Summit’s independence as a public charter school is what allows us to be the vibrant and tuition-free school we are, but our self-governance comes with a price. While we have tremendous creativity and flexibility in our curriculum, we receive significantly less government funding per student than a traditional public school (~25% less) and zero funding for capital improvements. We rely on private funding on an annual basis to fully fund the critical needs of our school children, faculty and staff, and facilities. 

By choosing to donate to Summit today, you will help us sustain the unique qualities of a Summit education and have a purposeful  impact on the life of a student. Thank you for believing in our school and community!

Ways To Give


Summit's model of education brings immense value to the lives of our students—a level of impact made possible by the continued support of our community, family, and alumni donors through our annual giving campaigns.

There are many ways to make a charitable contribution to our school. Each gift option has tax benefits to the donor as the Summit Charter School Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization under Federal Tax ID 56-2039872.


Gifts of Cash

The majority of gifts received to the Summit Charter School Foundation are in the form of cash contributions for which donors, depending on their individual financial circumstances, may receive tax benefits. The school may put gifts of cash to immediate use for programs, endowments, and projects.

To make a monetary gift, you may contact the Foundation directly or donate online in secure transactions via PayPal. You will receive a receipt of your transaction instantly.

 If you have questions about making gifts of any kind to the Summit Charter School Foundation, volunteering or participating in other ways, please call or write:

Summit Charter School Foundation
Attn: Melissa Hudson
P.O. Box 2493
Cashiers, NC 28717

Mailing Address for Gifts 

Gifts should be made payable to the Summit Charter School Foundation and mailed to P.O. Box 2493, Cashiers, NC 28717. The Summit Charter School Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization for both federal and state tax purposes. Your contribution is fully deductible to the extent of the law. The Foundation's federal tax identification number is 56-2039872. All gifts made to the Foundation support the school.

Thanks in advance for making Summit a giving priority! 

Keep Summit Unique by Supporting our 2020-21 Annual Fund,

Small class sizes, field excursions, lego robotics, international studies, advanced curricula, exceptional facilities - they truly make a difference in our children’s success. In this section, you'll find many ways in which parents, grandparents, and community members can participate in the ongoing support of these programs and our children through financial commitments.

This year, our greatest fundraising need is donations to our operating budget, playing a crucial and immediate role in enriching the lives of our students and teachers. The theme of our current annual campaign is “One Summit Family” because, truly, we are all in this together to ensure a quality education for our children. Recognizing the value of the investments our donors make, longtime supporter Don Sentell has agreed to a generous MATCHING GIFT of up to $100,000! Every gift raised for the One Summit Family campaign by December 31, 2020, dollar-for-dollar, will be matched by Mr. Sentell for operations. Thank you, Don, for your unwavering commitment to our school. Here's how you can support this year's One Summit Family campaign: 


For our community and alumni donors, we are excited to add a new layer

of personalization to your annual gift so you can feel a stronger connection to the school – as a donor you will be paired with a Summit student, creating a personal link between our donors and students! Benefits of sponsoring a student include: 

  • One-on-one correspondence with your paired student

  • Invitation to end-of-school-year Meet & Greet and Trail Hike at Summit with your student

  • Recognition on Summit website and printed materials

  • Pre-sale ticket access to the inaugural 2021 Festival of Trees – a new fundraiser benefiting Summit Charter School (Save the Dates! Toast of the Trees, our summer kick-off party, will take place on July 29, 2021. The Festival of Trees will take place November 26-27, 2021)

  • Reserved seating at Summit’s inaugural high school graduation in May 2022

  • The opportunity to invest in a student’s education and sustain the qualities of a Summit education, such as small class sizes, stellar faculty and staff for individualized and character education, hands-on and innovative curriculum, and experiential field excursions

  • The opportunity to improve quality of life in our beloved Cashiers-Highlands plateau

You can make a one-time gift, divide your gift into several payments, or establish an ongoing, automatic gift payment. Click here to learn more about our giving levels and to sponsor a student today! For donations by check, please make your check payable to the Summit Charter School Foundation and mail your gift to P.O. Box 2493, Cashiers, NC 28717.


Annual donations to the Family Fund come from our Summit parents, grandparents, and family businesses to further help Summit bridge the gap between what we receive from the government and the actual cost of educating a student. Each year a Family Fund committee is formalized and creates a fun grade-by-grade fundraising contest, which can be viewed here. If you are ready to invest in your children's education by donating now, please mail a check or click here.

