While the winter weather has us glancing at the forecast more often these days, a series of distinctive red and yellow thermometers around town are answering a different question: How close is Kiddo!, the Mill Valley Schools Community Foundation, to reaching its ever-climbing obligation to fund art, music, dance, drama and poetry programs at Mill Valley’s public elementary schools and middle school for the 2019-20 school year? 

Kiddo!’s 2019-20 goal for the approximately 2,850 students across the Mill Valley School District’s five elementary schools and Mill Valley Middle School is $3.1 million, and the organization has received $2.5 million to date from parents and local businesses. In addition to the aforementioned programs, Kiddo! also funds classroom and library aides, elementary physical education programs, technology needs, teacher grant funding and more. Funds are raised through Kiddo!’s Annual Campaign, Business Partnerships, Endowment, and special events, and Kiddo! officials hope to receive more tax-deductible donations before December 31.

“Mill Valley schools are among the best anywhere… Our excellence is the fruit of purposeful and organized support from our community, including financial donations,” says Edna Maguire School Principal Leo Kostelnik. “Parcel taxes and donations to our PTAs and Kiddo! combine to bring our per-pupil funding up to the national average for public schools; this local funding pays for the people and programs that put us over the top in quality.” 

“Mill Valley is a special place to live, and we need to nurture the talent, intelligence, and potential in all our young students,” says Kiddo! Executive Director Bill Lampl. “Keeping the arts as part of the core curriculum in Mill Valley is only possible thanks to private contributions from parents, businesses, and the community.” 

The 411: Tax-deductible donations can be made online or mailed to 409 Sycamore Ave, Mill Valley, 94941. Kiddo! also accepts donations of appreciated stock, real estate, cars, and life insurance premiums, all of which have the potential to provide significant tax deductions for the donor. MORE INFO.

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