Last month, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced more than $3 million in grants for Preschool Pay for Success feasibility pilots. Through innovative funding strategies, these grants will help eight government organizations at the state and local level to increase access to quality preschool and improve educational outcomes for our nation’s youngest learners.

Among the winners are one state (Minnesota), one charter school, one school district and five local government agencies.

  • Napa Valley Unified School District, CA, $380,944
  • Santa Clara County Office of Education, CA, $392,704
  • Ventura County Office of Education, CA, $397,000
  • Minnesota Department of Education, MN, $397,158
  • Mecklenburg County Government, NC, $335,677
  • Cuyahoga County Office of Early Learning, OH, $374,320
  • Clatsop County, OR, $350,000
  • The Legacy Charter School, SC, $381,815

“We’re pleased that these grantees will work in their communities to make the case for investing in early education and drive expansion of high-quality preschool,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr.

Pay for Success (PFS) has emerged as a new financing mechanism that leverages community-based solutions to public sector interests with private investment. Though public investment in early childhood education has undoubtedly increased, the demand is far greater than what has been financed, leaving a marked supply shortage. PFS financing is one way to narrow this gap between supply and demand.

Through each feasibility study, we will learn how the Pay for Success model can be used to expand preschool to more children in the future. Each grantee will be evaluated based on specific, measurable outcomes. And only when those outcomes are achieved will the government foot the bill.

When implemented with a commitment to transparency and accountability, PFS is a viable mechanism to expand and deepen investment in early learning at the local, state and federal levels.

Read more about the Pay for Success grants here.

Read more about recent Pay for Success legislation on FFYF’s blog.