Children First Fund: The Chicago Public Schools Foundation 


Children First Fund: The Chicago Public Schools Foundation (CFF), established in July of 1996, is the districts 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The CFF mission is to support CPS’ ultimate goal of ensuring that every child in every school is on track at every stage in his or her career to graduate prepared for success in postsecondary education and employment. In this capacity, the CFF acts as a flow-through or fiscal agent for foundation and business grants and individual donations to CPS schools and administrative units to fund programs that supplement educational opportunities.


  • Provide fiscal agent services for foundation and business grants to CPS departments and schools to fund programs that supplement educational opportunities
  • Maintain relationships with external donors

Current initiatives

  • Providing excellent instruction: Providing schools with a choice of aligned instructional packages in the core subjects, with curricula, materials, assessments, teacher professional development, coaching and student supports
  • Attracting and developing talented people: Recruiting, hiring, developing and advancing the best people in the world to teach in, lead and support our schools
  • Expanding options and opportunities for all students: Expanding the school day and expanding choices of quality schools for our students
  • Managing performance: Managing performance by holding everyone in CPS – students, parents, teachers, principals and administrators – responsible for meeting high expectations.


CFF, created in 1996, is the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization for the Chicago Public Schools (CPS). The CFF has brought in over $100 million to CPS since its inception, over $85 million of which was raised in the past five years. Currently, CFF provides fiscal services for over 180 CPS programs/schools.

Make a donation

  • Make a donation to individual schools: Donations can be sent to CFF to support an individual school, for a specific school program or to be used where need is deemed greatest
  • Support your own cause: CPS serves over 400,000 students and we can tailor donations to specific interests, populations, subject matters or needs. We have identified funding needs in the following areas: math and science, music, arts and culture, literacy, regional gifted centers, sports, technology and college scholarships
  • Donations by check should be mailed to the address below with a letter of intent. Online donations can be made at For more information or to discuss support opportunities, please call 773-553-1542.


Online Donations

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Children First Fund and, most importantly, the children of Chicago’s public schools, thank you for your consideration.

Contact Information

Children First Fund
42 W. Madison St., Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: (773) 553-1542
Fax: (773) 553-2601

Page Last Modified on Wednesday, June 24, 2015