The Panhandle Alliance for Education was formed in 2002 by a small group of citizens concerned about the public schools in the Lake Pend Oreille School District. The group met over the summer of 2002, outlining the scope, purpose and goals of an independent school foundation. The organization was incorporated in the State of Idaho as The Panhandle Alliance for Education, Inc., and applied to the Internal Revenue Service for status as a tax-exempt, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization. The Board of Directors held its initial meeting in Sandpoint on December 4, 2002, elected officers and adopted corporation bylaws.
The Panhandle Alliance for Education is modeled after education foundations created over the years in thousands of communities across the United States. A common goal is to support public schools in our communities by raising money to enhance taxpayer-financed programs. A common focus is on quality education that raises achievement levels of all students.
Since inception, The Panhandle Alliance for Education has contributed millions of dollars to teacher and school grants. Every school in the Lake Pend Oreille School District has received these grants. In it’s first decade, the alliance also built an endowment of over $4 million which is added to each year. This endowment ensures grants can be delivered to teachers and schools in the district for years to come.