Public education foundations in Northwest Arkansas’ four largest school districts are forming a new cooperative to support regional needs.
Bentonville Public Education Foundation, Fayetteville Public Education Foundation, Rogers Public Education Foundation and Springdale Public School Education Foundation are the awarded agencies involved in a $145,000 planning grant from the Walton Family Foundation.
“As the region continues to grow at such an astonishing pace, it only makes sense that four school districts join forces to maximize resources collaboratively so that teachers in the districts can provide the innovative, pioneering public education to our students,” Fayetteville Public Education Foundation board member Marvin Caston said in a statement.
The planning period for the new cooperative started in September and will end on March 31, 2022. It will culminate with a cooperative agreement, strategic plan and an executive summary.
According to a news release, the cooperative will intensify investments in public education in Northwest Arkansas and elevate each foundation’s capacity to effect change and positively influence 60,000 to 70,000 students. The stated goals are to drive educational improvement, create change to increase opportunity, close achievement gaps, and build equity in public education.
Foundation staff and board members announced the new cooperative at an event on Nov. 9.