Sparking and Strengthening Day School Funding

Jewish day schools build strong Jewish identities and an extensive peer community that supports a positive and knowledgeable Jewish identity.

Who is eligible?

In an effort to bring new donors into the community of day school supporters,  MATCH Chicago will provide matching funds to day schools in specific communities in North America at 50 cents to the dollar for first-time gifts of at least $5,000.  

Donors who have previously given to day school education may participate if their new gift is at least five times greater than their largest previous donation in or the sum of their donations to Jewish day school education in a fiscal year; whichever number is greater. The new gift must be at least $5,000.

How does it work?

Applications for MATCH Chicago will be accepted beginning on February 2, 2015 until November 2, 2015. Gifts paid between February 2, 2015 and December 31, 2015 may be eligible for matching funds. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until all applications for the entire pool are submitted and approved.

Ready to get started?

Review How MATCH Chicago Works, and begin the application process.

For Schools | Eligibility
MATCH Process | MATCH Application

  • For Schools
    • Which schools are eligible for MATCH Chicago?
      • Eligible Chicago-area Jewish day schools must be elementary, middle schools or high schools or a combination of those grades. Independent pre-schools are not eligible for matching funds.

        Eligible Jewish day schools must have an enrollment of at least 50 students (K-12) at the time the application is submitted.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • Can an eligible school submit more than one application for matching funds?
      • Yes. Schools may submit multiple applications for unique, eligible donations for up to $50,000 in matching funds. The maximum match that a single gift can receive is $50,000.

        Please see About MATCH and Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • What does “minimum enrollment of 50 students” mean?
      • An eligible school will have a minimum of 50 students enrolled grades K-12. The school must be at least two grades in K-12; specifically Pre K-K would be considered a nursery school, and not eligible for MATCH purposes. The school does not need to span the entire age spectrum, any combination of grades K-12 are acceptable.  Kindergarten programs must include at least a First Grade to be considered eligible.

        50 students must be enrolled in this academic year, 2014-2015

        Schools that have fewer than 50 students enrolled this year may be considered for MATCH on a case-by-case basis. MATCH will take into consideration factors such as: other indicators of long-term sustainability of the school, size and demographics of the local Jewish community, number of day schools in proximity, etc.

        If you have less than 50 students enrolled for the 2014-2015 academic year, submit your application and MATCH will contact you for more information.

    • How can I get started?
      • The MATCH Chicago Reference Guide and Toolkit contains tips on getting started, including a sample message to send to your board members, suggestions for identifying MATCH prospects, and expertise on conducting prospect research.

  • For Donors
    • Which donors are eligible for MATCH?
      • MATCH is eligible to first-time donors making gifts of $5,000 or more to Jewish day schools or those whose gift is at least five times their largest previous gift in past three years.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • Does a donor have to pay their gift all at once?
      • No, the applicant must include the total amount of the gift s/he plans to give when filling out the application. If necessary, the gift can be paid in installments of any amount over the course of the matching grant cycle, from February 2, 2015 to December 31, 2015.

        See Verification Procedures and Notices for more information.

    • Can a donor apply for matching funds for more than one gift?
      • Eligible donors can only receive matching funds toward one gift.  The maximum amount of matching funds that a gift can receive is $50,000.

        Please see About Match for more information.

    • Can a donor who previously participated in MATCH apply again?
      • Yes, donors who were awarded matching grants from previous MATCH programs are eligible to apply again as long as their new gift is at least five times greater than their largest previous gift to Jewish day school education and they meet all other MATCH eligibility requirements.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • What is the "lookback" period for a donor's previous gifts to Jewish day schools?
      • A donor is considered an existing donor and must increase their new gift by five times if they have given a gift to a Jewish day school in the past 3 years (2012-2015).

    • Can a corporation be considered a donor for MATCH?
      • Generally NO.

        Gifts made through a family business may be eligible only if the business represents the interests of an individual or married couple. Multiple partners or family members making a gift from a business would not be eligible for MATCH.

    • Do gifts to federation count as past day school giving?
      • If a donor made a gift to a federation fund that benefits a single school, that gift counts as a previous gift to a day school. In this case, the donor would need to make a five-fold increase to be eligible for MATCH.

        If a donor made a gift to a federation campaign that benefits multiple day schools or Jewish education generally, that gift does not count as a previous gift to a day school.

        A gift made through a donor-advised fund does count as prior giving, regardless of whether that fund is managed through federation or another institution.

  • Eligibility
    • Can a donor earmark a gift for a particular program or purpose?
      • Yes. Gifts to general operating expenses, endowment, as well as those earmarked for a particular program or project at a day school are eligible for matching funds. However, gifts for capital projects are NOT eligible for matching funds.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information. 

    • Is a donor eligible for MATCH if they previously gave a gift to a Jewish day school?
      • If a donor previously donated in support of Jewish day school education (whether to a school directly, in support of a capital campaign or endowment fund or to an organization that supports day school education projects) the donor's new gift must be at least five times greater than the donor's previous largest gift to a day school or day school education project. MATCH targets first-time gifts to Jewish day school education, not first-time gifts to a particular day school.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • Can a gift given to a school prior to February 2, 2015 be eligible for MATCH?
      • Only gifts that are paid between February 2, 2015 and December 31, 2015 are eligible for MATCH. If a donor increases their previous gift by five times, they may be eligible for matching funds.

