News

NewSchools Venture Fund Managing Partner Jim Peyser Named to National Charter Schools Hall of Fame

For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Ventura, (415) 615-6862/ jventura@newschools.org

ATLANTA, GA, June 22, 2011—Jim Peyser, the Managing Partner for City Funds at NewSchools Venture Fund, was named to the national Charter Schools Hall of Fame today in a ceremony at the National Charter Schools Conference in Atlanta.

Peyser is a seven-year veteran of NewSchools, an organization that provides funding and management support to entrepreneurial organizations that improve public education for low-income children. He also serves as chairman of the board of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, and from 1999 through 2006, he served as Chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Education. In all of these roles, Jim has played a pivotal role in the growth of some of the strongest public charter school organizations in the country. He currently serves on the boards of several very strong charter organizations, including Achievement First, Success Charter Network, and Uncommon Schools.

“Jim has helped to shape the most important part of the charter school world—the high-performing charter management organizations, which are changing lives for low-income kids,” said NewSchools CEO Ted Mitchell. “We’re delighted to see him receive this recognition.”

At the same conference, former President Bill Clinton was honored with a lifetime achievement award.

In accepting the award, Peyser said, “I accept this honor today, not as recognition for a job well done, but as a spur to redouble our collective commitment to the long, hard work that lies ahead in growing the charter school movement and in creating great schools for high-need, underserved communities.”

Paul Grogan, CEO of The Boston Foundation recognized Peyser’s contributions to school reform, saying, “Massachusetts is one of the chief laboratories for education reform in the United States and has been for the last 20 years, and no one has been more of an architect of that reform than Jim Peyser.”

In 2009, Peyser led a ballot initiative petition drive, which contributed to the passage of legislation in 2010 lifting the cap on the number of Massachusetts charter schools. He is currently leading NewSchools’ effort to raise philanthropic capital to support the growth of high-performing charter schools in Boston.
Joining the hall of fame with Peyser was Joel Klein, former chancellor of public schools in New York City, who now leads education innovation at News Corporation; and Donald Hense, founder and Chairman of the Board at Friendship Public Charter Schools in Washington, DC.

About NewSchools Venture Fund
NewSchools Venture Fund (www.newschools.org) is a national nonprofit venture philanthropy firm that aims to transform public education for underserved children by supporting education entrepreneurs who create nonprofit and for-profit organizations. Its investments are designed to make a significant systemic impact in some of the nation’s most challenged urban communities, including New York City, Chicago, Washington D.C., New Orleans, Los Angeles, and Oakland, California. The NewSchools portfolio includes some of the most innovative and high-impact organizations working to improve education for low income children today.