LISC has been awarded $6.9 million by the U.S. Department of Education as part of the Credit Enhancement for Charter School Facilities Program. We will use this support to “expand access to capital and in many cases lower the cost of capital for schools. This in turn keeps scarce resources in the classroom, paying for great teachers, curriculum and other program supports,” said Sara Sorbello, LISC’s Vice President of Charter School Financing.
LISC is awarded $6.9M federal credit enhancement grant to support charter school facilities
NEW YORK (October 2, 2018) – The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) has been awarded $6.9 million by the U.S. Department of Education as part of the Credit Enhancement for Charter School Facilities Program.
The Credit Enhancement for Charter School Facilities Program provides competitive grants that nonprofit and public entities can use to leverage private capital for charter school facilities projects. Since its inception in 2001, the program has proven critical to charter school growth. “This award is vital to our mission of supporting high-quality charter schools. Securing adequate facilities continues to be a major challenge to charter school expansion,” said Sara Sorbello, LISC’s Vice President of Charter School Financing.
Recent research has shown that nearly fifty percent of charter schools are in buildings that will not accommodate their student population in five years. “Schools are sometimes forced to delay their openings or hold back on growth because they are unable to access affordable private sector capital to finance their facilities. The credit enhancement program enables LISC to partner with the private sector to expand access to capital and in many cases lower the cost of capital for schools. This in turn keeps scarce resources ‘in the classroom’, paying for great teachers, curriculum and other program supports,” Sorbello added.
This is the fifth Credit Enhancement Program grant award that LISC has received. To date, the organization has received $41.4 million in credit enhancement funds and used those funds to leverage more than $920.3 million in financing to support 128 charter schools in 21 states and the District of Columbia. LISC will use its new award to continue supporting high-quality charter schools with their facilities development and financing needs through innovative financing, sharing best practices, and promoting transparency of financing options to help school leaders secure affordable debt.
LISC combines corporate, government and philanthropic resources to help nonprofit community development corporations revitalize distressed neighborhoods. Since 1980, LISC has invested $18.6 billion to build or rehab 376,191 affordable homes and apartments and develop 63 million square feet of retail, community and educational space.
All children deserve access to a successful public school in their community. LISC Charter School Financing (CSF) funds school construction for high-quality public charter schools that serve predominantly low-income students. To realize this vision, LISC CSF: