CLOSING UP SHOP: On November 18, the Pearson Foundation announced that it will be closing its doors at the end of 2014 due to a halt of funding from Pearson.
Founded in 2003, the Pearson Charitable Foundation contributed over $130 million to learning programs globally. The Foundation focused on literacy projects, as a founding partner of Jumpstart’s Read for the Record and by giving over three million books to local communities through the We Give Books program, which the Foundation formally gave to nonprofit First Book in October. See more of its initiatives here.
Pearson has undergone a fair amount of controversy for blurring the line between the for-profit company and the nonprofit foundation. In 2013, the Pearson Charitable Foundation agreed to pay $7.7 million to New York State after accusations that it had developed Common Core-focused courses and content for the corporation and had flown school officials who had contracts with Pearson to conferences in Rio de Janiero and Singapore. “We recognize there were times when the governance of the foundation and its relationship with Pearson could have been clearer and more transparent,” Pearson issued in a statement.
According to the press release, Pearson’s charitable giving will now be administered directly from the corporation, in order “to support and increase its efforts to maximise social impact.” Pearson has pledged to continue investing at least 1% of its profits into local community initiatives.