Education Funding

Broad Foundation to Spend $23 Million on L.A. Charter Schools

By Lesli A. Maxwell — January 17, 2008 1 min read
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The expansion of charter schools in Los Angeles remains robust with the announcement last week that the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation will spend $23 million to help open 17 middle and elementary charter campuses by 2012.

That investment—announced in a Jan. 17 news conference—will be divided among three charter school entities.

The Knowledge Is Power Program, or KIPP, will receive $12 million to open four new schools—two elementary and two middle school campuses—in low-income neighborhoods in Los Angeles by 2010. KIPP already operates two schools in the city that together serve 700 students.

Aspire Public Schools, which is serving 900 students in three schools that are open in the Huntington Park area of Los Angeles, will use $5 million from the foundation to open 13 new schools over the next four years.

The Broad Foundation will also give a $6 million, no-interest loan to Pacific Charter School Development Inc., a nonprofit organization that helps charter schools find and lease space, and finance and build facilities.

The new grants bring the Broad Foundation’s total spending on charter schools in Los Angeles to $56 million since 2002.

The foundation gave $10.5 million to Green Dot Public Schools in late 2006 to expand its network of small high schools that operate in some of the city’s most disadvantaged neighborhoods.

It also gave $6.5 million to the Alliance for College-Ready Public Schools to help open 13 new schools.

“High-quality public charter schools in Los Angeles are showing dramatic results in improving student achievement, and we need to do what we can to make sure the best models are available to as many students as possible,” Eli Broad said in a statement announcing the latest commitment.

There are 125 charter schools operating within the boundaries of the 700,000-student Los Angeles Unified School District, the most for any city or school district in the nation, according to the California Charter Schools Association.

A version of this article appeared in the January 23, 2008 edition of Education Week

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