Teach For America, an educational group that helps put people into teaching jobs just found out it will be getting $100 million to start its first-ever endowment in the hopes of having their grass-roots organization become a permanent fixture in education. The money is coming from four philanthropists who are joining the organization in order to create a reliable and long lasting source of money
The program is operating in areas from Atlanta to rural New Mexico to Los Angeles. This year they had more than 46,000 applications for just 4,400 teaching jobs.
Founder Wendy Kopp says that were making it a priority to make sure that Teach For America becomes an enduring American institution that can thrive and grow as long as the problem we’re working to address remains. Kopp came up with the idea for Teach For America for her undergraduate thesis and started it in 1990.
The endowment started with philanthropist Eli Broad, who pledged $25 million from his Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation and encouraged others to also contribute to the program. Three more foundations matched the funds: the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, the Robertson Foundation and philanthropists Steve and Sue Mandel.
At first the endowment will produce about 2 percent of Teach For America’s $200 million budget, but Kopp expects it to get bigger as time goes on. The organization gets all its money from nonprofits, corporations and federal grants.
Kopp said she hopes that this new steady source of income means the organization can double the number of active corps members serving two-year terms to 15,000 and increase the communities they reach from 39 to 60.