Giving Compass' Take:

• Katherine Haley, senior director of K-12 education programs for The Philanthropy Roundtable, discusses the various strategies education donors are working on to respond to COVID-19. 

• How is your charitable giving making a difference during the pandemic? Are you focusing on education issues? 

• Learn more about the long term impacts of COVID-19 on education. 

As families, educators, and community leaders wrestle with COVID-19, we’ll be trying to bring conversations to readers that will be helpful in confronting the challenge.

Katherine Haley is senior director of K-12 education programs for The Philanthropy Roundtable, a nonprofit network of 620 philanthropic organizations and individuals. Before going to the roundtable, Katherine had an extensive career on Capitol Hill, including working for the Speaker of the House. I reached out to Katherine to find out what she’s hearing from funders who are responding to the coronavirus. Here’s what she had to say.

Rick: How are funders responding to the coronavirus crisis?

Katherine: Donors have responded nimbly and have shown their commitment to meeting the needs of their communities and grantees. As state and local leaders directed schools to close their doors and students began to learn from home, our members have been doing several things: 1. Universally, they checked in with their grantees (e.g., schools and school networks, community-based and advocacy organizations, content providers, etc.) to find out their situations and specific needs. 2. Many donors converted program-specific grants to general operating funds and adjusted outcome metrics. 3. Some provided emergency grants to meet specific school or community needs (e.g., tablets, laptops, Wi-Fi hotspots, and grab-and-go meals). 4. Some donors paid out grant commitments earlier than planned, given long-term concerns about revenue or organizational sustainability. 5. Other donors have gone beyond their typical grantmaking commitments to ensure student learning continues.

Read the full article about funders responding to COVID-19 by Frederick M. Hess at Medium.