        Please see Eligibility Guidelines for more information.

    • Can a loan from a non-parent to a school be forgiven and then considered as an eligible gift for MATCH?
      • No.  Forgiven loans of any kind are not eligible for MATCH.

    • Is a multi-year gift eligible for a MATCH?
      • A newly-secured, multi-year gift for operating funds may be considered for MATCH. However, only the part paid in the MATCH calendar period (February 2, 2015-December 31, 2015) can be MATCHED. The new gift paid this year must be a minimum of $5,000 and must meet all other MATCH criteria.

    • What types of gift are eligible?
      • A gift that is cash or otherwise highly liquid is acceptable: cash, check, wire transfer, transfer of publicly traded stock are all allowed. Specifically:

        • A gift from your donor’s individual donor advised fund is acceptable.
        • A gift paid from your donor’s IRA is acceptable.
        • A gift made in honor of or in memory of someone is acceptable.
        • A gift made through a fundraising event is acceptable, net of the benefits received (meal, golf course fee, etc.).
        • A gift from overseas—say from a grandparent in Israel, South Africa, Europe, or South America, which meets all other MATCH criteria—can be eligible for MATCH.
        • A gift made anonymously is acceptable—a school does not have to publish the donor’s name in order for that donor’s gift to be eligible for MATCH. However, the donor name must be shared with MATCH for vetting purposes.

        Illiquid investments are not acceptable for MATCH: annuities, insurance policies, Israel Bonds, other slowly maturing instruments are not allowed, nor are non-cash gifts or services. Specifically:

        • A forgiven loan is not acceptable.
        • Gifts paid by credit card are not acceptable.
    • Are gifts from a family foundation eligible for MATCH?
        • Gifts from family foundations are generally eligible for MATCH.
        • A gift from a foundation must be either the foundation’s first gift to Jewish day school OR five times the foundation’s largest previous gift to any day school.
        • In the event that one or more of the foundation’s principals, board members, directors, or his/her spouse has made a gift to a day school in the past three years, the foundation gift must also be five times the size of the largest of those gifts.
        • As part of the MATCH application process, family foundations are required to submit a Foundation Eligibility Statement in lieu of the Donor Eligibility Statement (intended for individual donors or spousal donors).
    • Are gifts made from a trust eligible for MATCH?
      • Gifts from trusts are generally eligible for MATCH but will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. See above regarding estate gifts.

    • Are gifts from an estate eligible for MATCH?
      • Estate gifts are generally not eligible for MATCH. The litmus test is whether there is potential for a repeat gift in the future. A one-time distribution of assets does not meet the MATCH objective of generating new and on-going communal support for day schools. However, a gift from a trust that is set up to make on-going gifts may be eligible for MATCH. Whether your school can cultivate and steward an ongoing relationship with an estate executor or a trust administrator will be a key factor in determining gift eligibility for MATCH.

  • MATCH Process
    • What is the ratio of matching funds to donations?
      • Eligible gifts will be matched at a rate of 1:2. For every U.S. dollar granted by a donor, MATCH will provide an additional $.50. The maximum amount of matching funds available for an individual donation will be $50,000. The maximum amount of matching funds available for an individual school will be $50,000.

        Please see About MATCH for more information.

    • Is there a maximum amount of matching funds that an individual day school may receive from MATCH?
      • An individual Jewish day school may receive a maximum of $50,000 in matching funds. An institution that receives more than $100,000 in grants may still only receive $50,000 in matching funds from MATCH.

        Please see About MATCH for more information.

    • Will all eligible gifts be matched by MATCH?
      • No. Applications will be evaluated and matching funds awarded according to the order in which they are completed and submitted until the entire $400,000 has been allocated. Submitting an application prior to the deadline date of November 2, 2015 does NOT guarantee consideration for a grant.

        Please refer to the MATCH Process for more information.

    • What is the timeline for the 2015 MATCH Chicago program?
    • What is the deadline for submitting an application to MATCH?
      • The deadline date for submitting an application is 5:00 PM Eastern November 2, 2015.

        Please see the MATCH Calendar for a comprehensive list of important dates and deadlines.

    • How will I know if the MATCH grant is still available and if applications are still being accepted and reviewed?
      • Once MATCH receives completed applications requesting all available matching funds, an announcement will be posted on www.dayschoolmatch.org.

        Any additional applications received after the available funds are exhausted will be placed on a waiting list in the event that any previous applications are deemed ineligible during the review process.

        Please see MATCH Process for more information.

    • How will the privacy of both school and donor information be handled?
      • All information submitted to MATCH will be kept in confidence and will be shared only with MATCH partners. MATCH will not publicly disclose the names of any donors. 

  • MATCH Application
    • Our school submitted an application but did not receive an email confirmation. Is our application on file?
        • Start by checking your email's spam filter and junk folder for an email from info@dayschoolmatch.org.  If you find the email there, be sure to add info@dayschoolmatch.org to your "safe" email list in order to receive future emails from MATCH.
        • If you still do not receive an email, please contact Suzanne Kling Langman via voicemail at 212-396-8858.