Schusterman Family Foundation: Grants for K-12 Education

OVERVIEW: The Oklahoma-based Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation funds organizations that serve the Jewish community and Israel, national education and local initiatives for Tulsa, Oklahoma and Jerusalem, Israel. Its national education initiative directs funds toward teacher preparation and professional development, instructional materials and research and advocacy for broad educational reform including the development of public charter schools.

IP TAKE: This funder posts funding opportunities are RFPs on its website but does not accept unsolicited proposals.

PROFILE: The Schusterman Family Foundation was established in 1987 by the late Charles Schusterman, a Russian-born American businessman who invested in oil and gas, and his wife, Lynn. The foundation is headquartered in Tulsa, Oklahoma and aims to “protect children, support students, inspire volunteers, launch entrepreneurs and shape leaders.” Its three main funding initiatives are the Jewish community and Israel, national education and local initiatives for communities in Tulsa, Oklahoma and Jerusalem, Israel.  

The foundation’s education program aims “to provide teachers and school leaders with high quality training, outstanding instructional resources and more effective preparation” through four separate funding lines: teacher preparation, professional learning, instructional materials  and “beyond teaching.” The teacher preparation and professional learning initiatives both aim to increase the quality of instruction through innovative teacher education and professional development programs; coaching, mentoring and leadership development and the recruitment, preparation and graduation of teachers of color. In this vein, the foundation has supported Urban Teachers, a national organization that fosters teaching skills that effect empowerment, equity and inclusivity in urban classrooms. Another grantee, the Achievement Network, helps schools align instruction with common core standards by implementing data-driven instruction and assessments. In the area of instructional materials, the foundation invests in the development and distribution of high-quality, researched-based curricular materials, including those that support English language learners and students performing below grade level. One grantee, Odell Education, has developed a rigorous literacy curriculum that also fosters creativity and critical thinking in students. Schusterman’s “beyond teaching” initiative examines school reform broadly. Grantees include charter school networks and educational policy and advocacy groups including the Charter School Growth Fund, Conservative Leaders for Education and the KIPP Foundation.  

The Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation’s education grants are directed mainly toward nonprofit organizations operating on the national level in the United States. A complete list of grantees is available at the foundation’s website.

This foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals, but posts information about specific grants and RFPs on its opportunities page.

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