Education, Executive, Finance - Bezos To Fund Pre-Schools
Amazon founder and the current richest man in the world Jeff Bezos plans to commit US$2 Billion to a new network for nonprofit preschools that are to be built in America's low-income communities and accept students at no charge.
Bezos is worth more than $160 Billion because of Amazon's dominance of e-commerce and cloud computing. He devotes much of his fortune to his Blue Origin rocket company, which he describes as an "investment in the future of our planet through the development of foundational space infrastructure". He took his first steps into philanthropy with donations to cancer research and scholarships for immigrants, among other causes.
His new charity effort is called the Bezos Day One Fund; within that will be the Day 1 Families Fund, and the Day 1 Academies Fund. The former will support existing non-profit organizations that offer shelter and food to young homeless families. The latter will create a new network of full-scholarship "high-quality" Montessori-inspired pre-schools for low-income communities where, Bezos said, "The child will be the customer."
Bezos agrees with educators and says that it is "really really hard" for a child to catch up if they fall behind in their early years. Closing the gap by funding better schools will, he says, "gigantic dividends for decades".