California Community Foundation Announces $1.7 Million Investment in Los Angeles Public Schools
Ford Foundation will contribute bulk with $1.5 million for extended learning opportunities for low-income high school students
LOS ANGELES – July 20, 2012 – California Community Foundation (CCF) has secured a $1.5 million investment from the Ford Foundation in extended learning time initiatives in up to 15 high schools within the nation’s second largest school district, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), as part of a strategy for improving student outcomes in high poverty communities. CCF will also contribute $200,000 to the initiatives.
“Expanded learning time benefits families as well as students and teachers because there are so few opportunities outside of school for kids in poorer neighborhoods and many hardworking parents are not at home during after-school hours,” said CCF President and CEO, Antonia Hernández. “We need to do better at ensuring that school-age kids are in productive, supervised activities during the highest-risk hours of the day.”
Ms. Hernández is among more than 100 educational and civic leaders who have joined the Time to Succeed Coalition, a national movement to equalize learning opportunities for all children. Coalition members include LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy, the Ford Foundation, businessman and philanthropist Eli Broad, and Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers, among others.
A significant portion of the investment by the Ford Foundation with CCF will help leverage two important school reform efforts, the comprehensive Community Schools initiative and the Linked Learning model, in eight high schools in Metro L.A., five schools in East L.A., one school in South L.A., and three schools in Southeast L.A. A large portion will support community engagement, family organizing and public education to ensure the long-term sustainability of school reforms.
Another portion will be pooled with federal and state funds designated for out-of-school time initiatives at six high schools in association with community-based partners such as the Alliance for Better Community (ABC), Community Coalition, InnerCity Struggle (ICS). A small amount will be dedicated to meetings and workshops in order to ensure access to research and resources, facilitate planning and assistance, and share best practices across school sites.
“The Ford Foundation is committed to this effort because we know the impact when children are given the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Jeannie Oakes, the Ford Foundation’s director of the Educational Opportunity and Scholarship Programs. “We should all be embracing a longer, more smartly designed school day for our children.”
The $1.5 million investment from the Ford Foundation in LAUSD is a gain for Los Angeles as a whole because it also represents more philanthropic dollars from national funders for local needs and nonprofits. It is one result of an escalated effort by CCF, as L.A.’s foundation, to serve as a local partner for national funders.
The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For 75 years, it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided b its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.
California Community Foundation (CCF) is a public, charitable organization serving Greater Los Angeles in multiple capacities since 1915. It encourages philanthropy by individuals, families, companies and organizations, and serves as a steward of their charitable funds and legacies. It makes grants to and collaborates with nonprofits to address needs in their communities, with emphasis on the most vulnerable individuals and families. It convenes and engages with private, public and nonprofits sector partners in community problem solving and advocacy work. For more information, visit www.calfund.org or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/calfund.