Know your nonprofit: Bitney Prep High School |

Know your nonprofit: Bitney Prep High School

Some of Bitney Prep High School's art students contributed to the permanent art display at the Nevada County Office of Education.
Submitted photo |

More Information

Contact: Russell Jones, 530-477-1235,


Facebook: Bitney Prep High School

Twitter: @BitneyPrep

Know Your Nonprofit is a weekly Q&A feature with western Nevada County nonprofit organizations.

What is your mission statement?

With collaborative, experiential, and traditional methods, Bitney imbues our students with profound curiosity, a love of learning, and a clear sense of self-direction.

Briefly, when and how did your nonprofit start?

The school, a public charter, was founded in 1998 by parents seeking an alternative approach to education and smaller class sizes for students.

What are the primary sources of funding?

State funding based upon enrollment.

How many employees does the organization have?

The on-site staff at Bitney consists of eight full time certificated teachers, a school director, dean of academics, business manager, and custodian.

Who is your primary audience, the people who benefit the most from your organization?

We serve all students in grades nine through 12. Our school is uniquely suited to students who want to be part of a small, close-knit community of teachers and learners where they can align their learning with their interests and passions.

What is your primary service area (specific city, countywide, the region?)

As a public school our school is open to all students in Nevada County and beyond.

List the biggest achievements in your nonprofit’s history (up to three).

We’ve offered a viable alternative educational model to local students for over 18 years.

During the 2016-17 school year we affiliated with the Big Picture Schools Network, ( to support our strong academic program combined with mentored student internships in the community.

We can truly say that we live up to our motto that “Bitney is a place where students are known, respected and educated.”

List the biggest challenges you face (up to three).

We continually search for better ways to communicate our story to a larger audience so that we can serve more students.

As a small school, it is an ongoing challenge to deliver a rich and engaging educational program while hiring and keeping quality teachers, providing adequate facilities, purchasing instructional materials and equipping our students with technology tools — all funded primarily by state dollars.

What is your primary goal for the next year?

Continuing our efforts to deliver personalized learning opportunities that focus on real world activities and projects centered around mentored internships in the community.

What is your primary goal for the next three to five years?

To increase our services to students for whom our model best fits and to grow our enrollment.

What are your major fundraisers and the dates for these events in 2016?

Annual Giving Campaign — see — ongoing

Bitney’s Big Night Wine Tasting & Silent Auction — Held in mid-November

How can someone become involved with your organization?

Our governing board is currently looking for community members to help guide the school.

We are always seeking new internship mentors for our students.

We have many needs for donations and volunteers during the year.

What kind of skills are you looking for from volunteers?

A willingness to work with young adults to help guide their interests and learning into viable post-high school choices. Being a mentor means not only sharing professional expertise but also providing an example of what success in life looks like.

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