A new beginning has begun!

The process of seeking collaboration and support from the Shawnee Mission North High School, and the SMSD Administration has finally been concluded.

As the first President of the Shawnee Mission North Opportunity Fund, I am pleased to announce that the current skeleton staff of directors and officers are assembling additional volunteers, and an expanded board of directors, to begin the process of bringing the Opportunity Fund out of “suspended operations”. Over the course of the next 3-6 months, this team will begin anew to grow the size and scope of SMNOF.

Watch for new content appearing on the website, and on the SMNOF Facebook PAGE, as well as our imaginary Facebook alumnus – Give BACK! Expect to see other social media connections to the Shawnee Mission School District’s flagship Alma Mater – SHAWNEE MISSION NORTH HIGH SCHOOL!

SMSD Superintendent Hinson reminded us that “The mission of the S.M.N.O.F is noble …” in his recent email to our current officers, echoeing the words of SMN’s Principal, who introduced the Fund as a “Noble Endeavor” back in 2008. Completion of that noble mission now rests in the hands of our newly assembled team of volunteers … plus YOU – the alumni & community supporters of Shawnee Mission North High School’s students and their parents.

Emphasis will be on growing SMNOF as the ALUMNI organization it was initially intended to be, offering a common meeting point for all of the supporters of the Shawnee Mission North Community, especially its estimated 20,000+ alumni. A new approach for reaching out to SMN graduates will give you all a chance to bring the Opportunity Fund back to life, and stronger than ever, through a Supporting and Contributing Membership program. You can be among the first to RE-Register and join this unique community-based non-profit that will again‘Give BACK’ to the Alma Mater, simply by “Helping NORTH Students”.

Our six children (and two grandchildren, so far) attended SMN. Though not SMN alumni ourselves, my wife, Kathleen and I will actively support this talented, dedicated, and expanded team as they complete the work which will realize the Mission of SMNOF.

Thank you all for providing ongoing support of the SMNOF staff over the years, and for your concern that we all find a way to help the future alumni of good old SMN!


ERIC BERNDT, President

with Jason Young, VP and Jill Blakeley, Sec’y-Treas



The Opportunity Fund remains at-the-ready to bring assistance to low income students and families at North High School, whenever Principal Richard Kramer and North’s administration choose to invite us to address this rapidly growing need … Please read on …


Yep – the time is right to brainstorm about SMNOF,
Let’s explore gearing-up once again to “Help NORTH Students” !

The current Opportunity Fund Board [our skeleton crew] feels that the time is right for reaching out to our supporters, bringing key volunteers back together, and beginning the process of review & reorganization of SMNOF … to put us in a position of offering financial aid to in-need families & students at Shawnee Mission North.

Consider this our heartfelt invitation to North alumni and supporters to get in touch with our officers and let us know if you would like to participate in orchestrating a rebirth of the Opportunity Fund, and how you might help us do so.  In short, we are reaching out to all North alumni, and the NE Johnson County Community, to draw up a NEW blueprint for delivering financial assistance to North students.  We’d like to be “ready to go” again by the start of the 2014-2015 academic year.  Let us hear from you right away, and we’ll plan our first meeting.

Eric Berndt, President – SMNOF   EMAIL –
Jill Blakeley, Sec’y/Treas – SMNOF   EMAIL –
CALL Eric, or leave a message for Jill, at 913-722-3984

Click REGISTER (at and enter your contact information!





and read our latest post!

– – – AT THIS TIME, SMNOF REMAINS “On Hold” with all student financial aid suspended.

The Opportunity Fund staff announces that SMNOF will suspend all Mini-Scholarships, grants, and the processing of Financial Aid Requests & Opportunity Funding Applications [OFA’s] on March 31, 2013.
Many will ask, WHY?

“I see North as being equal with our sister schools but with some pockets of need. …need does not imply poverty.”  -SMN Principal Richard Kramer, April 2009

“There will be no partnership between SMNOF / SMSD / or SMN.”  -SMN Principal Richard Kramer, March 2010

“If SMNOF continues to send referrals back to us, or tries to negotiate …, we will no longer refer our students or families to SMNOF to help supplement their needs.”  -SMN Principal Richard Kramer, April 2011

“At the present time SM North is experiencing an exceptional year … we have developed new revenue opportunities over the years and we continue to meet the needs of “All” students who seek help.”   -SMN Principal Richard Kramer, February, 2013

“I see no need to meet with the current  [Opportunity Fund] leadership.”  -SMN Principal Richard Kramer, February, 2013

Parents, students, and teachers should make all future requests for financial assistance directly to:
Shawnee Mission North Principal, Richard Kramer
Contact him personally at 913-993-6900 or via this email link;


SMNOF has elected to reduce operations to a skeleton staff.  Our considerable financial reserves will be saved for a day when Shawnee Mission North’s principal expresses a need for, and an interest in, alumni & community financial aid for the students attending North.
A resounding “THANK YOU” goes out from the Opportunity Fund Board to those in the community who have generously donated their time or money to SMNOF’s mission.
Future announcements will be posted on this website and our Facebook PAGE, so please plan to visit us again.



SMNOF was established in 2008 to fulfill the need for a unique and revolutionary concept in community support of schools.   By providing needs-based financial aid to students attending Shawnee Mission North High School, for certain high school fees and expenses, SMNOF opened a door for North graduates to “Give Back to the Alma Mater”!  Small general grants through the Opportunity Funding Application [OFA] Process, plus specific Mini-Scholarships, became available to qualifying students and families at North, who demonstrate financial need.  Laptop computers and gift card awards were featured prizes in a student Essay Contest each semester.  A Teacher Supply Network (click TEACHERS PAGE, below) was established to connect staff needs with donations of materials and supplies from the community.  The SMNOF Caring Heart awards recognize select teachers at North for their support of the Opportunity Fund.

The Shawnee Mission North Opportunity Fund [SMNOF] is a non-profit Kansas Corporation recognized by the IRS as a 501-c-3 public charity.  It is funded primarily by Shawnee Mission North High School alumni, with additional support from local residents and businesses.  SMNOF is a financial “safety net” available to help students when limited school discretionary funds have been exhausted.  Using this plan, the Opportunity Fund offers a very personal approach to “Helping NORTH Students” … your contribution goes to a person in need – not a school administration budget.

Please take a moment to REGISTER in our All-School Registry.
Include yourself  amongst the alumni from the flagship of the Shawnee Mission School District, or simply as a supporter of SM North.
Please SHARE an EMAIL with your comments about the need for an organization like SMNOF at North High School – we promise to share it with North’s principal and staff!
If you’d like to help us help North, get in touch to learn more about our efforts, or to actively volunteer.
Regardless – THANK YOU for visiting!
Please download our BROCHURE and share what you learn with friends & classmates!  Find our SMNOF Facebook PAGE and ‘Like’ us!