Posted on September 5, 2006
Interim Executive Director
30 West 26th Street, 5th floor
NPO Spotlight - PENCIL
To galvanize and coordinate meaningful civic involvement in New York City public education to improve student achievement.
About the Organization:
PENCIL (Public Education Needs Civic Involvement in Learning) was launched in New York City by then schools chancellor Ramon Cortines to expand the year-old Principal For A Day (PFAD) program and encourage private sector involvement in the city's public schools. Since its inception, PENCIL has orchestrated more than ten thousand PFAD visits; fostered hundreds of long-term partnerships with schools, generating millions of dollars worth of donations of cash, goods, and services for schools and districts; and provided the private sector a vehicle through which to advocate for educational reform.
Principal For A Day, PENCIL's flagship partnership program, enables New York business leaders to spend one day each fall experiencing firsthand the accomplishments of and challenges facing the city's public schools. Throughout the rest of the school year, the participants partner with their principals and schools to devise ways to enhance learning environments and student achievement. PFAD programs outside New York currently exist in schools in sixteen states, Australia, and New Zealand. Other PENCIL initiatives support PFAD and include workshops and training, donation programs to streamline the process through which business partners can contribute funds or supplies to their schools, and the Business Leader For A Day program, in which the business leaders invite their principal partners to their workplaces to share insights about leadership and management and to continue their collaborations.
The PENCIL Web site contains information about participation in the PFAD program for business leaders and schools, case studies of successful collaborations that effectively addressed specific school needs, and details about summer student internships with partnering companies, and Seinfeld scholarships for New York City public school graduates.
PENCIL is supported primarily by grants from corporations and corporate foundations.