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KeyBank, First Niagara Foundation announce $1 million contribution to Teach for America Buffalo

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Tue, Feb 26th 2019 02:35 pm

Investment will be used to support Teach For America Buffalo’s local efforts to find outstanding leaders who commit to expanding educational opportunities

As part of its partnership with the First Niagara Foundation, KeyBank on Tuesday announced a $1 million charitable contribution to Teach for America-Buffalo.

Since its inception in 2014, Teach For America has brought to Buffalo Public Schools a network of more than 120 people, all of whom began by teaching in some of the community’s highest-need schools, and who have collectively reached more than 10,000 students. Teach For America Buffalo also supports more than 85 alumni, five of whom currently lead high-performing traditional public and charter schools. This investment will support the school district and organization’s partnership in permanently eliminating educational inequity.

“Teach For America Buffalo began in partnership with our schools, students, parents, community partners and faith-based leaders, and we are immensely proud of being a locally grown organization,” said Katie Campos, executive director of Teach For America-Buffalo. “We extend our deepest gratitude to our partners at KeyBank and the First Niagara Foundation as this charitable gift will allow us to further our work and impact in ensuring that our students become the future leaders our city needs. To do so, every student in Buffalo must have access to an excellent and equitable education that prepares them for the college or career of their choice and a life of expanded opportunities. We are proud to be a strong partner to Buffalo Public Schools and Superintendent Dr. Cash, who work relentlessly to deliver on Buffalo’s education bargain.”

This year, Teach for America Buffalo will celebrate its five-year anniversary. Since 2014, KeyBank and the First Niagara Foundation have been among the organization’s first and long-standing partners.

“This grant will help Teach For America Buffalo continue the good work and positive academic momentum that is underway in the city school district,” said Gary Quenneville, First Niagara Foundation board member and KeyBank regional sales executive. “We are pleased to support this initiative that will have a transformative effect on city schools.”

Elizabeth Gurney, executive director of the First Niagara Foundation, added, “We care deeply about initiatives that help our children achieve their full potential. Our partnership with Teach For America to promote academic excellence will help ensure that our schools have the resources needed to provide a solid learning environment, strong community and bright future for our region.”

Dr. Kriner Cash, superintendent, Buffalo Public Schools said, “The Teach For America partnership has benefitted the district enormously in the last five years through the recruitment of strong, diverse teaching candidates in identified shortage areas. I thank Katie Campos for her extraordinary TFA leadership, and KeyBank and the First Niagara Foundation for their generous grant in recognition of the importance of the TFA/BPS partnership. As a district that seeks top talent and diversity in its teaching force, we expect to grow and retain our corps of TFA instructional leaders for many years to come.”

Alex Montante, founding chair, Teach For America Buffalo board of directors, said “KeyBank and the First Niagara Foundation share a deep belief in the unlimited potential of our students. We are grateful to be able to work alongside our community partners to honor the brilliance and creativity of our students.”

The announcement took place in the classroom of one of Teach For America Buffalo’s 2014 founding corps members, Maggie Chappel. Now a Teach For America alum, Chappel is one of the many leaders who have committed to providing educational equity within Buffalo. As a fifth-year first-grade teacher at Frank A. Sedita Academy, her belief in her students and families grounds her in the work and encourages her to continue to advocate and educate her students about the power of community, tapping into her students’ unlimited potential.

About Teach For America

Teach For America works in partnership with urban and rural communities in more than 50 regions across the country to expand educational opportunity for children. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding leaders to make an initial two-year commitment to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the effort to end educational inequity. Today, Teach For America is a force of nearly 60,000 alumni and corps members committed to profound systemic change. From classrooms to districts to state houses across America, they’re reimagining education to realize the day when every child has an equal opportunity to learn, to grow, to influence and to lead. Teach For America is a proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network. For more information, visit www.teachforamerica.org.

Learn more about KeyBank at www.key.com and about The First Niagara Foundation at http://www.firstniagarafoundation.org.

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