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Our Approach

Longfield Family Foundation is part of a new focus in foundation giving. This fresh approach involves more than just writing a check. We understand that our partners can benefit from more than just our financial support, and so we also provide:

  • Hands-on project implementation
  • Resources, including strategic community relationships
  • Specialized knowledge of local education and education reform initiatives

Our aim is to support schools that relentlessly strive to help all children succeed. In the words of William Julius Wilson, “Our overriding goal ought to be to save the children. Other goals…are all worthy. But they should be secondary to the goal of improving the life prospects of the next generation.”

We are solely interested in outcomes-based projects that improve student learning and achievement. We constantly evaluate our work to ensure we are doing all that we can. Without assessment, we will never know if we are accomplishing our undertaking.

Founded in 2007 by technology entrepreneur Chuck Longfield and his wife Susie, with the goal of giving back to the public school system in which Chuck was a student and teacher, the foundation’s mission is to improve urban public education for grades Pre-kindergarten through 12.

Forming Real Partnerships

Urban schools need more than just funding. They also require close partnerships with allies who will help them create lasting success for their students. Longfield launches such two-way relationships with the question, “How can we partner with your school to address the challenges you face?”
We encourage candor from our grantees. We strive to be a true partner, sharing in the school’s failures and successes. We do not view failures as setbacks, but rather, as opportunities to discover what really works. We support the experimentation and innovation that will lead to real solutions, no matter how long this takes, or the challenges that may arise along the way.

We create an active collaboration with administrators, teachers, parents and students, helping them produce the results they want to achieve. We also support schools by assisting them in hands-on ways, such as:

  • Researching and offering advice about the most effective educational methods
  • Leveraging relationships to identify additional resources and facilitate partnerships
  • Gathering and analyzing data to support planning and program assessment

Focus on Learning

We are dedicated to helping public schools to gather and analyze the data required to assess current needs and rethink programs to make them truly benefit students. Our focus is on identifying resources that accomplish real, results-driven reform and applying them in more schools. Such strategies include:

  • Strengthening teacher practices
  • Cultivating new educational approaches
  • Offering additional student services to improve student learning

No Sacred Cows

There are many great programs, but those we choose to support must be bold, inclusive of all students, and capable of growing systematically over time. 

When we evaluate those areas of the school system that could benefit from reform, nothing is off-limits. We support Superintendent Dr. Carol Johnson in her 2008 statement to the Boston School Committee that “Adult issues in our schools, in the political arena, or throughout our city must take a back seat to our efforts to develop, educate, and in some cases, rescue the youth of our city.” All endeavors should be reviewed to make sure their focus is on the children we serve.