Carmen Schools of Science and Technology
Press Release

Carmen Schools of Science & Technology Announces $3.5 Million Gift From Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott

Top Performing Charter Network Receives Donation as it Celebrates 15th Anniversary

By - Nov 28th, 2022 12:27 pm

MILWAUKEE, NOVEMBER 28, 2022 – Top performing charter school network Carmen Schools of Science and Technology today announced it has received a new $3.5 million donation from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott.

The generous one-time donation comes as Carmen celebrates its 15th anniversary. The school is dedicated to providing Milwaukee students with the highest quality education.

“We are beyond thankful for Ms. Scott’s generosity and support for our work at Carmen. This gift recognizes the impact all of our teachers and staff have had on the lives of thousands of students and families over the past 15 years,” said Jennifer Lopez, Chief Executive Officer at Carmen Schools of Science and Technology. “We know this gift will have a profound impact on the future of our schools and on the educational opportunities we create for our students.”

Scott has pledged to donate the majority of her wealth with a focus on supporting organizations that provide opportunities to underrepresented groups, including those addressing racial and socio-economic inequality.

With five schools in Milwaukee serving grades K4 through 12th Grade, the Carmen model develops critical thinkers and self-directed learners. The support of donors like Scott, dedicated teachers and committed families has helped Carmen reach the highest graduation rates of public schools in Milwaukee – including both public charter schools and traditional public district schools. In 2022, Carmen was named to the U.S. News and World Report’s national list of Best High Schools, ranking 1st overall in Milwaukee and 10th overall in Wisconsin.

“This important gift is critical to address systemic inequities in education funding in Wisconsin,” Lopez added. “Students at charter schools like Carmen receive only 63 cents for every dollar that a student at a traditional district school receives. Carmen is excited to use these funds to continue providing the highest quality, college prep education to our students.”

The one-time funds from Scott’s gift will be used to support Carmen’s three organizational focus areas, including:

  • Student Academic Support and Enrichment: Creating new opportunities for students to have the best and most enriching education possible at all Carmen campuses.
  • Staff Retention and Longevity: Supporting compensation planning and seeking new ways to recognize Carmen’s its incredible teachers, staff and leaders.
  • Facility Improvements: Ensuring Carmen schools have the best learning and teaching environments and are able to serve more students and families in Milwaukee.

About Carmen Schools of Science and Technology
Carmen Schools of Science and Technology is a network of one public elementary school, two public middle schools, and three public high schools with an unparalleled track record of success in educating and graduating Milwaukee students prepared for success in college, work and as leaders in their communities. Ninety percent of the more than 2,100 students served come from families with low-incomes and who live in some of Milwaukee’s most challenged neighborhoods. These are students who enter Carmen’s middle and high schools with reading and math achievement levels well below state and national averages, yet graduate with some of the highest ACT scores among all public schools in the city. In 2022, Carmen was named to the U.S. News and World Report’s national list of Best High Schools, ranking 1st overall in Milwaukee and 10th overall in Wisconsin. Learn more at www.carmenschools.org.

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