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Arizona education expansion fund looks to bolster underserved schools

(Pexels photo)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Chamber Foundation’s A for Arizona project has launched what it calls a first-of-its kind statewide expansion fund.

Emily Anne Gullickson, the executive director of A for Arizona, said the campaign to aid Arizona schools contains a $1 million matching grant from the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation.

“We’re very excited about what this fund can do to sort of spark innovation and help us to move more rapidly to serving more kids in great schools now,” Gullickson said.

The chamber said the money was intended to reach students in underserved communities in Arizona.

A priority for funding will be given to applicants showing demonstrated need, including high-poverty communities.

Gullickson said every child deserves a decent education.

“We just firmly believe that no child should have to wait for a school that’s going to match their full potential,” she added.

“We’re really excited about what’s possible with the help of local partners through this expansion fund.”

Gullickson said A for Arizona hopes to attract other financial donors and supporters who share their goal of a great educational experience for Arizona children.

“We are looking to attract other local donors as well as national folk who really want to help send this message of hope to our school leaders that we really believe in what you’re doing,” Gullickson said.

Gullickson said the money should begin flowing to state schools early next year.

“We’re looking and hoping to start awarding grants in the first quarter of 2019,” Gullickson said.

The $1 million match opportunity runs through Dec. 31.

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