For over two decades the Schott Foundation has been a bridge, connecting philanthropy with community to resource broad based community-led movements for education equity. Part of building and reinforcing that bridge includes challenging structural racism in philanthropy and uplifting solutions rooted in equity through critical and thoughtful dialogue and trust in the power of community voices and community organizing for sustained change.
A new report released by the Alliance for Quality Education reveals that the inexcusable underfunding of New York's public schools hits districts with Black and Latinx students the hardest.
In the 2016 presidential election, only 58% of eligible voters went to the polls, meaning almost half of people that could vote, either were not able to or chose not to. Addressing massive gaps in voter registration and voter turnout is critical to ensuring all economically marginalized voters are represented, and when everyone’s voice is represented at the polls, policies are put in place that actually lead to measurable decreases in income inequality. So, how can we remove voting barriers? And what is the federal government's role in protecting our sacred right to vote?
On behalf of the Schott Foundation for Public Education, I would like to take this moment to congratulate Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum for being selected as the Democratic nominee for governor of the state of Florida. The media called it an upset victory, and certainly the results defied the experts and pundits. But I’ve known Andrew Gillum for close to two decades, as a friend, staunch advocate for an opportunity to learn for all students and ultimately as a colleague as a member of the Schott Foundation Board of Directors. Defying the odds is what Andrew does. Since his first election to the Tallahassee City Commission as a student, its youngest ever member, continuing throughout his career as a public servant, he has brought indefatigable energy, deep thoughtfulness, a compelling vision and courage to every organizing endeavor. Organizing — bringing people together, encouraging them to believe in themselves and what they can achieve together. Florida’s primary voters clearly saw these qualities in Andrew when they propelled him to victory.
I recently had the honor of attending the premiere of Personal Statement, a film by Julie Dressner and co-directed by Edwin Martinez that follows three high school seniors who were trained to support their peers through the college application process — while applying to college themselves. Listening to the film’s protagonists speak about the power of a youth-led model to address inequity in college access, I could not help but think about all of the youth organizers from the Urban Youth Collaborative. Since 2005, UYC has been fighting to develop and get funding for a youth-led college access model as a part of their College Pathways campaign. More than 13 years ago, those youth organizers explained their motivations:
In writing my forthcoming book Decolonizing Wealth, I had the honor and the pleasure of interviewing dozens of leaders from foundations, community organizations, and financial institutions. I asked them to speak candidly about the dynamics of race and power that they encounter in their work with money, and I asked them to share ideas for how we could decolonize wealth. From the hours and hours of audio recordings, and pages and pages of transcriptions, only a few snippets could be included in the book. So I’m happy to share some of the outtakes here.
It's with joy and sadness that I announce that our friend, colleague and partner Dr. Cassie Schwerner has been selected to be the next Executive Director of the Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility in New York City.
On Thursday, August 2, Jeff Bryant of the Education Opportunity Network moderated a Netroots Nation panel on education privatization in New Orleans, and the lessons we can learn from the struggle of New Orleans residents to reclaim their public schools.
Our new office has a wonderful view of the Boston skyline, and it’s close to some of our grantee and philanthropic partners. We hope you’ll visit!
We must continue to stand with our brothers and sisters from other nations that are fighting for their human rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We also have an opportunity to use this moment and the power of our collective passion to fight against the family separation that has become common place in America over the past several decades, often unnoticed and without the same passion and resistance. Any time we lock up adults or children for nonviolent crimes, instead of showing compassion for their situation and a productive path forward, we are separating families. Instead, we need to adopt Loving Systems. Systems that take individual circumstances into consideration and create access to supports and rehabilitation that keep families together and enable them to thrive.
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