Frequently Asked Questions

Have a burning question we haven't answered here? We'd love for you to contact us and find out more about the Student Advancement Foundation. 

Does the SAF award grants to individual teachers?

No, the SAF is unique among public school foundations in that regard. We fund district-wide initiatives that have a potential impact on all GRPS youth.

Why do I make my check out to the SAF if I’m giving money to a specific campaign?

The SAF helps individual schools with campaigns by serving in a "managed pass-through"/fiduciary role, approved on a case-by-case basis.

Isn’t the SAF just using private money for things our school district should pay for?

In wealthier school districts, support for enrichment activities or the tools and supplies kids need are often provided by district families, not the public school system. Through parent/teacher councils, booster clubs or mini-grant foundations, those districts’ families make sure students experience the symphony, explore natural habitats and have a high-powered graphing calculator when they take the ACT exam. With more than 85% of students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunch, those crucial "extras" are unattainable for too many GRPS families, yet the SAF believes our students deserve to benefit from the same opportunities and solicits support from our community to help level the playing field.

Is the SAF part of Grand Rapids Public Schools?

No, the SAF is an independent, not-for-profit foundation.  We partner and work closely with the district to reach our mutual goal—student success!