive years is recognized as part of our Rams Loyalty Club. We appreciate each and every gift; your support truly makes a difference.

    Reunion Giving is another opportunity to show support for MICDS as a class. Everyone celebrating a milestone reunion this year is asked to strive to reach new heights in terms of what they raise for the School while also seeking maximum participation in their reunion class gift. For more information on Reunion Giving, please contact Elizabeth Moore Coulter at 314-995-7416 or
  • Q: Who else supports the Annual Fund?

    A: Each year, grandparents, faculty and staff, parents of alumni, and friends give generously to help fulfill the School's mission. They have seen first-hand the benefits of an MICDS education. In 2016-2017, 100% of our Board of Trustees and 95% of our faculty and staff made a gift to the Annual Fund. In addition, several corporations have matching gift programs which support MICDS through charitable contributions. 

    2017-2018 Grandparent Leadership
    Penelope & John Biggs
    Catherine Bollinger

    2017-2018 Parent of Alumni Leadership
    Mary Ann Wymore
    Callaway & Michael Zuccarello
  • Q: How do I support the Bold Action Campaign?

    Philanthropy is the lifeblood of any private, independent school and is essential to the daily operation of MICDS, where tuition only covers 80% of costs.  There is no single gift more important to MICDS than a gift to the Annual Fund.  In tandem with your gift to the Annual Fund, you will also support Bold Action: A Campaign for MICDS.  A multi-year commitment has the most impact as it ensures a steady stream of support for the duration of the campaign.  You will be recognized for the aggregate amount of your multi-year gift.  Click here to download a pledge form.
    Any time our school has taken a big step forward it has been possible because of charitable contributions from our parents, alumni and friends. This is one of those times and we are making BOLD moves to remain one of the finest independent schools in the country.  As we look forward toward the next century and anticipate continuing demands on operating funds, the success of the Annual Fund and the spirit of generosity among all constituent groups are essential to our School's enduring excellenve.
  • Q: How do I get involved? Fall and Spring Phonathons!

    A: Your Fall Annual Fund mailing will be followed by parent Phonathons in October and November. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us one of the following nights. Don't worry if you have never called - we will have training materials and lots of seasoned professionals on hand.  

    All Phonathons are held in the Olson Hall Presentation Room from 5:30 - 7:30 pm and dinner is provided!

    Parent Phonathons
    • Tuesday, October 17, 2017
    • Thursday, October 26, 2017
    • Wednesday, November 8, 2017
    • Wednesday, November 15, 2017

  • Q: Why should I give before December 31?

    A: Our goal is to have the parent campaign wrapped up by Thanksgiving so that parents may enjoy the rest of the year letter and phone call free! For anyone making an Annual Fund gift or pledge early, you will:
    • Provide important "early" dollars for MICDS
    • Eliminate all other Annual Fund reminders until next fall
    • Save MICDS the cost of telephoning and mailing through the remainder of the academic year
  • Q: Can my gift be matched?

    A: In a given year, matching gifts account for an average of $100,000, or about 5%, of the total MICDS Annual Fund.  Matching gifts continue to be an important source of funds for our School.  They are an increasingly important way for companies to allow their employees to direct a portion of the monies earmarked for charitable contributions.  Gifts to MICDS can be doubled or even tripled through matching gift programs and all matching gifts count towards your recognition level. Click here for more information.  To see if your employer is a matching gift company, click here.
  • Q: How do I make a gift in honor of or in memory of someone?

    A: Memorial and tribute gifts are a special way to honor friends, family and loved ones.  The MICDS Memorial & Tribute Fund helps to offset annual expenses within our general operating budget.  For more information, please contact Allison Light at 314-995-7381 or

MICDS Society

Leadership gifts of $2,000 or more are recognized as part of the MICDS Society and make up over 75% of all dollars raised. Membership in The MICDS Society is renewable annually.

Outstanding charitable support is an important tradition at MICDS. Generations of contributors have helped shape our School as a national leader in quality independent education. With a tuition gap of approximately $1,700 per student, membership at the $2,000 level is critical to the School's financial health.

MICDS Society Co-Chairs

Tom Erb, Mimi MacDonald '83, and Tracy Tretiak

The MICDS Society Levels of Giving

Head's Leadership Circle: $20,000
Pacesetter: $10,000
Benefactor: $5,000
Sponsor: $3,000
Patron: $2,000

MICDS Society Donor Recognition
  • Donors of $2,000 or more will be honored at a reception in the fall.
  • Donors of $20,000 or more will be honored at a celebration dinner in the winter.

MICDS Head's Leadership Circle

Members of the MICDS Head's Leadership Circle recognize the leadership of our great school by supporting MICDS at the highest level with a gift of $20,000 or more. These gifts comprise 15% of total Annual Fund contributions. Membership in the Head's Leadership Circle is renewable annually.

Head's Leadership Circle Chair

William L. Polk, Jr. '74
For additional information on the Annual Fund, contact:

Allison Light, Director of the Annual Fund
Phone: 314-995-7381
Fax: 314-995-7427

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Goal $1,900,000.00
Current $1,589,874.00
Remaining $310,126.00
Goal Participation 100%
Current Participation 67%
As of Date 5/1/2018
Start Date 7/1/2017
End Date 6/30/2018
Last Year Amount $1,860,890.00
Last Year Participation 79%
2017-2018 Annual Fund Progress to date. 

Thank you for your support!

Giving Levels

Head's Leadership Circle  $20,000
Pacesetter  $10,000
Benefactor  $5,000
Sponsor  $3,000
Patron  $2,000

Recognition Levels
Founder  $1,000
Ram  $500
Challenger  $250
Red & Green  $100

Latest Statistics

We thank you for your continued generosity and for making MICDS a school that is second to none. In 2016-2017, we achieved 79% participation from our parent body. Way to go!

2017-2018 Parent Class Participation Results:
JK = 71%
SK = 85%
1st = 72%
2nd = 84%
3rd = 54%
4th = 65%
5th = 73%
6th = 67%
7th = 65%
8th = 65%
9th = 64%
10th = 61%
11th = 61%
12th = 75%
Grand Total = 67%

2017-2018 Alumni Participation Results:
MI Alumnae = 18%
CDS Alumni = 17%
MICDS Alumni = 24%
All Alumni = 18%

*As of 5/1/18