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Confronting Systemic Inequity in Education: High Impact Strategies for Philanthropy

Resource type: Research Report

National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy |

This report looks at how philanthropy can be more effective at helping to reform and improve our nation’s school systems.

Every year, foundations provide billions in grants for education. Yet, our education system is in crisis: American schoolchildren – especially those from vulnerable communities – remain trapped in a continuous cycle of inequities in educational access and opportunities.

How can philanthropy be more effective at deploying its limited resources to help reform and improve our nation’s school systems? How can philanthropy help break the cycle of persistent inequality, which undermines our American ideals that public education strengthens democracy and our economy, and promotes justice, equity and opportunity?

Confronting Systemic Inequity in Education offers two high impact strategies for education grantmakers to more effectively achieve their missions and help address the root causes of intergenerational inequalities. It recommends a deliberate focus on the needs of students from marginalized communities and on supporting efforts that seek to influence education policy in the country through advocacy, community organizing and civic engagement.

This is the first in a series of Philanthropy at Its Best reports from the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP) that invites grantmakers that focus on specific issues to rethink their funding strategies to generate the greatest impact. Future reports will be issued for funders concerned about health, the environment and the arts.

The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy is an Atlantic grantee.