Greater Texas Foundation determined its current funding principles by assessing the possible impact of its internal resources, expertise, values, interest, and priorities; against our state’s needs and the opportunity for impact on the education landscape in Texas. Through research and observation, the foundation became aware of a trend: Along the pathway from beginning high school through completion of post-secondary, the largest numbers of students are lost between post-secondary enrollment and completion. In fact, only 1 in 5 Texas youth who enter high school complete a post-secondary degree or credential. Therefore, by supporting successful student transitions from K-12 to post-secondary education and facilitating the progression from post-secondary enrollment to completion, GTF will impact more students and work toward closing the education gap in Texas. This is why the foundation’s primary focus is related to post-secondary education access, preparation, persistence and completion.
Within the context of the above, the foundation is interested in funding projects which fall into one or more of the following funding areas:
Post-Secondary Education (Preparation, Access, Persistence and Success): The goal of GTF’s investments in this area is to increase rates of post-secondary enrollment and completion for all Texas students, with a particular focus on students who may encounter barriers to post-secondary success. To close the gaps in post-secondary completion, Texas students need help successfully transitioning from high school to post-secondary institutions and support to persist and complete a credential or degree once enrolled in post-secondary education. We will focus on the following:
Post-Secondary Transition and Completion: GTF will invest in activities which help facilitate successful transition to post-secondary education, focusing on student planning and preparation, improved developmental education programs and better alignment of education systems. GTF is also focused on increasing the rate of post-secondary completion through investments in support for students and system reform.
Post-Secondary Access: GTF will increase post-secondary enrollment through investments in increasing access to and support for post-secondary application and financial aid processes and improving post-secondary affordability.
Math and Science in Support of Post-Secondary Readiness: The goal of GTF’s investment in math and science education is to improve academic outcomes and increase post-secondary readiness in math and science education by emphasizing completion of Algebra II. Algebra II is shown to be a strong predictor of post-secondary readiness and success. The foundation’s hypothesis is that high-quality math and science is essential to success both within the educational system and in the working world. For students to be fully prepared for post-secondary education, they need qualified teachers and access to rigorous curricula. We will focus on the following as they relate to completion of Algebra II:
Student Support: The foundation will increase the number of students who graduate high school prepared to enter and succeed in post-secondary education through investments in guidance, support and rigorous programs focused on math and science.
Teacher Preparation and Teacher Professional Development: The foundation will work to increase the number of students who graduate high school prepared to enter and succeed in post-secondary education through investments in better preparing and supporting those students’ math and science teachers.