Capital Campaign

CSD: The Story Continues  

Help us achieve our $400,000 fundraising goal for 2015/2016!If You Dream It…

June 2, 2015

A letter from Joy Warner –

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens

can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.”

Margaret Mead


 “CSD:  The Story Continues”

It seems impossible that we are about to graduate our second class at CSD.  Congratulations to the Class of 2015; another group of extraordinary young adults who we are proud to know!  One of the best gifts found at CSD is that we know our students and families deeply and there is a strong sense of community within our school family.   Simply said, we know each other’s stories.  I often hear people share their, “How we came to be at CSD” story.  Sometimes I hear folks telling,  “I remember our first…..” stories.  When I asked students in the Class of 2014 what they wanted for their graduation keynote, I heard one repeating message:  they wanted to remember and celebrate their stories.  As with every important milestone at CSD, we set traditions that will carry on forever.  I suspect the tradition of celebrating our stories will be a part of CSD Graduation long after I am gone.  While CSD is full of amazing students, staff members, and parents who each bring an individual story to the community, it is our collective story that we celebrate with this year’s fundraising effort.  We each bring our unique gifts, talents, and passions together for the good of children and I am honored to walk beside each of you in this effort. The pure intention of attempting to always do what is right for every child has been a powerful guiding force in our CSD story and I hope that intention will forever remain an important part of our journey.  That intention joined with the power of thoughtful, committed parents and community has created an unstoppable train of goodwill.   We humbly thank you for investing your time and resources in each of our students at CSD.

Our journey is not yet over.  We need to continue tweaking things at CSD to continuously improve upon our programs and we must continue to seek opportunities to positively impact education beyond the walls of CSD. 

Let’s proceed on our journey together as we continue our story to improve education for our children at CSD and beyond.  Let’s show the world that the staff, parents, and students at CSD are concerned with more than just the education of the children we serve.    Let us never forget that apathy is our enemy and that the powerful force that people feel at CSD is simply the result of every single adult working together for the good of the children.  We cannot be complacent.  We must commit to each other and we must take time to talk and know the stories of our students and families.  Let us never be too busy to stop and listen to each other.  It is the sharing of our personal stories that bonds us together as we continue the story of CSD.  We have much work ahead of us for our children and community.

We ask that you all join us in our 2015-2016 Fundraising Campaign as we continue our story.   We have accomplished a lot already but there is much left to do.  Consider these important words as we continue to dream for our students and our world and please reflect upon our individual responsibility in this collective effort:


“Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe,

and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”
A.A. Milne

                Each year we conduct fundraising to support our educational program and we thank you for your ongoing support and dedication to achieve extraordinary things for our students.  The funds we raise support our general annual instructional and operational needs (for items such as furniture, computers, books and other instructional supplies, educational software, and staff development), as well as helping us pay down debt incurred in up-fitting the elementary and middle school space ($2.9 million loan) and high school space ($4.2 million loan, after completing the $1.4 million HS arts wing).

                As we discuss every year, parent participation in fundraising is critical. As a charter school committed to continuous improvement, it is important to understand that fundraising will always be part of our budgetary process.  CSD receives public funds for the administrative costs of school operations such as teacher salaries, learning materials for students, utilities and similar facility operating costs (we receive the same amount as local public schools for these operating expenses).  However, we do not receive public funds for capital expenses, which is a significant part of our annual budget.   

                In the upcoming budget year, we (like Charlotte Mecklenburg schools and all other public schools in North Carolina) continue to face a challenging budget.  After several years of funding cuts and a long-term salary freeze, we are hopeful that our funding challenges will continue to improve.  However, we know that even if it does, it will not improve enough.  Recent reports indicate that North Carolina ranked 42nd in public school teacher pay this year; and CSD is subject to the same funding mechanism as North Carolina’s traditional public schools.  Teachers are leaving North Carolina to teach in states and many are leaving the field completely.  We have been able to navigate this difficult budget environment largely due to conservative spending, careful fiscal management, selfless teachers, and fundraising by our amazing parent community.  I believe it will take our state years to regain the progress lost and I worry daily that North Carolina will lose master teachers who are simply done with the lack of respect and appropriate compensation.  Thankfully, we have thus far been able to shield our students from adverse consequences from these budget challenges.  Thanks to committed CSD parents, selfless staff and a caring community, we surpassed our budget goals for this current year and it was that success that is largely responsible for our ability to move forward with some large summer projects including moving our 8th grade to a new wing at the High School building, the installation of a new Middle School gym floor, and replacing our final HVAC systems at the K-8 building.  I thank you from the bottom of my heart!  But we do need your continued help!  In these tough times, we ask that you ponder this challenge as a family and set goals for supporting this important journey for our students.  If everyone who can help does help, we will definitely make our goal.  For those of you facing difficult financial times in your own families, know that we understand and your contributions of time and support are deeply cherished. 


                 “CSD:  The Story Continues”

              Please review the attached document return form regarding the CSD:  The Story Continues,” Campaign and help participate in achieving our $400,000 fundraising goal for 2015/2016.

              Our school fundraisers for the 2015/2016 school year will be:


  •  Annual “CSD:  The Story Continues” Capital Fundraising Campaign

  •  Discount Card Sale, begins August 12, 2015

  •  Golf Tournament, April 22, 2016


As you consider your yearly contribution, keep in mind that CSD is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Please consult your tax advisor about the tax benefits associated with your contribution. We will continue to post updates to our Annual Fund Campaign on our website at so that you can see the progress toward our $400,000 goal.

                Thank you for your continued support and for your commitment as we continue our story; together we cannot fail.  Our children depend upon it!

    With much love and gratitude,

    Joy K. Warner




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