Fulcrum Announces $6.5 Million Early Childhood Education Endowment

February 18, 2022

Article from our 2022 February Fulcrum News

Fulcrum is thrilled to announce a new $6.5 million Early Childhood Education Endowment. This endowment began through the vision of Dick and Sharon Abrams, long-time supporters of the Fulcrum Foundation, and grew through the generosity of other believers in the power of early childhood education and the performance of our archdiocesan schools.

Fulcrum’s work in early childhood education is spearheaded by Dave Mayer, the Fulcrum-funded director of early childhood education at the Office for Catholic Schools (OCS). Under Dave’s leadership—and with the staunch support and dedication of Kristin Dixon, the superintendent for Catholic schools—35 archdiocesan schools received funding in 2020-2021 to enhance both their indoor and outdoor programming, while giving staff the opportunity for professional development.

“This is a watershed moment for our preschools. The endowment will provide significant increased financial support to the 56 archdiocesan preschools educating over 1,700 students,” said Dave. OCS plans to use the endowment to provide comprehensive curriculum to early learning programs; offer preschool tuition assistance; fund teacher professional development, certificates, and degrees in early education; and support facility expansion and licensing.

Fulcrum’s early childhood education support originated through grants from an endowment at the Seattle Foundation funded by a group of donors that included the Abrams. In January 2022, the endowment at the Seattle Foundation was consolidated into the Fulcrum Early Childhood Education Endowment. The endowment will also expand current early learning programs, allowing more families to enroll in early childhood education in our Catholic schools.

The Abrams decided to invest in early childhood education after research and discussions with educators and parents made it clear that the biggest educational impact could be made with early learners from birth to age five. The Abrams believe that all children should have access to early learning programs which provide a critical head-start to young children in their most formative years.

Mr. Abrams—along with many other donors, the leadership of Fulcrum, and OCS—envisions that the program will benefit the children of Western Washington and, with continued growth, become an exemplary program, admired and respected across the country.

To learn more about the endowment and how you can contribute, contact Julie Coleman, managing director of the Uplift campaign, at julie.coleman@fulcrumfoundation.org.