Facilities Endowment and Planned Giving

JERRY JOHNSON LEGACY FUND: In October 2019, our Summit family lost a beloved member of its school community: Gerald “Jerry” Johnson. Jerry was a Summit Charter School Foundation board member and a grandparent. He was a fierce champion of Summit and had a tremendous impact on the school. The Jerry Johnson Legacy Fund has been formed in his memory, with all gifts restricted to maintaining school facilities in the future. This is a first step to ensuring a future of enduring vitality for Summit in addition to securing fiscal stability. 


PLANNED GIVING is another way to ensure your support of Summit and is an important part of your estate planning. By including Summit in your estate plan, you make a statement of your confidence in our school. and it is a very powerful way to ensure our future strength.


If you would like to contribute a future gift through a trust, life insurance, gift annuities, or a provision in a will, please contact or 828-743-5755. 

Cashiers Festival of Trees

In November 2021, the Summit Charter School Foundation will introduce a new signature fundraising event, the Cashiers Festival of Trees.


Cashiers Festival of Trees is a multi-day, family-friendly event during Thanksgiving weekend where guests bid on decorated trees and holiday décor, enjoy a wide variety of holiday performances, create personalized children’s crafts, celebrate literacy on the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Storytime Stage, and shop one-of-a-kind gifts in the Gift Zone.


The Festival will take place on Friday, November 26 – Saturday, November 27, 2021, at the Summit Center, the athletics and fine arts facility at Summit Charter School. 

While raising money for the school is the primary focus of the event, the SCS Foundation has decided to spread the holiday spirit of giving: when a non-profit decorates a tree or wreath, 20% of the item’s sale will go BACK to the participating non-profit, creating a collaborative initiative to benefit our fellow charities and their worthy causes. Supporting our entire community is very important to our cause and the school’s overall mission.

Learn more on the official Cashiers Festival of Trees website by clicking here.


Chloe's Lemon-aid Stand

Chloe's Lemon-aid Stand for Education: Chloe Crawford's student-run lemonade stand had a remarkable revival during the summer of 2019. Read about its continued success here and we would like to extend our sincere gratitude to our amazing community and student volunteers. 



Summit Charter School embraces and encourages involvement from the community at large.

Here are the wonderful organizations that partnered with the school in 2020-21.*

*Summit just released a new website and the below list in in the process of being updated. Please visit our website in September for an updated list. Thank you.

A Jones Company
A.L. Williams Jr., Family Foundation
Acadia Northstar
America's Mattress
Appalachain Harvest
Bunny Bites Carrot Cakes
Burlingame Country Club
Camp Merrie-Woode
Canyon Kitchen
Cashiers Area Chamber of Commerce
Cashiers Community Fund
Cashiers Family Dental
Cashiers Farmers Market
Cashiers-Glenville Fire Department
Cashiers Valley Fusion
Cedar Creek Racquet Club
Colonel Mustards
Consignment Market
Cornucopia Cheese Shop
Coward, Hicks & Siler
Crossroads Chronicle
Cullasaja Club of Highlands
Cullasaja Women's Outreach
Dark Cove Cheese
Ellen's Lovely Lady Accessories
Fiddlehead Designs
Francie Hargrove
Frank Vickery Pottery
Fressers Eatery
High Hampton
Highlands Falls
Highlands Playhouse
Kilwin's Chocolate
Macon Bank
Macon Printing
Monday's House of Design

Mountain Dog Day Spa
Mountain Home Management
Mountain Youth Charities
Mountaintop Golf & Lake Club
Nearly New Fine Furniture Consignment
Nectar Juice Bar
Old Edwards Club
Old Edwards Inn and Spa
Professional Party Rentals
Robin's Nest
Ruka's Table
Satulah Mountain Brewing Company
Scotlyn's Yard Nursery
Shore House Furniture
Signal Ridge Marina
Slab Town Pizza
Smitten of Highlands
Subway of Cashiers
Table 64
The Candy Bar
The Church of the Good Shepherd
The Cork and Barrel Lounge
The Corner Store
The Country Club of Sapphire Valley
The Laurel Magazine
The Lost Hiker
The Orchard
The Toy Store- Highlands
The Ugly Dog Pub & Dog House Café
Trillium Links & Lake Club
United Community Bank
Valentine's Photo Studio
Wade Hampton
Wade Hampton Donor Advised Fund
Webb Insurance
Wild Thyme Café, Cashiers
Wildcat Cliffs
Woo Skincare & Cosmetics