Three ways to get involved with CEPS:
How is CEPS structured?
CEPS is both a political action committee (527) that supports candidates and a 501(c)4 non-profit social welfare organization that functions as our general fund to support bond measures, parcel taxes, as well as outreach on educational issues. We function as sister units.
How is Community for Excellent Public Schools (CEPS) different from the Parent Teachers Association (SMMPTA) and Santa Monica Educational Foundation (SMEF)?
PTAs cannot endorse candidates, but as a political action committee, we can. PTAs raises money for individual sites. SMEF raises money for the whole district through families and corporate sponsors. We go after bigger fish. City funding, sales tax, parcel taxes. We work together with a broad coalition of community partners including the SMMPTA and SMEF.
Is a donation to CEPS tax deductible?
Donations to either our 527 or 501(c)4 are not tax deductible, per IRS regulations.
What happens when I donate to CEPS General Fund?
Donations to the 501(c)4 are private. There are no limits on personal or corporate contributions when donating. You opt in to CEPS emails and become a member of CEPS when you donate to the CEPS general fund. The 501(c)4 social welfare organization serves as CEPS General Fund. Donations support providing the community with information about public education in Santa Monica and Malibu from pre-k through community college. This can be done through website, ads, and other media to raise awareness of CEPS. In addition, should there be a local bond measure on a ballot to fund capital improvements at SMMUSD or SMC these 501(c)4 dollars can be used to campaign in favor of or against such a bond.
*What happens when I donate to the CEPS Candidate PAC?
Donations to the PAC are publicly reportable. There are no limits on personal or corporate contributions when donating. Donations to our 527 PAC pay for campaign mailers, social media ads, voter lists for canvassing and other political actions on behalf of those candidates for local elected office who our Steering Committee believes are best qualified to support public education.
Can I donate using a check?
You may mail check donations to our address on the bottom of this page. To insure your donation is processed properly, please clearly write the appropriate account name on the check: If the check is for the CEPS General Fund, please pay to the order of "CEPS Action Fund". If the check is for the Candidate PAC, please pay to the order of "CEPS" or "Community for Excellent Public Schools". To accept your donation, we are required by law to collect certain data from you. Please download and print the this form and include it with your donation.