Fund will address urgent needs of students in all Seattle Public
Schools, with resources targeted to schools with the greatest needs
SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 15, 2018--
Amazon (Nasdaq:AMZN) today announced a $2 million grant to the Alliance
for Education to create the “Right Now Needs Fund” to help meet the
urgent and basic needs of students attending Seattle Public Schools.
This money is meant to be flexible and could be used to purchase a
needed raincoat or school supplies, or to provide food in backpacks to
feed students over a long weekend.
“At least a third of the students in Seattle Public Schools are impacted
by poverty, and they are present in all of our 103 schools. The
opportunity gap facing children from low income families has been a
persistent problem in our community, and it is widening,” said Lisa
Chick, President and CEO at the Alliance for Education. “We are grateful
for Amazon’s generosity and understanding that to be successful in
education we need to support the basic needs of children. These funds
will help us directly address closing the opportunity gap in Seattle.”
“We work hard at Aki Kurose to make sure all our kids have what they
need to be ready to learn, but the need is far greater than the
resources we have available,” said Dr. Mia Williams, Principal at Aki
Kurose Middle School. “This fund puts an incredible tool in our hands to
solve problems and set my students up for success. I couldn’t be more
excited about what this means to my community.”
Low-income students, including students experiencing homelessness, are
concentrated in Seattle’s 31 “Title 1” schools. However, 18,300 children
receive free and reduced lunch across all Seattle Public Schools.
Students whose basic needs are not met often struggle to learn.
“The Alliance for Education has a track record of administering
on-the-ground programs that effectively support success for students and
teachers,” said David Zapolsky, Amazon SVP & General Counsel and
Alliance for Education board member. “We worked hard with the Alliance
to create a flexible source of funding so each school can quickly decide
how to best serve their students.”
The Right Now Needs Fund will help principals, teachers, and parents
collaborate to remove students’ most basic barriers to learning in all
Seattle Public Schools during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 school years.
Spread over the next two years, Amazon will grant $2 million to the
Alliance for Education to serve as the administrator of the funds for
all Seattle Public Schools. The Alliance will disburse the funds to
schools according to student needs, and higher poverty schools will
receive more support. The only stipulation of the fund is that it must
directly benefit students and not replace currently budgeted items.
“I’m inspired by this city’s strong commitment to public education –
everyone wants our students to succeed. I have also been troubled by the
significant challenges many of our students face in their daily lives,”
said Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Denise Juneau. “The Amazon
contribution is designed to address those challenges by supporting
students’ basic needs and removing barriers to learning. This generous
and meaningful support, with the Alliance for Education’s stewardship,
will help make sure students can focus on their education. We are so
appreciative of this gift to our student community.”
Both the Alliance for Education and Amazon are committed to education
and addressing urgent needs that prevent students from learning. The Alliance
for Education is Seattle’s local education fund, and works in close
partnership with Seattle Public Schools and other education stakeholders
to create programs and raise funds designed to close opportunity gaps in
Seattle’s public school system. Amazon supports STEM and computer
science education and programs that address childhood hunger and family
homelessness. Amazon is a proud donor to the Families Yes campaign in
support of the Families, Education, Preschool, and Promise Levy on the
ballot November 6.
“These resources will complement existing school funding and help to
close the opportunity gap,” said former Seattle Mayor Norman Rice.
“There’s nothing more important than making sure our students are safe,
healthy and ready to learn – I’m delighted that Amazon is making this
investment in the future.”
Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than
competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational
excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping,
personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle
Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, and Alexa
are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon. For more
information, visit amazon.com/about
and follow @AmazonNews.
View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20181015005342/en/
Source: Amazon.com, Inc.