The Texas Permanent School Fund (PSF) is perhaps the best
kept secret in Texas, a Texas treasure that traces its history back to 1845 when a new state constitution established a perpetual education fund. Through the continued
prudence and diligence of the State Board of Education, today the PSF is the
nation’s largest educational endowment and continues to fulfill its original
mission: provide free textbooks to Texas students enrolled in the state’s
school districts and charter schools.
However, it also does more. In addition to instructional
materials, PSF support provides needed technology and supports overall public
education funding. Since 1960, the fund has put more than $27 billion into our
classrooms. The PSF also guarantees local bonds, saving taxpayers more than
$150 million and ensuring that more bond funds go to school construction
projects with less spent paying interest. Unfortunately, most Texans have
little or no awareness of this wonderful treasure.
The board has embarked upon an effort to raise the PSF’s
public profile, and as part of this branding effort, create artwork—a logo or
seal to be the fund’s brand image. While the board could have hired a
professional to create this artwork, we have opted to look to our talented
student artists. The board has launched a “Brand the Fund” Student Art Contest,
giving public high school students an opportunity to win a $3,000 cash prize, help
establish themselves in the profession and leave a lasting legacy. The contest’s
first runner-up will receive a $1,000 prize.
Who is eligible: Public
school students who are in grades 9-12 in the 2018-2019 school year.
Submission period: October
1 – 11:59 p.m. Central Daylight Time November 1, 2018
Entry requirements: All
entries must be submitted in one of the following formats, not to exceed 20 MB:
- High resolution PDF
- 300 dpi Photoshop JPG
- EPS or Adobe Illustrator file with text
converted to outlines
How do I submit my
entry: use this entry form. Once you have completed the form and clicked on the "Submit" button, you will see a screen saying "Thank You! Your submission has been received." A
copy of your submission will also be sent to the email address listed by the student artist. If you do not receive these acknowledgements, please resubmit your entry.
Are there any
required design features: The design should reflect the unique purpose and
history of the Permanent School Fund, which provides funding for instructional
materials and provides funding for each student enrolled in the public schools.
Check the resources section of this page for more details. But the board is not
requiring any specific images or colors for the design. We are counting on your
creativity to come up with something unique.
Who will determine
the contest winners: An initial judging panel made up of a State Board of
Education member, a Permanent School Fund staff member and three professional
graphic artists or branding professionals will judge the submissions on
creativity, design principles, scalability, transferability and arrangement.
This panel will select no more than 10 finalists.
The 15-member State Board of Education members will select
the winner and a runner-up at the November 16, 2018 board meeting. To guarantee
impartial judging, the names of the finalists and their school districts will
not be revealed to board members until the selection is finalized.
What do I win: The
student whose design is selected as the Permanent School Fund logo will receive
a cash prize of $3,000, a replica of the award-winning design, and a plaque with
the name of the designer will be placed in the Permanent School Fund
headquarters. The awards will be presented to the student at the February 1, 2019 board meeting in
The runner up will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a
certificate of commendation. The remaining finalists will receive a certificate of
See the contest rules for full details.
Learn more about
the Permanent School Fund:
Brief history (PDF, 376 KB)
Brief history (text)
Bond Guarantee Program