Developing Futures™ Districts

Developing Futures

The GE Foundation launched the Developing Futures™ in Education program to support education reform efforts in seven urban school districts: Louisville, KY; Cincinnati, OH; Stamford, CT; Erie, PA; Atlanta, GA; New York City, NY; and Milwaukee, WI. Each of these cities is home to a significant GE business. Since its onset in 2005, the Developing Futures program has invested more than $200 million in these seven school districts.

Atlanta Public Schools (APS) was awarded a GE Foundation education grant in 2007. The grant supports efforts to improve student math and science achievement; close achievement gaps; encourage students to pursue higher education; and increase collaboration between the school district and community. Support from the GE Foundation led to the creation of a remediation program for struggling students. As the district transforms, its focus has shifted to strengthening teaching and learning, implementing the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and participating in Georgia’s Race to the Top grant work. The GE Foundation is poised to help propel APS forward as it improves teacher capacity in math and science and implements the CCSS.

Grant Details

  • $22 million over five years

Key Stats

  • 51,283 students
  • 3,300 teachers
  • 103 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • African American: 78%
  • White: 13%
  • Hispanic: 6%
  • Other: 3%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 75%
  • ELL: 7–8%

The GE Foundation awarded an education grant to Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS) to improve student achievement in math and science and to develop 21st century skills for learners and leaders. The grant funded the development of professional learning communities; rigorous professional development in math and science; expansion of innovative technology to inform instruction; and in-kind human resource support to build leadership capabilities. Activities conducted under the GE Foundation grant enabled CPS to build district capacity, leading to significant positive change in student academic success. For two years in a row CPS achieved the Effective category on the Ohio Report Card, the first urban school district in Ohio to achieve this ranking. Moving forward, CPS will prepare for full CCSS implementation by creating districtwide opportunities for students and teachers to gain a greater understanding of the initiative.

Grant Details

  • $20 million over 5 years (initial grant)
  • $5.3 million over 3 years (renewal grant)

Key Stats

  • 30,756 students
  • 2,083 teachers
  • 55 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • African American: 65.4%
  • White: 25.3%
  • Multiracial: 5.4%
  • Hispanic: 2.9%
  • Asian: 0.9%
  • American Indian: 0.01%
  • Pacific Islander: 0.01%

Student Population Served

  • Economically Disadvantaged: 72.6%
  • ELL: 4.3%

The City of Erie School District received a GE Foundation education grant in 2007 and an extension grant in 2012 to create and implement seamless K–12 math and science curricula, and to provide professional-development opportunities to prepare students to be college- and career-ready. The grant also supports broadening the awareness of CCSS and aligning current district math, science and literacy curricula to the new standards. The support of the GE Foundation is instrumental in helping the district build a strong educational foundation to create a more competitive local workforce. The City of Erie School District will focus future efforts on implementing CCSS, improving academic achievement at the secondary school level, and providing leadership opportunities to build district capacity.

Grant Details

  • $15 million over 5 years (initial grant)
  • $8.6 million over 3 years (renewal grant)

Key Stats

  • 12,301 students
  • 869 teachers
  • 18 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • White: 44.9%
  • African American: 32.8%
  • Hispanic: 12.2%
  • Asian: 5.6%
  • Multiracial: 4.2%
  • Hawaiian/Pacific: 0.08%
  • American Indian/Alaskan: .03%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 78%
  • ELL: 9%

Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) in Louisville, Ky., became a GE Foundation Developing Futures grantee in 2005 and was awarded an extension grant in 2010. The initial grant provided JCPS an opportunity to implement inquiry-based, student-centered core curricula in both math and science. JCPS is currently using its extension grant to improve math and science instruction through CCSS, build capacity at the school-level through school-based staff developers, support professional learning communities, and engage parents. With the support of the GE Foundation, JCPS has also provided targeted professional development and resources to teachers and administrators to further understanding of the CCSS; of Highly Effective Teaching and Learning (HETL); and Assessment Literacy. Moving forward, JCPS will work to ensure that teaching and learning are equitable and rigorously grounded in CCSS, and will conduct needs assessments to better target professional development.

Grant Details

  • $25 million over 5 years (initial grant)
  • $10.5 million over 3 years (renewal grant)

Key Stats

  • 101,200 students
  • 6,400 teachers
  • 155 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • White: 50.8%
  • African American: 36.3%
  • Hispanic: 5.4%
  • Other: 4.3%
  • Asian: 2.8%
  • American Indian: 0.1%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 62.8%
  • ELL: 5.7%

Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) has been a GE Foundation Developing Futures grantee since 2011. The grant supports MPS initiatives to improve academic achievement and better prepare students for college and career opportunities. Since its inception, MPS has organized math and science cohorts among its teachers to align instruction to CCSS. All teachers and principals have received professional development regarding the CCSS and the district’s literacy, math and science plans. CCSS-aligned math and science curricula guides for all grades have been developed and deployed in the district. Math and literacy teacher leaders are also involved in training to strengthen their leadership skills and to improve their classroom instruction.

Grant Details

  • $20.4 million over 5 years

Key Stats

  • 78,461 students
  • 5,410 teachers
  • 166 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • African American: 55.8%
  • Hispanic: 24.0%
  • White: 13.9%
  • Asian: 5.5%
  • Native American: 0.8%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 78%
  • ELL: 9%

The GE Foundation awarded the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) a five-year, $20.3 million grant and a $14.3 million renewal grant to support systemwide adoption of the CCSS. In this effort, New York City serves as a laboratory site for the GE Foundation districts, and its work, expertise and best practices are being leveraged and applied across all cities. With the support of the GE Foundation, NYCDOE is developing robust resources to help teachers implement the CCSS in their schools and is building capacity at the central, field and school levels to shift instruction. Additionally, it focuses on changing teacher practices to strengthen student work, ultimately impacting the outcomes for 1.1 million students citywide. The findings from the New York City CCSS laboratory site will help drive GE Foundation’s work on a national scale.  

Grant Details

  • $20.3 million over 5 years (initial grant)
  • $14.3 million over 3 years (renewal grant)

Key Stats

  • 1,041,437 students
  • 89,848 teachers
  • 1,509 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • Hispanic: 41.8%
  • African American: 33.3%
  • White: 12.3%
  • Asian: 11.6%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 69.4%
  • ELL: 14.3%

The Stamford Public School District (SPS), the fifth largest in Connecticut, received a GE Foundation grant to improve student achievement in math and science, close achievement gaps, and ensure that all students have access to a standards-based curriculum aligned to the CCSS. The district has used the grant to implement a rigorous, systemwide math and science curriculum based on a model refined with the help of various educational experts. Teachers and administrators are participating in professional-development activities, enhancing their technology skills and collaborating with other educators. As a result of the GE Foundation’s support, SPS has seen significant gains in student math and science scores and has cut the achievement gap in math almost in half. Moving forward, SPS will begin to align its curriculum to the CCSS, and will implement this aligned curriculum over the next several years. 

Grant Details

  • $15.3 million over 5 years (initial grant)
  • $10.3 million over 4 years (renewal grant)

Key Stats

  • 1,413 teachers
  • 15,922 students
  • 20 schools

Ethnicities Served

  • Hispanic: 35.8%
  • White: 35%
  • African American: 20.3%
  • Asian: 8.8%

Student Population Served

  • Free and Reduced Lunch: 48%
  • ELL: 13%