Annual Study Announces Top 50 K-12 Education Foundations in the Nation, Polk Education Foundation Ranked #21
The nation’s only annual study and ranking of K-12 education foundations was released today, showing the large impact that local communities led by business leaders make on public education. The study — in its fourth year — is conducted by the nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank The Caruthers Institute (formerly dewey & associates). To view the 2017 study, visit www.caruthers.insitute
“The industry continues to grow, with the study’s more than 200 foundations holding more than one-half billion in assets and raising almost $400 million,” said Dewey Caruthers, study author and president of The Caruthers Institute that conducts the study, noting “top-performing K-12 education foundations are most often led by the top local business, community and education leaders. View the Nation's Top 25 below.
“Stepping Up: The Nation’s Top K-12 Education Foundations 2016” showed Six states – Florida, Texas, Utah, California, Tennessee, Nebraska – have been the most represented with education foundations in the nation’s top 50 for two consecutive years. More specifically for 2017: Florida had 9 foundations in the top 50, with 6 in the top 25. Texas followed with 8 in the top 50, with 2 in the top 25. Utah had 5 in the top 50, with 1 in the top 25. California had 4 in top 50, and 3 in top 25. Tennessee had 2 in top 50, with one in top 25. Nebraska had 2 in the top 50 and both are also in the top 25.
The Nation's Top 25:
1. Pinellas Education Foundation (FL)
2. Alliance for Education (WA)
3. Irvine Public Schools Foundation (CA)
4. Achieve Minneapolis (MN)
5. Chattanooga Hamilton County Public Education Fund (TN)
6. Boise Public Schools Foundation (ID)
7. Foundation for Lincoln Public Schools (NE)
8. Omaha Schools Foundation (NE)
9. DC Public Education Fund (DC)
10. Denver Public Schools Foundation (CO)
11. Barbers Hill Education Foundation (TX)
12. Foundation for Seminole County Public Schools (FL)
13. Clark County Public Education Foundation (NV)
14. Hillsborough Education Foundation (FL)
15. Granite Education Foundation (UT)
16. Oakland Public Education Fund (CA)
17. Silicon Valley Education Foundation (CA)
18. Albuquerque Public Schools Foundation (NM)
19. Foundation for Springfield Public Schools (MO)
20. Brevard Schools Foundation (FL)
21. Polk Education Foundation and Business Partnership (FL)
22. Public Education Foundation of Marion County (FL)
23. Frisco Education Foundation (TX)
24. The Fund for Public Schools (NY)
25. The Boston Educational Development Foundation (MA)
The study focuses on K-12 education foundations in the 200 largest school districts (by student population). Additionally, top-performing education foundations that serve smaller school districts were included. In totality, there were 191 K-12 education foundations from 219 school districts included in the study. These foundations collectively generated the following in 2015 (most recent year data available taken from IRS Form 990):
Foundations also are placed into four divisions based on revenues. “We want to provide comparisons to foundations of similar sizes,” Caruthers said. Division 1 includes foundations with $2 million or more in revenue; Division 2 includes foundations with revenue of $1 million to $1,999,999; Division 3 includes foundations with $500,000 to $999,999 in revenues; and division 4 includes foundations with less than $500,000 in revenue.
This was the fourth year of this study and the Polk Education Foundation (PEF), a direct support organization of the Polk County school district, has ranked in the top 50 each year. In 2014 the PEF was ranked 17, in 2015 - 39, 2016 - 41 and in 2017 had a significant jump back to the top 25 ranking number 17 when compared to like size education foundations.
The PEF’s Executive Director Susan Copeland said “ We are very proud of the work we do at the education foundation, so no matter what we are ranked we get great satisfaction from our work supporting students and teachers, but to be recognized in a study like this is a wonderful feeling, especially this year with the significant jump in ranking. We are a small hardworking staff of 7, but we are mighty and have a wonderful giving community that supports our work and a board that leads us well.”
About Caruthers Institute
Caruthers Institute (CI) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank that conducts research, crafts solutions and leads advocacy on emerging children’s issues. CI has national expertise on the issues of K-12 education foundations, arrests for common youth misbehavior, and child obesity. CI is formerly dewey & associates. For more info, visit www.caruthers.institute
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