Philanthropy at

Like all private schools, Magellan requires investments of time, talent and treasure to provide a robust and ever-improving educational experience to its students. Through fundraising and an active parent association, our community comes together as philanthropists  to support our mission to provide an exceptional, global education to all students.

Time & Talent

Our school has a vibrant parent association, Magellan International School Parents Association (MISPA), with active involvement of parents working together with faculty and administration. All parents and guardians of Magellan students are members of MISPA and are encouraged to volunteer throughout the school year. Each year, MISPA partners with the school to create a community of learners who are internationally minded and committed to service. MISPA focuses on creating a positive community atmosphere and enriching the educational life of our children by organizing annual events and parent education programs, and supporting teachers through appreciation events and our room parent program.


Magellan requires investment beyond tuition to provide a robust and ever-improving educational experience to its students. In fact, approximately 8-10% of the school’s annual operating budget each year comes directly from donations to the school. Through gifts of treasure to the Magellan Annual Fund and our annual Noche de Gala event, our community is shaped and flourishes because of the investments of our supporters.

Recommended volunteer hours/year/family

Average donation per Magellan student in 2019-2020

Room Parents volunteering in 2020-2021

Time, Talent & Treasure
Gifts in Action

The impact of philanthropy on our community is indelible. Every student at Magellan benefits from the generosity of others through annual donations (via the Magellan Fund) as well as investments made in infrastructure due to fundraising priorities at Noche de Gala. Through volunteer efforts, our students and parents come together to enhance and enrich every child’s experience..

Design + Making

In 2016, Magellan parents Scott Francis and Cindy Lo donated funds to build and equip the school’s design and maker lab, train teachers and staff on design thinking approaches to teaching and hire the school’s first Innovation Director. The i.lab and its team continues to work on building problem solving skills and providing students the opportunity to experience a myriad of high and low tech design tools and ways of solving problems.

Learn More about Innovation at Magellan


As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold across the US in the spring of 2020, the Magellan community responded to ensure that all families could remain at the school, regardless of the financial impact of this crisis. Through one week in April, our community donated $423,000 to provide additional financial aid resources for the upcoming years. These donations – anchored by one $200,000 challenge gift – has supported countless families and students.

Learn More about Financial Aid

Leadership Award

Established in 2019, the Erin Defossé Inspirational Leadership Award recognizes a member of the Magellan International School community whose exceptional service to our school and efforts to support and promote Magellan are exemplary. The award is named in recognition of the school’s founder, Erin Defossé, whose insight, leadership, service ethic and commitment gave him the strength and courage to establish Magellan International School and grow it into a strong, vibrant international, bilingual community.

Meet the 2020 Erin Defossé Inspirational Leadership Award recipient