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Policy Post: It’s not just a government thing

September 30, 2010

Court’s Kids will periodically provide some background information on special education policy from the federal level down to individual school programs.

These Policy Posts have often discussed what government’s role is in special education. It’s no coincidence because  over 30 years ago our leaders made the commitment to provide an environment for children with special needs to thrive in. It’s disappointing to still talk about a unfunded mandate that has remained even with stimulus dollars these past two  years. Generations have been given an promise that wasn’t kept but complaining only takes you so far. We can’t let more generations grow up without the tools they need because we keep looking in one direction. Court’s Kids is part of a wider effort to leverage the resources of the private sector towards this end.

We want to recognize two very generous efforts that show what the private sector can do to help.

Target not only doubled its donations to education to more than $1 billion, it launched a social media effort to drive commitments to read to children. See what time you have and take the pledge, it will even appear on your Facebook wall.

Speaking of Facebook, the much talked about founder Mark Zuckerberg,  donated $100 million to Newark Public Schools in New Jersey. Similar to Target, it didn’t just stop with this single, very large donation. The mayor of Newark, being a politician who knows how to fundraise, has been able to garner $40 million so far in an effort to match it.

These are two private actions that helped to inspire others. This is what Court’s Kids is all about. We don’t want to just provide boxes of books and supplies.  We want to perfect our model of bringing book distributors and special education programs together and export it to communities across the country. Maybe one day, we can help provide the kind of help these two efforts have.

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