The Walton Family Foundation has announced an additional $100 million in funding for its Facilities Investment Fund, a private-philanthropic partnership that provides financing for the construction or renovation of public charter school facilities.
The new funding from the foundation and PNC Bank will be used to expand the capacity of high-performing public charter schools by some sixty-five hundred students and redirect more than $5 million in savings to the education needs of students and teachers. Prioritizing schools that serve traditionally underresourced communities, the fund, which is managed by Civic Builders, provides five-year, fixed-rate loans for up to 90 percent of project costs for new construction or facility renovations. The first public charter school to receive financing through the allocation, Future School of Fort Smith in Arkansas, was awarded a loan of $4 million for the purchase of its existing facility and to build an 18,400-square-foot addition that will enable it to add a ninth-grade class and increase its enrollment to four hundred students.
"Our team is on a mission to transform high school to be more responsive to kids while connecting them to the local economy," said Future School co-founders Boyd Logan and Trish Flanagan. "This loan allows us to open more doors for more students, create capacity for educational leadership within our community, and build our local economy through local talent."
"Especially during these uncertain times, we must do everything possible to direct resources to where they matter most — to student learning and success," said Walton Family Foundation K-12 program director Marc Sternberg. "Thanks to the partnership of PNC Bank, we can make this a reality for educators and students across the country."
(Photo credit: Tulsa Honor Academy/Civic Builders)