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Salesforce Announces $18.2 Million in Grants to San Francisco and Oakland School Districts, Education Nonprofits

Salesforce’s global education investment now totals more than $90 million

$17.2 million to support computer science, math programs, teacher training and newcomer support for San Francisco Unified School District and Oakland Unified School District

$1 million in grants to CORE Districts and Blueprint Schools Network will be applied to improving student outcomes and increasing math achievement

Salesforce employees pledge 100,000 volunteer hours in education throughout the 2019-2020 school year

San Francisco – September 12, 2019 – Salesforce [NYSE: CRM], the global leader in CRM, today announced $18.2 million in grants to the San Francisco and Oakland school districts and education nonprofits to expand educational opportunities for students and leaders in the Bay Area. The grants include $8.5 million to San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), $8.7 million to Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), and $500,000 each to nonprofits CORE and Blueprint Schools Network for continued education support.

Comments on the News:

  • "Giving every child an equal opportunity to a world-class education is a critical step to bringing more equality, stability, and growth into our communities, and it cannot be the work of government alone," said Salesforce co-CEOs Marc Benioff and Keith Block. "Everyone has a role to play—including business—and that’s why Salesforce has provided nearly $70 million in funding and 45,000 volunteer hours in the San Francisco and Oakland school districts.”
  • “Every student in San Francisco deserves a quality education and the opportunity to learn the skills they need to succeed,” said San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed. “Thanks to this generous grant from Salesforce, the San Francisco Unified School District will be able to provide even more computer science and math programs that will help students thrive in higher-education and in the workforce.”
  • “This generous donation to support the education of Oakland’s children is tech done right,” said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. “We deeply appreciate the long-term investment Salesforce has made to OUSD, specifically in the areas of computer science, math, and science. Our schools, our teachers, and our entire community benefit from such a rich investment.”
  • "Because of Salesforce SFUSD has been able to go much further faster in transforming our schools to reflect 21st century learning," said SFUSD Superintendent Dr. Vincent Matthews. "With Salesforce funding we have created the nation’s first pre K – 12 computer science program and the number of students studying CS in SFUSD has grown from 700 to over 25,000. And, with their investments in middle school, more students than ever now have access to the kind of educational opportunities that prepare them for life and careers."
  • "The commitment from Salesforce to the students of Oakland Unified is incomparable," said OUSD Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell. "Our students’ ability to grow as scholars and prepare for careers in the 21st century is made infinitely easier by Salesforce. Whether it’s supporting our students in learning computer science or math, protecting the health and safety of students, or helping our newcomer students transition more easily in their adopted home, we thank Salesforce for making a profound and long lasting difference in the lives and futures of the young people of Oakland."

A Legacy of Partnership Continues

Salesforce’s latest grants to SFUSD and OUSD build upon a long-term partnership with the districts to improve student outcomes and opportunities. The new grants will support computer science curriculum expansion and innovative math programs as well as teacher recruitment, retention, and training in both districts.

As a result of these partnerships, both districts now have robust computer science programs that serve K-8 students, designed to lay the foundation for future computer science classes in high school. Since the beginning of the partnerships, more than 38,000 SFUSD and OUSD students have taken computer science courses.

Salesforce employees have volunteered more than 45,000 hours in SFUSD and OUSD, and have pledged to volunteer 100,000 hours this school year.

Wraparound Support for SFUSD Students

Over the past seven years of partnership with SFUSD, Salesforce’s investment has included providing technology in classrooms, supporting innovative math and science curriculum and attracting and retaining teachers in hard to hire subject areas. This new grant of $8.5 million to SFUSD will be used to:

  • Deliver $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
  • Provide professional development for computer science teachers and ensure computer science classes are available to students in San Francisco’s elementary, middle, and high schools
  • Develop a new science curriculum aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards
  • Support African American students entering high school and in high school by funding SFUSD’s Black Star Rising Academy
  • Begin college preparation for first-generation college students as early as middle school by supporting SFUSD’s Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) course
  • Recruit and train teachers in hard to hire subject areas like science and math
  • Support SFUSD’s Middle Grades Redesign Initiative, which is rethinking education for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students

As a result of Salesforce’s partnership with SFUSD, more than 34,000 students have taken a substantial course in computer science (CS). Today, CS is offered in every grade in SFUSD, from PreK through 12th grade, which made SFUSD the first district in the country with such a comprehensive CS program. In addition, following a multi-pronged approach to improve math outcomes, the district saw a 50 percent reduction in algebra class repeaters across all middle grades.

A Focus on Educators in OUSD

Salesforce’s partnership with OUSD will continue to support math and computer science education and support the district’s effort to serve all of its students’ unique needs for newcomers— unaccompanied immigrant youth, refugees and asylum seekers—who enter Oakland public schools each year. The new investment includes a new focus on improving retention and development for middle school teachers. It will also support a new Principal Summit to bring together Oakland middle school principals for a day of professional development and collaboration. This new grant of $8.7 million to OUSD will be used to:

  • 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

As a result of the Salesforce grants, more than 50 percent of the newcomers in the district received direct support from Newcomer Navigators and chronic absenteeism rates fell by 16 percent. Additionally, the district saw a 23 percent decrease in the number of Blueprint Schools Network students who were 3 or more years below their grade level in math.

New Grants for Education Nonprofits

In addition to supporting SFUSD and OUSD, Salesforce is providing grants to education nonprofits to expand its support of district educators and students. Salesforce will be donating $500,000 to CORE, a collaboration of several California urban districts with a shared data system to provide opportunities for teachers and principals to improve student outcomes. Salesforce is also making a $500,000 grant to Blueprint Schools Network, to expand the implementation of its Math Fellows Program, an intensive, daily, in-school tutoring program that provides additional academic support for students.

Circle the Schools

Through Salesforce’s Circle the Schools program, employees participate in volunteer activities designed to advance student skills including literacy in elementary schools, STEM in middle schools, and college and career readiness in high schools. Since 2013, Salesforce employees have adopted more than 100 schools globally, and 34 schools in San Francisco and Oakland.

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