July 16, 2012 11:43 PM Subscribe
posted by latkes (18 comments total)
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The Gates Foundation's Leveraged Philanthropy: Corporate Profit Versus Humanity
on the Gates Foundation's international aid projects and II
on Gates' domestic education projects.
...For example, the Pearson Education Foundation is a philanthropy which is under investigation for its work as an intermediary on behalf of its parent corporation, global giant Pearson Education, whose 2010 US sales totaled £2.6 billion (British pounds).
In April 2011, the Gates Foundation announced a partnership with the Pearson Foundation to produce resources for its Common Core State Standards project, and Pearson simultaneously announced it was developing a complete digital curriculum to support the proposed standards. The alliance was described in this NY Times story, Foundations Join to Offer Online Courses for Schools.
Microsoft also unveiled its own $15 million research and development effort for "Next Generation" products, aligned to the new standards. Possible return on that investment is staggering, and almost every feature of the Gates Foundation's program will create a dramatically favorable business climate for the data industry.
The conservative Heartland Institute puts the cost of implementing the Common Core program at $30 billion dollars, whereas the conservative Fordham Institute, heavily funded by the Gates Foundation, argues for a range of lower possible costs. States face a confusing legal mandate to fund a voluntary national program they don't remember volunteering for. This might not be a public service.
We have to confront the likelihood that the Pearson Foundation is actually representing the profit-seeking interests of the Pearson Corporation.
Is the Gates Foundation, to an unknowable extent, locking down control of a government-mandated multi-billion dollar marketing opportunity for Microsoft and other allies?