Honoring a commitment to people who have pledged to see the new documentary Waiting for "Superman," about the crises facing the nation's public schools, the NewSchools Venture Fund has announced a $5 million investment in innovative education organizations nationwide working to close achievement gaps in low-income communities.
Recipients of the funding, part of a commitment by San Francisco-based NewSchools to provide additional support for education reform efforts after 150,000 people pledged to see the recently-released documentary, will be announced in the coming months. Directed by An Inconvenient Truth filmmaker Davis Guggenheim, the documentary features a number of schools operated by organizations in the NewSchools investment portfolio. The pledge goal was reached on October 8.
Founded in 1998, NewSchools provides funding and management guidance to entrepreneurial organizations working to improve public education for low-income children. NewSchools' investments include organizations that recruit and train teachers, start public charter schools, work to turn around failing schools, and create technology tools for the classroom.
"Waiting for 'Superman' shines a bright light on two important truths," said NewSchools Venture Fund CEO Ted Mitchell. "Excellent schools with outstanding teachers make all the difference in a child's life. But in some places in this country, access to an excellent school is a matter of chance. It's not fair, and we all need to step up to change the odds. NewSchools and its entrepreneurs are demonstrating every day that it can be done."