Nature of the Endowment Trust for Catholic Education:
The Endowment Trust Fund for Catholic Education (the Trust) was established in 1989 by the Diocese of Kansas City – St. Joseph (the Diocese) exclusively for the management and investment of all assets donated for the use and benefit of Catholic educational programs within Diocesan parishes, schools and agencies. The Trust is a separate legal, tax-exempt entity and fiduciary with a separate Board of Trustees (the Board), whose responsibilities include the collection, management, investment and distribution of the Trust assets. The Board consists of the Bishop of the Diocese, priests, the Diocesan Superintendent of Catholic Schools and lay members primarily from Catholic parishes sponsoring schools or other religious education programs, independent Catholic schools and high schools. All Board members are non-compensated. Participating schools or religious education programs (participants) each adopt the Trust as recipient of contributions and transfer funds to the Trust to be managed as a pool of assets for the proportional benefit of all participants. The pool of assets is managed by a professional investment manager and maintained in a custody account by a professional custodian.
Restricted and unrestricted revenue and support:
Each participant encourages third party donors (donors) to make contributions or legacy gifts to each participant’s individual trust fund. All contributions to the trust are non-forfeitable and become an irrevocable part of the principal of the Trust. Contributions received are recorded as unrestricted, temporarily restricted, or permanently restricted support, depending on the existence or nature of any donor restrictions. All contributions must be exclusively for Catholic education purposes within the Diocese. All contributions and distributions are recorded by a professional recordkeeping company.
Distribution of funds:
Distributions from the Trust to participants are only made according to an annual spending policy adopted by the Board. The Board established the allocation to participants to be the greater value between the annual net income and 4 percent of the 36-month average market value of the Trust. In a year where the net income was less than 4 percent of the 36-month average market value of the Trust, the difference would be made up from realized gains, to bring the distributable income up to 4 percent of the 36-month average market value of the Trust.
Making A Difference
The Endowment Trust supports one of the fundamental missions of the church to educate, challenge, and inspire students in the Catholic tradition of faith, service and academic excellence.
Catholic schools have made a difference in so many lives in the diocese. But the reach of the Endowment Trust is making a difference in many collateral ways. The hundreds of thousands of dollars that are now distributed from the Trust to Catholic schools are a strong boost to the communities in which these schools exist. Where public education sometimes struggles, Catholic schools offer alternatives that keep neighborhoods stable, provide values that Catholic students project to the world and help keep parishes solvent. The Trust offers long-term financial continuity that keeps giving for these purposes. Donors to the Trust ensure that their wishes will keep working to provide Catholic values that have a broad impact for years to come.