The Onalaska Education Foundation was established in 1998 to strengthen community participation in Onalaska, Wisconsin public and private schools. The Foundation provides financial support for extra programs and projects that inspire teachers and students in Onalaska to achieve educational excellence. In many cases, these extra programs would not be possible without our support.
Our mission is to support educators in their quest to develop innovative opportunities for students, promote the incorporation of emerging technologies within the curriculum, facilitate business and private sector contributions to our schools, and encourage outstanding academic achievement among all Onalaska students.
The idea for establishing an educational foundation in Onalaska started with discussions between Board of Education members and school administrators during Board development sessions in 1996. At their last session in December, the Board stated the desire to support community efforts to establish an Onalaska educational foundation. The purpose would be to enhance the educational enterprise within the Onalaska community. They directed Larry Dalton, Director of Finance, to seek detailed information for start-up from the Wisconsin Educational Foundation Network, (WEFNET). December 12, 1996, Mr. Dalton reported to the Board the following suggestions:
January 1997, the Board and administration completed a list of names for the foundation steering committee. The committee was formed and proceeded to hold informational sessions during the 1997 year. Several members attended the WEFNET conference in Madison November 14, 1997. Following their return, the steering committee met on December 8, 1997 to set forth the process and procedures needed to establish the Onalaska Educational Foundation. January to June 1998, the full committee and sub-groups met several times. The Steering Committee developed the necessary policies and procedures for governance of a foundation as required by Wisconsin Statute Chapter 181 and Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
The first official meeting of the Onalaska Foundation For Educational Excellence Inc. was held in the School Board Room at Onalaska High School June 11, 1998. Twelve charter members were installed and four officers were elected. Thus, the Onalaska Foundation For Educational Excellence, Inc. was established for the specific purpose set forth in Article 3 of Incorporation.