Charles Butt Gives $50M More for TX Education
San Antonio-based H-E-B Grocery Co. Chairman and CEO Charles Butt has pledged $50 million over the next decade in an effort to train teachers at Texas public schools, part of a continued effort by the Lone Star State philanthropist to support Texas education.
The gift will be given to the Raising Texas Teachers scholarship program, an initiative of the Austin-based Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation. The program is anticipated to grow to include at least 500 teaching fellows annually from more than 10 university teacher preparation programs. Each teaching fellow will receive $8,000 per year as part of the Charles Butt Scholarship for Aspiring Teachers, as well as ongoing training and development opportunities, mentorship from sitting public school educators, and involvement in a statewide aspiring-teachers network facilitated by Raise Your Hand.
The program will expand over time to include leadership development opportunities for the state’s top high school students interested in a career in education. Partner universities will also receive technical assistance to increase the quality of teacher preparation in Texas.
“Research consistently shows that the strength of the teacher makes the biggest difference in influencing a student’s success,” Butt said. “To improve academic achievement, it is critical that Texas elevate the status of the teaching profession, strengthen the existing pool of aspiring teachers, and inspire our most talented high school graduates to consider a career in teaching.”
University partners were selected through a competitive RFP process based on their capacity and commitment to deliver competency-based clinical preparation, and a willingness to establish strong collaborative relationships with districts where graduates teach. Select universities include Our Lady of the Lake University (San Antonio), Rice University (Houston), Southern Methodist University (Dallas), Texas A&M University- Special Education program (College Station), Texas Tech University (Lubbock), Trinity University (San Antonio), University of North Texas-Dallas, University of Houston, University of Texas Austin and University of Texas Rio Grande Valley-Student Teacher Educator Preparation: University Partnership (Edinburg).
This marks the second major initiative in 2017 of Butt supporting Texas education, the first being a $100 million donation to create a center for the training and development of school district leaders in the Lone Star State.