Vine Hill and Brook Knoll Elementary Schools recently had their auction fundraisers and although the final figures are not out yet, current figures show approximately $180,000 in fundraising and it is estimated that the total raised could be close to $250,000 between both schools when final figures are counted.

“We are still working out our totals and firming up expenses, but on Saturday we took in just shy of $99,000”, said Marci-Beth Maple who is the VP of Fundraising for the Vine Hill PTA. “With the addition of our event ticket sales, Online Auction, Read-A-Thon, matching corporate gifts and business sponsors, we expect to wrap up our Auction Series events with well over $165,000, but that number is still evolving as we finish things up and cross check everything.”

Brook Knoll’s current fundraiser has them netting over $80,000 after expenses with those figures also still continuing to go up as more contributions are still being made.

“This is an increase from last year”, said Heather Warner who is President of the Brook Knoll PTO. “Our first annual online auction was also a huge success. Cash Donations to our auction are still coming in and anyone who would like to contribute can visit”

Vine Hill’s Fund-A-Need Project for 2014 focused on a math program called IMEC.

“As part of our annual Auction Event, the Vine Hill PTA has selected a Fund-A-Need Project, something that goes above and beyond the many programs we work so hard to maintain,” said Maple. “This year’s Fund-A-Need Project is Innovative Math in Every Classroom, IMEC for short.”

A major focus for Brook Knoll is the technology sector.

“As part of our 2014 Fund-a-Need, Technology Integration, the Brook Knoll Eagle Connection will soon be purchasing about 30 iPads plus a charging cart for our teachers and students to use in the classroom for targeted instruction and to provide additional technology support to our already incredible Computer Lab”, said Warner.

The fundraising is needed to support many of the projects and needed programs that are not funded by the State as Scotts Valley is in the lower 10% of funding in the state, yet still manages to be among the top rated school districts in the state. Without efforts like the Vine Hill PTA and the Brook Knoll Eagle PTO, many of the programs that the children at these schools are taking advantage of would not be possible or available without the fundraisers.

The initial beneficiaries of these efforts are the students, no doubt. But studies have shown that high rated schools and programs affect entire neighborhoods and communities as well as the students themselves. Higher learning leads to more future opportunities and it also leads to lower crime rates and higher property values in the areas that have good schools. The FBI released a report recently that showed Scotts Valley had the lowest crime rate in Santa Cruz County which coincides with the highly rated schools that Scotts Valley offers. Read the report “The Secrets of Scotts Valley’s Success”

Both schools were heavily promoting and working to raise funds with their auctions and other efforts, and although one of their main fundraising projects is almost completed, they continue to need and work towards raising funds throughout the year to fill in the gaps that exist with the lack of state funding for the schools.

For more information on how to contribute to the Vine Hill PTA and the Brook Knoll Eagle Connection, go to: and