Friday, October 16, 2009

Just Follow The Money

Take a look at the listing for “Grants and Contributions Paid” in the Broad Foundation’s 990s to get an idea of the organizations which Eli Broad supports. Those documents can be located on the National Center for Charitable Statistics Web site using the Employer Identification Number (EIN) 954686318. The National Center for Charitable Statistics (NCCS) is "the national clearinghouse of data on the nonprofit sector in the United States."

You won’t be surprised to learn that it is rare-to-non-existent for the Broad Foundation to make a gift to any traditional public K-12 school. On the other hand, for at least the past decade, Broad has regularly supported many organizations which are working hard to make the traditional public schools extinct.

The following are just a few of Broad’s favorite organizations, along with their Employer Identification Numbers (EINs).

  • Alliance for College Ready Public Schools - 954779029
  • Aspire Public Schools - 943311088
  • Broad Center for the Management of School Systems - 202692176
  • Center for Education Reform - 521847187
  • Center for Reform of School Systems Inc - 760681611
  • Excellent Education Development - 954766001
  • Green Dot Educational Project - 954679811
  • Leadership Public Schools Inc - 731643646
  • Los Angeles Parents Union - 202207418
  • New Leaders (aka New Leaders for New Schools) - 043519203
  • New Schools Fund, d/b/a NewSchools Venture Fund - 943281780

In viewing the 990s of the above recipients, you’ll find out how much “direct public support” they have received (philanthropic gifts, grants and other contributions). The sources are not listed, however the organizations' Web sites usually list the major supporters, so you can start to track the sources from there.

Janelle Scott published a paper last spring, "The Politics of Venture Philanthropy in Charter School Policy and Advocacy." Scott is an Associate Professor at UC Berkeley, formerly of NYU. Her paper explains the billionaires' strategy to insert charter schools into communities by the careful maneuvering of their immense foundation-giving. Read more about her investigation here.

According to Scott, the "gifts" of these foundations are going to a broad range of

  • charter advocacy groups
  • pro-charter research organizations
  • alternative teacher, principal, and superintendent training programs
  • charter school development organizations

You’ll notice that almost all of the education-oriented organizations which Broad supports can be categorized into one of these four groups.

In the name of "philanthropy," a highly functioning network has now been established by the corporate forces with the purpose to increase the number of charter schools in the U.S. The portrait of this network is clearly revealed when following the “education reform” destinations of Eli Broad's money.

DON'T BE FOOLED. This network was NOT established to improve education for America's shrinking middle class, nor for its growing underclass. This project was undertaken by a small set of people who are obsessed with money and power. They are intent on undermining our public schools (and what's left of our democracy) by using an assortment of approaches -- each one potentiating the other -- with the ultimate goal to:

  • destabilize communities by fostering the growth of competing and bickering factions
  • detach schools from the democratic process (the government)
  • continue to cut spending on public education
  • transfer control of public schools from the American citizenry into the hands of private business

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