and the have pledged a total of $16 million to help New York City restructure or create new public schools, the reports.
The funding will support a competition in which teams of students, educators, and community members propose plans to create twenty traditional district schools. The XQ Institute — which was co-founded in 2015 by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs, and Russlynn H. Ali, who served as assistant secretary of education for civil rights in the Obama administration — has committed about $10 million in support of ten new and restructured high schools across the five boroughs. Launched as a project of the , the XQ Institute has awarded more than $100 million over the last four years through its , an open call to create high schools that prepare students for college, careers, and life in the twenty-first century.
New York City-based Robin Hood, which was co-founded by Wall Street executives to fight poverty in the city, will spend about $5 million to open ten new schools in low-income neighborhoods and another $1 million to train district and charter school educators. In a separate initiative, the Times reports, the organization has committed to spend about $10 million to help establish eighteen charter schools.
As part of the competition, the city will spend $16 million to create or reconfigure another twenty schools. chancellor Richard A. Carranza told the Times that schools selected for restructuring will not necessarily be the lowest-performing ones but rather "a reflection of what communities are asking for."
The effort marks a shift for Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose education agenda in his six years in office has focused on the rollout of a universal pre-K program. Indeed, while de Blasio has railed against what he considers the outsize role private funding plays in public education, the mayor is borrowing from the playbook of his predecessor, , who relied in part on private donations to open dozens of new schools. According to the Times, the de Blasio administration has struggled to attract the same level of donations to the , a private nonprofit created by Bloomberg that raises funding for New York City schools.
Carranza said he hoped the plan will usher in a new era of public-private education partnerships. "Other philanthropic organizations are going to want to be part of this," he told the Times. "There is no better place to do it than in New York City."