The Who, How, and What of Private
As we've noted in this report, our review of the literature on private giving to public schools raised several questions on who the private givers are, how schools and districts attract private support, and what type of support they get and how that support is used. We sought answers to these questions through site visits to six school districts in Los Angeles County and ten schools within those districts.
To document our findings, we developed a matrix of private giving, displayed in Table 4.1. The content of the matrix was developed first through our review of the literature,1 and then supplemented with data we gathered during our site visits. This matrix presents a useful framework for examining the various di mensions of private giving.
Table 4.1 demonstrates the potential paths that resources might follow as they move from private givers to eventual use by districts and schools. Specifically, both monetary and in-kind resources flow from private givers through various entities that attract donations through a variety of mechanisms. In turn, private giving may take a variety of forms and be used for diverse purposes.
The matrix serves as the framework for our discussion of the results of our study. The beginning sections in this chapter correspond to the column headings in the Table 4.1 matrix. We explore the how, why, and what of private giving from the perspective of the district staff members and school principals whom we interviewed. We note the frequency of each type of private giving and describe how these resources are used at both the district and school level.
We also discuss differences across schools and districts to the extent that private giving appears to be related to school and district socioeconomic status, as measured by participation in the federally funded Free and Reduced Price Lunch Program.2____________________