Salesforce Invests in Bay Area School Districts, Nonprofits

The company is giving $18.2 million in grants to the San Francisco and Oakland school districts and two nonprofits to improve student outcomes and opportunities.

Salesforce is working with the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) and Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) to support programs focused on computer science and math.  The company is also giving CORE and the Blueprint Schools Network $500,000 each to extend the reach of their programs to support students, teachers and principals.

SFUSD will receive $8.5 million to support the next generation of learners to succeed in high school and college. The grant will cover professional development for computer science teachers in an effort to make computer science classes available to all students in San Francisco's elementary, middle and high schools.

Other components of the SFUSD partnership include:

  • Providing $100,000 per school of unrestricted funds directly to all 21 K-8 middle school principals through the Principal's Innovation Fund to use for school priorities.
  • Supporting African American students entering high school and in high school by funding SFUSD's Black Star Rising Academy.
  • Beginning college preparation for first-generation college students as early as middle school by supporting SFUSD's Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) course.
  • Recruiting and training teachers in hard to hire subject areas like science and math.
  • Support SFUSD's Middle Grades Redesign Initiative, which is rethinking education for sixth, seventh and eighth grade students.

A $8.7 grant from Salesforce to OUSD will focus on the retention and development of middle school teachers. OUSD will also use the funding to continue its efforts to serve newcomer students including those who are unaccompanied immigrant youth, refugees and asylum seekers.

The partnership with OUSD will also include:

  • Support the creation of a new mentoring program for principals.
  • Provide professional development opportunities to enhance teacher leadership skills.
  • Address Oakland's critical teacher shortage by providing pathways for non-teaching staff to obtain permanent teaching credentials.
  • Support Newcomer Navigators, a program designed to support students who are new to the U.S. through counseling, group therapy, and case management to address their unique housing, food, legal and medical needs.
  • Hire new coaches for the district's math teachers and provide Blueprint Schools Network's high dosage math tutoring program to students who are furthest behind.
  • Provide summer training and professional development for all newly-hired computer science teachers.
  • Develop credentialing that would allow interested teachers to earn a computer science supplemental credential by 2020.

In addition to Salesforce's financial investments to support schools and nonprofits, Salesforce employees have pledged to volunteer 100,000 hours to support the company's education initiatives for this school year.

About the Author

Sara Friedman is a reporter/producer for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe covering education policy and a wide range of other public-sector IT topics.

Friedman is a graduate of Ithaca College, where she studied journalism, politics and international communications.

Friedman can be contacted at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @SaraEFriedman.

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