Having raised over $1 million in support of Santa Monica-Malibu schools, the Save Our Schools campaign hopes to add to its pot with events planned in its final week.

As the Sunday, Aug. 15th funding deadline approaches, campaign organizers say they are relying heavily on last-minute donors and those who are in a position to increase their current commitment. The campaign will conclude with a “Save Our Schools Grand Finale Celebration” from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 15 at the Santa Monica High School Science Quad. The event will include an announcement of the total amount raised for district schools.

The more than $1 million raised through the campaign equals about 20 percent of the funding that would have been possible with the approval of Measure A, a school funding measure that did not receive the required two-thirds vote on the May mail-in ballot, campaign organizers note.

They explain that due to the funding raised, students will be able to have more access to libraries and a more complete elementary music program in the coming year, as well as lower class sizes. Campaign organizers are confident enough money has been donated to restore at least 12 of the 60 school employee positions lost to state funding cuts.

“Last week we reached $1 million, and that’s a huge accomplishment,” said Linda Gross, executive director of the Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation. “But this week is all about doing more. If we can get more direct donations, we have a real chance of making a significant difference for next year.”

The public is encouraged to make donations online at www.smmef.org/.

Donations can also be mailed in to 1649 16th St., Santa Monica, CA 90404, but all donations must be received by Aug. 15 to be used for the coming school year.

“We are collecting funds right up until the last minute, because every dime helps our kids for next year,” Gross said.

The Grand Finale Celebration is a picnic where all members of the community are invited. The event will highlight the campaign accomplishments and recognize the people and organizations who helped make this campaign a success.

Food trucks will be on hand, complimented by free lemonade and free music.

Speakers at the event include state Assemblywoman Julia Brownley (D-Santa Monica), Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Superintendent Tim Cuneo, and members of the Board of Education.

Information, http://savesantamonicamalibuschools.org/.

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