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Haslam Donation to Cleveland Charter Schools is one the Nation's Largest

Jimmy Haslam file photo

Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam is giving Cleveland’s Breakthrough charter schools $10 million.  As WKSU’s Kevin Niedermier reports, the money will help what is considered Ohio’s best performing charter system grow.


President of the Breakthrough school’s fundraising organization, John Zitzner, says the Haslam donation represents half of the $20 million needed to add eight more schools to the system.  

“This money is going to go to our growth plan. We have aspirational goals of 20 schools by 2020. And since we don’t get facilities funding from the state as public school districts do, we need to raise the money philanthropically.”

Zitzner says the Haslam donation is a challenge grant, so that should help with raising the full $20 million. He says the donation is the largest the charter system has received, and one of the largest for any charter schools nationally. The Breakthrough schools do receive tax money from  the state for operations, and local tax funding through its partnership with the Cleveland Municipal School District.