Frequently Asked Questions

Why should my family support ISZL through giving to the annual fund / capital campaign?

ISZL is a non-profit school and receives no direct funding from any government or external agency. Revenue raised through tuition and other fees enable the School to offer the highest standard of core academic and pastoral programmes. However, to enhance these programmes, ISZL seeks the support of its community through the annual fund.

When you give to the Fund for Excellence, our annual fund, you invest in each and everyone of our students. Here’s how:

  • Funds can only be used for a thoughtful idea proposed by a teacher or staff member which fosters innovation and skill-building for our students;
  • The School Leadership Team reviews and approves all Fund for Excellence proposals. They ensure applications meet rigorous, mission-driven criteria and that grants are allocated across all school divisions;
  • Funding remains outside the operational budget, providing resources throughout the school year; and
  • The Fund for Excellence places confidence in our students’ and teachers’ ability to create the future of teaching and learning.

To see what has been made possible with support from the Fund for Excellence in the past, visit our Impact of Giving page.

Capital campaign donations are necessary for the School to grow and respond to demands, both physical and pedagogical. The Board of Trustees, through a thorough strategic planning process, determines capital campaign projects and provides the vision and leadership in all capital initiatives.

Why not raise the tuition instead of fundraising?

Raising tuition to the level necessary to cover all of the costs of an ISZL education would limit the number of qualified students (both corporate and private pay) who could afford to attend. As part of our commitment to diversity, we aim to make ISZL affordable to all of its constituents, and therefore the school tries to keep fees as low as possible.

ISZL’s 2015-16 Operating Income was CHF41’072’232 and Expenses were CHF40’963’518 with 71% of expenses going to personnel and 8.4% for instructional expenses and student services. Remaining expenses were for logistics (facility maintenance, rental), depreciation and financial expenses, capital endowment, and administration.

Fund for Excellence donations of all sizes make a difference by creating a truly remarkable educational experience above and beyond tuition. ISZL families are encouraged to support the Fund for Excellence at a level that is appropriate for them.

I volunteer at ISZL... Why should I support the Fund for Excellence and capital campaign?

Everyone in the ISZL community has a role to play in the success and advancement of the School. We are especially appreciative of parent volunteers. Without the countless hours of volunteer work, the leadership and creativity, and the commitment to excellence, ISZL would not be the special school it is. Parent volunteers inspire other parents to volunteer. Donors to the Fund for Excellence inspire others to donate. A donation, of any amount, to the School’s annual fund shows support of the mission of the School, and is an example to others. We hope that all community members are inspired to advance ISZL through a donation to the Fund for Excellence.

We give to other organisations that we feel need the money more. Why give to ISZL?

Giving to charities is good! Parents and other adults who give to charities and non-profit institutions and organizations provide excellent role models for our students who are learning about the importance of serving others through the ISZL curriculum.

ISZL is not a charity; it is a non-profit school with an important mission. There is a difference between charity and philanthropy.

Charity tends to be a short-term, emotional, immediate response, focused primarily on rescue and relief, whereas philanthropy is much more long-term, more strategic, focused on rebuilding. There is charity, which is good, and then there is problem-solving charity, which is called philanthropy.
- Steve Gunderson, Former President of the Council on Foundations

While charity addresses immediate needs, philanthropy is how people achieve their greater missions. If you believe in the mission of ISZL, then we hope you will support it by making a gift to the Fund for Excellence or capital campaign.

Who gives to ISZL?

We encourage our entire community, including parents, faculty, alumni, friends, businesses and corporations, to support our students and teachers through the Fund for Excellence and our fundraising events. To learn more about how your company or business can get involved with these events, please email the Development Office at development(at)

Our family won’t be at ISZL next year – why should we give?

Donations are immediately allocated! As funds are raised, we will spend it directly on our students’ and campus needs. All donors should feel proud that, even if their time at ISZL is short, they have made the School better for current AND future students. Just as donors in the past give generously to make ISZL excellent today, so donors today will ensure ISZL remains strong in the years to come. Be a part of the legacy!

How can my family give or give again?

Please visit our Ways to Give page for giving options. US taxpayers are invited to give through our US 501(c)(3) non-profit. There is no limit to how many times or how much a donor can give to ISZL! And there are many different ways to give to the school (besides financial contributions). Please visit the Supporting ISZL webpage to learn more.

Is my gift tax deductible?

In many cases, yes. ISZL is a non-profit foundation (Stiftung), a legal entity under the Swiss Civil Code. Its operation is overseen by the Canton of Zug's foundation supervisory council (Stiftungsrataufsicht) with ISZL being administered with its approval. Gifts to the school may be tax-deductible to the extent allowed by Swiss law. Our ID number (UID) is CHE-107.327.678 and our Handelsregister number is CH-020.7.903.331-1.

ISZL is represented by the Chapel & York Foundation, a US non-profit organisation tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the US Internal Revenue Code and is governed by an independent board of directors. Gifts to ISZL via Chapel & York Foundation may be tax-deductible to the extent allowed by US law.

How much should I give?

Participation is key to our success. Please give what is reasonable to you. Every contribution is highly valued and will be put to good use. 

When should I give?

We invite you to give throughout the school year. Give whenever it is most convenient and beneficial to you.

Can I give anonymously?

Yes, donors also have the option to remain anonymous if they wish. Information about all donations remains strictly confidential.

Does ISZL accept matching gifts?

Yes! ISZL is grateful to the many corporations that support the school through various initiatives including matching gifts. Please contact your employer’s human resources department or the Development Office at development(at) for more information on matching gifts.

How can I track ISZL's fundraising progress?

Throughout the year ISZL will share fundraising success stories through the website, the eNewsletter, and the ISZL Facebook page.

Can I make a recurring gift?

Yes, you can make a recurring gift to support the Fund for Excellence at ISZL.

To make a recurring gift using your Swiss bank account, simply set up a Standing Order using your e-banking tool. You choose the donation amount and schedule yourself.

Employees of ISZL may request recurring FFE donations as part of their paycheck deductions. Please coordinate directly with the Business Office.

Please let us know the amount per month you intend to give and if you would like to direct your gift to a particular FFE Project or the Capital Fund by completing a Pledge Form under our MAKE A GIFT page.

If you would like to make a recurring gift in US dollars, you may do so through the Friends of ISZL donation page where you can choose your Donation Amount and Donation Schedule (One Time, Monthly, Quarterly, Annually).

Still have questions?

ISZL's Advancement team would be happy to help! Please contact:

Lorna Graham

Lorna Graham

Advancement Coordinator
Jessica Richards

Jessica Richards

Development and Alumni Relations Coordinator
Felicia Smith

Felicia Smith

Director of Institutional Advancement