History

The Olathe Public Schools Foundation, founded in 1997, is a non-profit, volunteer-based organization providing grants, scholarships and recognitions for the teachers and students of our district. The board consists of 24 community members who volunteer their time, talents and resources to serve Olathe education. The superintendent as well as the Foundation Executive Director, serve on the board as ex-officio members.

Foundation Milestones

October 11, 1996: The Foundation officially incorporates as a non-profit corporation.

November 1996: The Foundation holds its first fundraiser at the Mill Creek Center. The event also honors R.R. Osborne’s gift to renovate the Mill Creek Center.

May 1997: The Foundation holds its first golf tournament at Deer Creek Golf Club.

October 1998: The Foundation’s first fall business breakfast features then Kansas Governor, Bill Graves.

Fall 1998: The Foundation launches the OSCAR program with a $15,000 gift from R.R. Osborne. The program is organized to recognize student citizenship and volunteerism.

Spring 1998: The Foundation launches the Mini-Grant program. Olathe District Schools had previously administered these innovative grants; however, changing priorities required the district funds be shifted to new initiatives. The Foundation awarded nine grants, totaling $15,000. The program has now provided more than $263,000 in grant support to classrooms.

Summer 2000: The Foundation provides first support for summer school scholarships totaling $9,300. Total Foundation support for summer school now exceeds $250,000.

June 29, 2001: The Foundation launches the Educator Excellence (E²) program with the support of the Credit Union of Johnson County (now Mainstreet Credit Union). E² has recognized 162 teachers for an award total of $83,000 since 2001.

Spring 2001: The Foundation holds its first Major Saver Campaign. Major Saver has raised more than $500,000 for the Foundation and Olathe District Schools since 2001.

April 1, 2002: The Foundation establishes the R.R. Osborne Scholarship Fund with a $500,000 bequest from Mr. Osborne. At Mr. Osborne’s direction, the program awards one student at each Olathe high school a four year $5,000 scholarship. The student must be studying education, business or medicine to be eligible. The Foundation has awarded 18 scholarships to students with a total of $90,000 distributed since 2003.

Summer 2005: The Foundation launches the Student Care Fund – In Honor of Dr. Ron Wimmer, a fund to support students in times of urgent need. Through the gifts and pledges of donors, funds are available to provide emergency assistance for students and their families.

March 1, 2008: The Foundation establishes the Max and Tulsa Lea Green Scholarship Fund with a $400,000 gift from the Greens.

April 20, 2010: The A.L.L. (Avid Lifetime Learners) Fund was established to recognize retiring Superintendent Dr. Pat All's lifetime of service to Olathe District Schools. The Fund will help AVID students who are part of the "academic middle" pay for AP and ACT tests as well as College-Now courses.

May, 2012: The Foundation Board of Directors announces the Classified Employee Excellence Recognition Award (CEERA) awarding classified staff for their outstanding service to the district. Two awards are given monthly August through May with a $500 cash gift to recipients.

April, 2014: The innagural group for the Women's Giving Circle votes to fund a $5,000 grant which will encourage female students in the ares of science, technology, engineering, and math (S.T.E.M.)

October 8, 2015: The Foundation launches  Fund-A-Need, a crowd-funding tool that brings donors into the classroom. Donors can search by school, grade level, and by subject to find a cause that speaks directly to your heart and donate.