Annual Fund FAQ

Q: What is the ISB Fund for Excellence?

The Fund for Excellence supports ISB’s core values by raising money for tuition assistance, field trips, technology for the classroom, staff professional development, and more. The Fund for Excellence is a vital component of ISB’s annual budget, and it affects all students and staff members.

The Fund for Excellence raises unrestricted funds for the current fiscal year, which means that money raised this year is used immediately to support programming and operations at the school.

Q: What is the difference between the Fund for Excellence and a Capital Campaign?

The Fund for Excellence is used each year to support ISB’s core values. It provides money for tuition assistance, field trips, professional development, and classroom resources. ISB's last capital campaign, the Campaign for Today and Tomorrow concluded in June of 2016. The money it raised was used to make physical improvements to the campus. Phase I of these improvements included furnishing the North Building; purchasing new gym equipment; purchasing a new sound system, projector, and other equipment for the performing arts and and assembly programs; and upgrading campus-wide security and fire systems. Funds raised in Phase II are being used to create a Learning Commons in the Lower Level of the West Building, providing new library, research, and collaborative work spaces. Construction on the Learning Commons is nearly complete, and we anticipate opening the space in November 2016.

Q: Where does my gift go? How is the money used?

The Fund for Excellence raises unrestricted funds to be used in the current year. Gifts to the Fund for Excellence support ISB’s core values of diversity, global curriculum, inquiry-based education, language immersion, community, and international mindedness by providing money for tuition assistance, enhanced teaching tools and classroom technology, field trips, and professional development opportunities.

Q: Why is 100% participation important?

100% participation helps ISB represent our community at its best. When members of the ISB community see that we have achieved 100% participation across constituencies (Board, Parents, Faculty/Staff), there is a sense of pride and accomplishment.

When people outside the ISB community see such high levels of participation, they can understand the extent of the ISB community’s enthusiasm and support for the school. Sustained giving and high participation numbers play a key role in our fundraising efforts both within the ISB community and outside it, where supporters want to know what percentage of our parents give to the Fund for Excellence.

Q: How much should I give?

Last year, we received Fund for Excellence gifts from $5 to more than $30,000. We ask every family to give a gift that is meaningful to them and to make ISB their top philanthropic priority.

Q: Will my $5 donation really make a difference? Why should I donate if I can only afford a small amount?

Each gift counts towards the participation numbers, and every gift helps gets us closer to our goal.

Q: I have never been asked to give before/at my last school I wasn’t asked to make a donation. Why should I make a donation now?

There are many reasons to give to ISB, and what motivates each of us may be different. The number one reason we hear from donors is that they are motivated to give because they love the school and want to give back.

Q: Is my gift tax-deductible?

100% of your gift is tax-deductible.

Q: What is an employer match?

Many companies match employee donations on a 1:1 or even 2:1 basis. Please ask your payroll administrator or Human Resources department if your company matches gifts. It usually takes only a few minutes to fill out the form, and it can often be done online. Please let the Advancement Office know to expect your matching gift.

If you have other questions, please contact Sandra Bueno at

2nd Grade Future Astronauts Blast Off to Outer Space

There was a buzz of excitement in the 2nd Grade classrooms as students began their next unit of inquiry on outer space. First, students reflected on their prior knowledge by writing and drawing what they already knew about the solar system, and then, they moved on to their space adventures! “This is the best unit for 2nd Graders!” says Paulina Bemporad, 2nd Grade English Teacher. “We tap into the wonder and imagination for space exploration, investigating our Solar System as we integrate science, math, physics, language, literacy, and social studies.”

A Powerful and Intimate Conversation Between ISB 5th Graders and Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez

Each year, as part of the Civic Symbols and Constitutions unit of inquiry, the 5th Grade class sets off to Washington, D.C. to further understand how our the Constitution and other political documents are used to govern the country and to explore the ways that monuments and civic symbols express the common values of our society. While field trips have been put on pause during the pandemic, the class has been enjoying virtual field trips and meetings with special visitors as they learn more about the United States government. Last week, the 5th Graders were very fortunate to have a virtual visit from Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, New York’s 7th Congressional district representative, which includes their own school community in Carroll Gardens as well as several other surrounding Brooklyn neighborhoods.

La Tierra en Movimiento

The 5th Grade “Moving Earth” unit encompasses Earth’s changes and how those changes can affect our lives. No one could have predicted that students would be exploring this unit while living through a historic pandemic, but the current context gave students a deeper connection to their studies and a very real lens through which to develop inquisitive questions. Students launched the unit by investigating the Earth’s changes and the human response. To explore this, Spanish 5th Graders interviewed people who have lived through various disasters from all around the world.