Endowments ensure the future of Catholic education

Outcomes, faith-filled environment make schools top funding priority for Catholic Foundation donors

Dioceses across the United States, including Allentown, are just wrapping up the annual week-long celebration of Catholic education. Catholic Schools Week showcases the benefits of a rigorous academic program with consistent outcomes coupled with a faith-filled, family-friendly school environment.  

These benefits make Catholic school education a top funding priority for donors of the Catholic Foundation of Eastern Pennsylvania. Fifty percent of the endowment funds managed by the Catholic Foundation are education and scholarship related. The current 49 funds were started with a focus on preserving access to a Catholic school education.

“Every week is Catholic Schools Week to our donors,” said Pete Waldron, President of the Catholic Foundation. “People see the strong results and outcomes at our Catholic schools and are asking how they can do more to sustain this education success for students.”

In the Diocese of Allentown, many students would like to attend or remain in a Catholic school. However, diminishing family finances can make this choice impossible. Cost is the top reason cited by families who do not enroll their children in Catholic schools.

During the past five years, schools that benefit from education endowment funds managed by the Catholic Foundation received more than $1 million in support.  However, the shortfall for annual scholarship needs for all Diocesan schools exceeds $10 million.

“We need to create and grow more education endowment funds to make Catholic schools affordable and accessible for all families,” Waldron said.  “Education endowment funds generate future income for our schools and provide students access to a premier Catholic education and a chance to succeed.”

Scholarships, teacher excellence efforts, STEAM educational programs, as well as maintenance and capital improvement efforts, are top funding needs.

“The Catholic Foundation will work with parishes, schools and individual donors to create and grow endowments that will fund these educational priorities,” Waldron said.

The Catholic Foundation currently works with 74 partners and 104 endowment funds. Its assets under management has grown to more than $25 million.

Education / Scholarship endowment funds at the Catholic Foundation include:

  • ACCHS Green & Gold Education Endowment Fund
  • Assumption BVM Education Endowment Fund (Bethlehem)
  • Assumption BVM School Endowment Fund (Pottsville)
  • Reverend Joseph A. Barnes Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Berks County Catholic School Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Bishop Thompson Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Catholic School Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Nicholas P. Connell Scholarship Endowment Fund (OLPH School)
  • Hispanic Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Holy Family School Endowment Fund
  • Holy Family School Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Frances and Michael  Huszar College Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • John Paul II Center for Special Learning Endowment Fund
  • John Paul II Center Teacher Excellence Endowment Fund
  • Thomas O. Kern Memorial Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Kolbe Academy Fund
  • Rev. Monsignor Robert F. Kozel Seminary Endowment Fund
  • Mercy School for Special Learning General Endowment Fund
  • Mercy School for Special Learning Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Mercy School for Special Learning Scholarship & Education Endowment Fund
  • From The Heart Endowment Fund (Mercy School)
  • Mercy School Teacher Excellence Endowment Fund
  • Nativity High School Capital Improvement Fund
  • Albert J. Neupauer Education Endowment Fund
  • Reverend Joseph J. Ostheimer Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Our Lady of Perpetual Help School Fund
  • Sacred Heart Catholic Education Endowment Fund (Allentown)
  • St. Ann Catholic Education Endowment Fund (Emmaus)
  • St. Anne Education Endowment Fund (Bethlehem)
  • St. Catharine of Siena School Endowment Fund (Reading)
  • St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Education Fund
  • St. Jane De Chantal Education Endowment Fund
  • St. Jane De Chantal School Academic Excellence Endowment Fund
  • St. Joseph of the Panther Valley Education Endowment Fund
  • St. Joseph the Worker Angel Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • St. Joseph the Worker Be A Viking Scholarship Fund
  • St. Joseph the Worker Pre-School Endowment Fund
  • St. Joseph the Worker School Endowment Fund
  • St. Peter School Endowment Fund (Reading)
  • St. Thomas More School Endowment Fund
  • Scalici Family Endowment Fund
  • Loretta Lecher Schneider Scholarship Endowment Fund (Nativity HS)
  • Bernard M. Schramko Memorial Scholarship Fund
  • Schuylkill Carbon Catholic Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Seminary Endowment Fund
  • Joseph & Mary Simko Education Fund (Holy Trinity Parish, Whitehall)
  • Charles A. Wagner Scholarship Endowment Fund
  • Francis & Mary Waldron Family Endowment Fund
  • Mary Kate Waldron Mercy School for Special Learning Endowment Fund

Click here for more information about these educational and scholarship endowment funds.

— Published February 3, 2022