How Packard Supports Wiser Sex Ed

Studies have shown that kids that receive comprehensive sex ed are more likely to put off having sex until they're older. One such comprehensive program is the Working to Institutionalize Sex Education Initiative, or WISE.

The Packard Foundation has supported WISE through grants to the Grove Foundation since 2009. With assets of over $110 million, Grove awards around $10 million in grants per year, focusing on organizations in California, New Jersey and New York. The foundation was established by Andrew Grove, former CEO and President of Intel. He currently serves as a Senior Advisor at Intel and is the author of many books including High Output Management, Only the Paranoid Survive, and Swimming Across: A Memoir.

Grove, a survivor of the Nazi occupation who fled communist Hungary as a child came to the US in 1956, was also Gordon Moore’s first hire at Fairchild Semiconductor. Gordon Moore and Robert Noyce would leave Fairchild to establish Intel. Andrew Grove simply followed them, joking that “I never got an offer (to come with Moore and Noyce), or I should say, I never got an invitation.” The rest, as they say, is history.

Andrew Grove established the Grove Foundation in 1986, awarding grants toward civil liberties, human rights, healthcare, homelessness, Jewish causes, and reproductive health and family planning. The WISE initiative was actually established by the Grove, Hewlett and Packard foundations.

The initiative is currently in its second phase and is being helped along by a recent $750,000 grant from the Packard Foundation, bringing its total support to the Grove Foundation’s sex ed work to over $2 million—$1.5 million of which went toward the WISE initiative. The Ford Foundation has also lent its support to the Grove Foundation and WISE with $800,000 in grants in recent years. 

The WISE initiative’s overarching principles are to:

  • Institutionalize comprehensive sexual education (CSE) in schools
  • Improve sex ed policies
  • Engage and implement CSE in school districts around the nation

The initiative also aims to leverage its partnerships to simplify the process of implementing CSE programs. The LFA Group is conducting evaluations of the WISE Initiative in order to determine best practices and efficacy. The evaluations will also be used to inform states and school districts interested in pursuing CSE programs.