Dear Governors: Gates, Zuckerberg Push Divisive Agendas in Public Schools

Parents Defending Education, our partner organization, released Cracked Foundations: Philanthropy’s Bid to Control Public Schools. This report documents how several large philanthropic organizations are quietly but significantly promoting harmful race and gender ideology in public schools. 

Most parents and citizens believe that local taxpayers fund schools in their district. For the most part, this is true—but in recent years, private foundations have stepped into local school districts and used their enormous philanthropic power to help districts promote divisive, politicized curricula that detracts from academic excellence.

From 2017 to 2021, five organizations—the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Wallace Foundation, the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, and the Windward Fund—poured more than $200 million into 70 public school districts across the United States. 

PDE Action wrote to Governors Greg Abbott of Texas, Ron DeSantis of Florida, Mike DeWine of Ohio, and Kevin Stitt of Oklahoma on how these philanthropies push divisive, politically biased lessons and policies on students in their states. We urge all governors and relevant state authorities to investigate this matter and take appropriate action.

You can read Parents Defending Education’s Cracked Foundations report here, and find our letters to the governors below.

Letter to Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Leter to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis

Letter to Ohio Governor Mike DeWine

Letter to Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt