February 22, 2012
Dear ACS Athens Parents,
A year ago the Board started discussing the feasibility of establishing a special fee that would serve as a starting point for the creation of an Endowment Fund. Endowment Funds are common practice in the United States and are invariably used by international schools as a counterpoint to the dangers arising from being essentially tuition-driven institutions.
Contrary to common belief, ACS Athens is primarily funded by tuition and not by the U.S. Embassy or other institutions and is not immune to market trends or pressure. ACS Athens, as an independent international school, serves students of 62 nationalities, with no substantial outside income beyond tuition ― at least for now.
At the same time, over the past few years the school has embarked on an ambitious restructuring program of its curriculum and physical plant with the objective of becoming one of the best schools in the world. The fact that enrollment has increased dramatically while student and parent satisfaction is at its highest, attests to the program’s success and to the hard work of all involved: families, faculty, staff, and administration.
Within this context, it is the Board’s responsibility to ensure that the school will continue to grow at a gradual pace, so as not to betray the spirit of our community or the levels of academic excellence already attained. It is also the Board’s responsibility to make sure that the proper financial, administrative and academic context is still in place for future generations of students to enjoy and profit from. As we have oftentimes said, the Board holds the school in trust for future generations. It is our hope and ambition that one day the children of our children will be ACS Athens students as well.
To do this and to ensure that any future unexpected contingencies are met successfully and not to the detriment of existing school services and programs, the Board decided last June to establish a new fee for the 2011-2012 academic year, payable by January 2012, by students attending ACS Athens. According to the Board’s decision, the Endowment Fund Fee is “to be used for the sustainability, further growth and future liabilities of the school. Any money spent out of this fund would require full Board approval.” It was also decided at the same meeting that the fee would be 300 € for families with one child and 500 € for families with two children or more. A separate bank account would be created for this fund. This decision was uploaded on our web site and a letter was sent to all parents in July.
Given the current economic situation in Greece, the Board subsequently decided to: a) postpone the fee for the next academic year (2012-2013 to be paid in full with tuition) and b) transform the fee into a flat fee of 300 € per family regardless of how many children from the same family attend the school.
Those parents who have already paid the fee may leave it as a donation, credit it against their 2012-2013 tuition and fees or ask for a refund at the Cashier’s Office. Please inform the Business Office of your decision by March 31, 2012.
The Board remains committed to providing ACS Athens students with the best education possible and we thank you for your support and commitment to our school values.
Answers to frequently asked questions » (FAQ) with further explanations can be found on the ACS Athens website.
Chairman - Board of Trustees