Upon his death in 1660, William Paine bequeathed the 36 acres of Little Neck to a trust to benefit the school of Ipswich forever. On August 10, 2012, per a court settlement and trust administration order, the land of Little Neck was sold to cottage owners who had been land tenants. This sale converted the real estate assets to an investment trust and changed the trust governance. The beneficiary of the trust continues to be the Ipswich Public Schools.
The formal name of the newly reconstituted trust is ”Feoffees of the Grammar School in the Town of Ipswich Trust”. It is governed by seven “New Feoffees”: two community members appointed by each of the Board of Selectman, the Finance Committee and the School Committee and a seventh appointed by the old Feoffees.
The purpose is to support the Ipswich Public Schools. The educational uses of the distributed funds shall be determined by the Ipswich School Committee, for supplemental enrichment programs and uses that provide educational enhancement for Ipswich public school students.
The New Feoffees pledge to adhere to best practices for charitable trusts; to provide complete transparency to the citizens of Ipswich; and to be in open and regular communication with the School Committee, Board of Selectmen and Finance Committee. The group is committed to establishing and implementing prudent policies and procedures to grow the corpus, distribute funds, hire professional service providers and report to stakeholders.
The New Feoffees will operate to balance the interests of present and future generations of Ipswich school children, so that the trust fulfills Mr. Paine’s intent to support the schools in perpetuity.