Blackstone CEO school donation
Blackstone Group CEO Steve Schwarzman this week donated $25 million to the public high school from which he graduated in 1965. It’s believed to be the largest-ever gift of its kind, and Schwarzman hopes it will encourage other public schools to fundraise from their alumni.
- More than 90% of America’s 56 million K-12 students attend public schools, and 3.3 million of them are expected to graduate this year from high school. Almost none are ever asked for donations, despite clear needs to improve academic proficiency and an increased reliance on student fees to fund extracurricular activities.
- Most U.S. public schools don’t have any bureaucratic infrastructure in place to raise money, in contrast to dedicated alumni giving and endowment functions at private schools and post-secondary schools. Some of this is related to state and federal regulations, but more is just the inertia of having never done it.
- There also is some philosophical pushback, including concerns that public school fundraising would exacerbate inequality.
- Go deeper at Axios: The giant pot of money public schools don’t touch