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Removing Barriers: Education in Vermont


Embracing the Power of Education

Education in our country is a multi-billion dollar enterprise. Because charitable giving for education is an important but small percentage of overall education funding, the member organization Grantmakers for Education (GFE) works to find the best roles for philanthropy in education. GFE and its members constantly calibrate and recalibrate philanthropic levers to ask: where can charitable dollars make the best impact?

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Forging Links

Fall means “back to school” in Vermont. It’s a time of progress and collaboration on many fronts. One event that you may not be aware of is the annual Vermont Education Summit that convenes educators, administrators, business leaders, nonprofits, and individual philanthropists to share ideas on how best to improve access to postsecondary and career education in the state.

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From Ribbon-Cuttings and Ship-Launching to Online Resources

With little doubt, we all desire to help Vermont students reach their full potential and we hope to develop the best possible workforce for our state. And, if we share ideas and support each other, I believe that we — educators, parents, businesspeople, elected and appointed officials, volunteers and philanthropists, alike — can make this a reality.

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The promise of working in rural settings

Foundations working to improve education in the United States focus primarily on urban issues: from the groundbreaking work of Geoffrey Canada in New York to the model West Oakland Education Innovation Zone out west. Some of the best work in improving education and educational opportunities has taken place in high density areas. The McClure Foundation’s work is unique in that it focuses on removing barriers to education in our rural state.

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Giving with "Warm Hands"

One of the leading families in the Community Foundation’s history—and indeed in Vermont's philanthropic history—is that of J. Warren and Lois McClure. One of the signature themes of this, our 25th anniversary year, is the idea that giving is best done while one is alive, with "warm hands." For Lois and her late husband, Mac, giving with warm hands allowed them to experience the joy of helping others and gave their children an opportunity to observe their philanthropic work.

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