Private secondary schools are using increasingly sophisticated tools to identify and woo potential donors as the scramble for financial support becomes more intense, writes The New York Times.
With schools reaching the upper limits of what they can charge in tuition, they are expanding their development offices, involving top administrators in fundraising efforts, and mining data online about parents’ purchases, finances, and personal and charitable interests to tailor pitches for donations.
The effort appears to be paying off, with annual per-school giving to private academies rising 63 percent nationally and 248 percent in New York City over the past decade, according to figures from the National Association of Independent Schools.
Fueling the drive is increasing stratification in private-school giving, with more of the money coming from a smaller groups of contributors. Fundraisers and school heads say an old rule of thumb that 20 percent of parents gave 80 percent of donations is now more like 10/90 or even 5/95.