LAEP Receives Grant from Staples Foundation for Learning

MARCH 2011

Los Angeles Education Partnership (LAEP) has received a $15,000 grant from Staples Foundation for Learning (SFFL), a private foundation created by Staples, Inc. Funding from SFFL will support a college-access project in 12 small schools or small learning communities (SLCs) that LAEP oversees, which enroll nearly 3,800 primarily low-income students of color. The 12 SLCs are in seven L.A. Unified School District high schools. The project will lower three primary barriers to college for low-income, minority students: poor academic preparation, navigating college enrollment, and access to financial aid.

“The Staples Foundation for Learning has made an important commitment to the youth of Los Angeles through their longstanding support for LAEP over many years,” said Peggy Funkhouser, president & CEO of LAEP.

Students in LAEP’s small schools and SLCs take a college-prep curriculum, and data show they attend school, stay in school, accumulate appropriate credits, and pass the high school exit exam on their first try in higher percentages than nonparticipants. College access activities are structured around a mock college application process (navigating enrollment) for grades 9 and 10 that includes a college visit, researching colleges, building a college portfolio throughout high school, mock college interview, counseling for struggling students and credit recovery plans to lessen the risk of dropping out. The project offers workshops on college financial literacy and financial aid forms for parents and students. Read more here about a recent college tour.

“Staples Foundation for Learning remains committed to supporting organizations like Los Angeles Education Partnership as they work hard to provide a phenomenal college access program that truly makes an impact on the lives of young people who might otherwise never learn about resources that can help them go to college,” said Amy Shanler, director of community relations, Staples, Inc.

About Los Angeles Education Partnership (LAEP)
Los Angeles Education Partnership’s mission is to help students in high-need schools improve their academic achievement by partnering with educators, parents and the community.  Founded in 1984, LAEP became the first educational-transformation organization in Los Angeles and among those at the forefront of the movement nationwide. LAEP focuses efforts on creating more effective teaching and learning environments in small schools, connecting parents and communities to schools to overcome learning barriers, and disseminating best practices and what they have learned from their work.  Each year, LAEP serves more than 1,600 educators and 80,000 students from prekindergarten through high school in high-poverty, multicultural communities across Los Angeles County. For more information about LAEP, please visit

About Staples Foundation for Learning
Founded in 2002, Staples Foundation for Learning has contributed to nearly 1,000 global, national and local charities that provide educational opportunities and job skills for all people, with a special emphasis on disadvantaged youth. Staples Foundation for Learning builds lasting relationships with world-class organizations including Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Ashoka, Earth Force, TakingITGlobal, and the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City.  The foundation is the private charitable arm of Staples, Inc. and is an integral component of Staples Soul, which recognizes the connection between long-term business success and the impact Staples has on associates, communities and the planet. For more information about the foundation and Staples Soul, please visit and