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October 14, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
October 14, 2011

I was a volunteer, donor and parent to a student at this institution. Over the course of more than a year, we were repeatedly told that certain services (ex: Interactive Metronome, autism support, individualized educational plans) were part of the program, then told they were not available because of lack of funds, lack of staff, etc. Meanwhile, virtually all fund raising money went to a "future building" fund, versus the program itself, while donors and participants were led to believe it went to the children being served. The school was in operation for more than 5 years before bylaws were written. A board member wrote a proposal in July 2011 expressing concerns that the school was not providing promised services, but his proposal was not approved. Turnover of students enrolled May 2011 to September 2011 is follows: of 25 students, five "graduated", and seven elected to leave. That's more than 25%. Since leaving, we have learned from the secretary of State's office that the school failed to file either an application or exemption to solicit funds in South Carolina for 2010 or 2011, although the Gala event netted more than $14,000 October 2010. Money which went to the "future building fund" vs the children being "served". Or not.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my role as a parent of a student with disabilities, a volunteer and a donor.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Elect a new board that is committed to the stated mission statement. Allocate the funds currently being held for a "future building" to providing the program which is advertised and promoted. Let donors to the Gala event know where the funds actually go.

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