February 24, 2007
A $10-Million Endowment
Brown Announces Commitments to Providence Public Schools
Brown University is making a multimillion-dollar commitment to improving public education in the Providence area. Plans for a $10-million endowment, fellowships in urban education, and other measures were announced today by Brown President Ruth J. Simmons as part of the University’s response to the Slavery and Justice Report.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Brown University President Ruth J. Simmons today (Saturday, Feb. 24, 2007) announced a series of major new commitments to students in Providence public schools. These commitments are inspired in part by the report of the University’s Steering Committee on Slavery and Justice. Simmons released the University’s response to that report this morning.
The University’s new commitments to Providence Schools include:
“One of the clearest messages in the Slavery and Justice Report is that institutions of higher education must take a greater interest in the health of their local communities, especially Kindergarten through 12th-grade education,” Simmons said. “Lack of access to a good education, particularly for urban schoolchildren, is one of the most pervasive and pernicious social problems of our time. Colleges and universities are uniquely able to improve the quality of urban schools. Brown is committed to undertaking that work.”
The Slavery and Justice Report, a three-year research and public affairs project released by the University last fall, outlines in considerable detail the history of slavery and slave-trading in Rhode Island and elsewhere in New England. It found that some of the University’s early benefactors were involved in the slave trade, and that the University benefited from their involvement.
In addition to the new commitments to Providence public schools, Simmons outlined several other provisions in the University’s response:
Finally, Brown University will continue to support all its existing programs for the benefit of Providence public schools, including administrative support for the superintendent’s office, mentoring and tutoring programs, professional development for teachers, funds for equipment and other efforts.
Editors: The full text of the Slavery and Justice Report, together with the text of the University’s official response, is available from the Office of Media Relations and on the University’s Web site at www.brown.edu/slaveryjustice
Brown University has a fiber link television studio available for domestic and international live and taped interviews and maintains an ISDN line for radio interviews. For more information, call the Office of Media Relations at (401) 863-2476.