If Elected, Jeb Bush Will Privatize Public Education

Kiersten Marek:

We’re already part of the way there. If elected, Jeb Bush will take us as far as privatization can go.

Originally posted on Diane Ravitch's blog:

Matthew Pulver, writing at Salon.com, describes Jeb Bush’s dangerous belief in privatization and free markets in education.

It is not so much a belief as an ideology, one that is impervious to evidence. The many studies showing thAt privately managed charters do not get higher test scores than public schools do not register with Jeb. The numbers of charters that open with grand promises and soon lose their doors with big debts does not affect his belief system. He is a zealot for school choice, period.

Not even the failure of the charter school he founded in Liberty City, a poor black neighborhood, dampens his passion for charters and vouchers.

Writes Pulver:

“There’s nothing else as large in all of society. Not the military—nothing—is bigger.”

“That’s how Randy Best, Jeb Bush’s business partner, sees public education, as an untapped market where untold billions are to be made when kids and…

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Why foundations should embrace radical transparency

Originally posted on Nonprofit Chronicles:

TransparencyPhilanthropy is a “black box,” writes David Callahan, the founder and editor of Inside Philanthropy. “If you don’t think philanthropy is maddeningly opaque, it’s because you’re deep inside the sector.”

He’s exaggerating, but not by much. Some foundations don’t disclose their donors. All are required by law to report on their grants, but many are slow to do so. Finally, there’s scant information about the most important question of all: How effective are foundations when they spend their money?

Foundations would do well to become radically more transparent and accountable, not merely for their own sake, but to set an example for the nonprofits they fund. After all, if foundations, with their influence, deep pockets and professional staff, don’t demand more transparency and accountability from nonprofits, who will? They are key to unlocking the immense potential of the nonprofit sector.

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Who’s Getting Grants From This New Fund For Collective Impact in K-12?

Back in April, we wrote about StriveTogether and its efforts to bring collective impact funding to education reform. Recently, through the Cradle to Career Accelerator Fund, StriveTogether pooled $15 million to help communities work on educational improvement.

The Cradle to Career Accelerator Fund is designed to speed up the process of bringing in multiple stakeholders to address education, while building a new and improved civic framework for the future of education and career readiness.

via Who’s Getting Grants From This New Fund For Collective Impact in K-12? – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Shut Up About the Clinton Foundation’s Problems for a Minute to Look at Its Programs  – Inside Philanthropy

With all the hype in the media about the Clinton Foundation, we wonder how many Americans actually know what the foundation does—or how many members of the media, for that matter.

Listening to news reports, you’d think the sole purpose of this outfit is to help the Clintons get rich and do favors for their shady friends. And while, to be sure, some of the reports about specific donors have been troubling—and suggest questionable judgment by the Clintons—what’s missing is a broader, more balanced look at how the foundation mobilizes money for good causes and who, in reality, puts up most of that money. (Hint: It’s not dictators looking for favors from the State Department.) While people shouldn’t stop asking hard questions about the foundation, they should pay more attention to its approach and programs.

via Shut Up About the Clinton Foundation’s Problems for a Minute to Look at Its Programs  – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Voices That “Need to be Heard.” Inside OSF’s Global Work with Marginalized Groups – Inside Philanthropy

In the United States, discussion of marginalized groups often revolves around terms like discrimination, rights, and integration. Elsewhere in the world, though, the focus is more on inclusion versus exclusion—which, arguably, is a more comprehensive and useful frame.

A commitment to battling exclusion is core to the Open Society Foundations, which has offices in over 30 countries and partners in dozens more. By now, the OSF story is the stuff of legend—how George Soros, the philosopher hedge fund king, used his market winnings to help bring down communism and went on to bankroll a global network of local foundations to advance the ideals of open society, making sure “no one has a monopoly on the truth” and no groups are consigned to the margins.

via Voices That “Need to be Heard.” Inside OSF’s Global Work with Marginalized Groups – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

A New Foundation That Believes in the Power of Play – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

A new foundation is on the scene to help bolster funding for early childhood development. And what do they want little kids to do? Calculus in the cradle? Digital skills training in diapers? SAT prep in kindergarten?

Thankfully, no. The Caplan Foundation for Early Childhood has its priorities straight and knows a few things about how to support our littlest folk, and more academic pressure and testing is not what they are into. Play—physical, emotional, verbal—in early childhood is what this foundation is all about.

via A New Foundation That Believes in the Power of Play – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Still in the Dark: Why Philanthropy Remains a Black Box — Inside Philanthropy

When I started Inside Philanthropy 18 months ago, I was certainly interested in the age-old questions about transparency and accountability in the sector, but I can’t say I was preoccupied with them. To me, the most exciting stories are about how funders are trying to solve big problems, often in new ways. I still think that, and IP tries to tell those stories every day at a moment when more cool funders are doing more cool things than ever.

Over time, though, I’ve become ever more frustrated by just how hard it is to gauge what philanthropists are doing or who in this sector is having the most impact.

Compared to earlier times, I know the sector is doing a better job of assessing itself. And I know that more answers are now available to certain questions, like how grantees perceive funders, what kinds of collaborations are most successful, how best to evaluate grants, and so on. All that’s a good thing, and the pioneers of that work—like the Center for Effective Philanthropy—have moved the ball forward in impressive ways.

via Still in the Dark: Why Philanthropy Remains a Black Box – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.