The Fund for Education Success (FES)
FOR STUDENTS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS, CHILD WELFARE, AND JUVENILE JUSTICE
This workgroup is operating in partnership with the Youth Transition Funders Group.
As foundations whose work focuses on improving educational outcomes for marginalized students, we understand that homelessness, child welfare, and juvenile justice are adverse experiences that impact but do not define young people.
Unfortunately, our public systems currently are comprised of programs that often operate in silos and fail to recognize and address the intersectionality of students’ lives. While these students often share similar and overlapping experiences, the public agencies and programs serving them often do not interact or partner to address these students’ needs holistically.
Philanthropic foundations working in partnership with public systems are uniquely positioned to support systems integration and improve service coordination and delivery for this population of vulnerable students.
To strengthen the educational environment and improve the well-being of students experiencing homelessness, child welfare, and juvenile justice by making investments that create or facilitate conditions for steady educational improvements that have a high likelihood of achieving dramatic population-level change
Educational outcomes for students experiencing homelessness, child welfare, and juvenile justice that are on par with the general student population
- Raikes Foundation*
- Stuart Foundation*
- Walter S. Johnson Foundation
*Steering Committee member
FES 2023-2024 grantees include:
Investments and Progress to Date
To date, FES has executed the following phases of its work:
- Phase 1 (2021):
Conducted an analysis of root causes and relevant public/private investments.
- Phase 2 (2022):
Initiated a relationship with the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to establish 3 Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) positions within ED and provided initial support to develop an intersectional field-building strategy. IPAs include Alexia Everett (Stuart Foundation), Dawn Raines (Treehouse), and Bree Levy (SchoolHouse Connection).
- Phase 3 (2023):
Activated a pooled fund through JustFund and aligned funding through initial grants to further develop the emerging intersectional investment strategy that includes complementary federal-, regional-, state-, and local-level activities.
Phase 4 Investment Strategies
FES executes grantmaking that:
- Advances strategic and supportive policies at the federal and state levels targeting individual student groups and intersectional work across student groups.
- Supports the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data that identifies root causes, systemic barriers, and viable policy and practice solutions.
- Develops a compelling communications framework to build public knowledge and mobilize key audiences to take action.
- Promotes public resource strategies to sustain prevention and intervention services and supports adequately and equitably.
Current Areas of Funding
Supporting the Interdepartmental Personnel Act (IPA) and Fellowship program within the U.S. Department of Education
FES seeks to enhance federal agencies’ ability to guide state and local education agencies by funding the temporary assignment of skilled professionals to federal agencies that serve students experiencing homelessness, child welfare, and juvenile justice. These professionals will:
- increase federal agency capacity by delivering valuable and strategic guidance and support,
- serve as conduits between federal agencies and state- and local-level practitioners by sharing the best ideas from the field to increase the responsiveness and effectiveness of existing programs and services,
- advance opportunities to work intersectionally within and across agencies to serve populations with overlapping experiences and needs.
Supporting Research, Technical Assistance, Strategy Incubation, and Resource Development
FES seeks to advance a shared agenda at the national, regional, state, and local levels that generates high-quality research, technical assistance, strategy incubation, and resource development in support of students experiencing homelessness, child welfare, and juvenile justice. FES accomplishes this by directing funds to grantees who work to:
- strengthen organizational and field capacity to support cross-population work,
- execute intersectional strategies that increase public will among key stakeholder groups.
Pooled Fund Parameters
- Annual Fundraising Goal: $1.5-2 million
- Contribution Requirements: Learning partners must contribute a minimum of $50,000 annually. Voting governance members must contribute a minimum of $250,000 annually.
- Learning Partners are welcome to participate in FES learning sessions.
- Governance members are part of the FES steering committee, which decides which organizations to invite to submit a grant proposal. Decisions are made by consensus rather than majority vote.
- Giving Platform: JustFund
- Legal Structure: Fiscal oversight and program of the Amalgamated Foundation
- Current Funders:
- Raikes Foundation
- Stuart Foundation
- Walter S. Johnson Foundation
For more information, contact Christina Dukes.
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