This In Step with the Board highlights our upcoming Budget and Philanthropy town halls for parents and guardians and provides an overview of key financial processes that the Board's Finance Committee oversees.
Budget & Philanthropy Town Halls – Thursday, February 2nd at 7pm (via Zoom) and Friday, February 3rd at 9 am (hybrid In-Person and Zoom)
Every year, the Board utilizes formal and informal opportunities to educate all members of our community on the thought and rigor that goes into our long-range financial planning and annual budgeting processes. Board Treasurer Julian Allen and Head of School Joe Harvey will host this year's Budget and Philanthropy Town Hall sessions on Thursday, February 2nd at 7:00pm via Zoom only and on Friday, February 3rd at 9:00am in-person and via Zoom. Every parent and guardian in the community has made a significant commitment by deciding to enroll their child/children at Mark Day, and we are committed to providing transparency to the community regarding how the school's budgets are composed. We hope you will make every effort to attend one of these informative sessions, and we welcome all questions that you may have regarding budget-related topics.
A primary role of the Finance Committee is to lead the Board's work to ensure the long-term financial strength and sustainability of our school. The committee, led by Treasurer Julian Allen and Assistant Treasurer Megan Mariani, works in partnership with the administration to monitor and discuss all financial matters in advance of Board discussions and decisions. With our school's mission in mind, our committee engages in disciplined oversight of both the school's budget and financial accounts (e.g., endowment) to ensure that Mark Day students continue to experience a vibrant program delivered by exceptional faculty and staff in a socioeconomically diverse community.
Each year, we go through a deliberate, detailed, and iterative budgeting process. Each budget line item is carefully reviewed and discussed, and multiple revenue and expense scenarios are considered. The committee analyzes benchmark data from peer schools in depth. This year, in addition to topics such as school operating expenses and funding new programmatic initiatives, there has been considerable focus on the tension between rising inflation and our determination to carefully manage tuition increases.
The investment subcommittee is led by Trustee Scott Lamson '06. We monitor and evaluate investment performance and consider investment management options for endowment and other financial accounts, guided by the Board's investment policy. We work with experienced advisors and institutional money managers to make our allocation decisions and to help us achieve our objectives over various time horizons. Our institutional money manager works quarterly with the investment subcommittee and presents an update annually to the Finance Committee; this update is made available to the entire board. The subcommittee tracks performance and cost metrics to ensure that we are appropriately positioned to achieve our goals.
Thanks to the support of the Mark Day community and our continued commitment to thoughtful financial management, our school remains on very solid financial footing. If you have any questions or comments about financial planning at Mark Day School, please contact Julian Allen or Megan Mariani. We would love to hear your feedback, expand our dialogue, and broaden our relationships in the community.
We look forward to seeing you for the Budget and Philanthropy Town Hall meetings on Thursday, February 2 at 7pm (via Zoom) or Friday, February 3 at 9am (in person and via Zoom). Zoom links will be sent out before the meetings.
All the best,
Mark Day School Board of Trustees