According to the Foundation Center, which tracks and analyzes foundation giving, large foundations gave $1.23 billion in grants to elementary and secondary schools in 2003, the latest year for which data is available. That same year, higher education grants totaled $1.12 billion. It was a sharp turnaround from five years earlier, when K-12 grants were about $620 million, compared with $1.07 billion for higher education.My unsolicited advice to the superrich foundations: Don't pour money into existing school systems. Create your own quality schools. You have a wonderful model you can follow in the Core Knowledge program.
But it is not only the size of the grants that has changed. The nature of the philanthropy has undergone a profound shift.
"A lot of the old philanthropy was devoted to helping schools do what they were already doing," said Richard Lee Colvin, director of the Hechinger Institute at Teachers College at Columbia University. "The new group is saying, 'Let's try something different.' It's a lot of young, active entrepreneurial people - Bill Gates, Eli Broad, the Waltons, Dell, Milken - who want to change the schools, who want to use their money to support specific school reforms."
Sunday, August 21, 2005
Rolling in dough
Today's NYT has a report on the fastastic sums of money poured into the school system by foundations.