This is what urban Catholic schools need: A business group has donated $4 million to help create endowments for seven Catholic schools in Pennsylvania, including five in Philadelphia. Much of the corporate philanthropy aimed at education these days has gone to charter schools, which undermine inner-city Catholic schools but don't have a proven record of success.An endowment is often the last thing officials at an inner-city Catholic school can think about because they are busy just trying to make the payroll and keep the building from falling apart. But it is needed so the schools don't have to operate constantly on the edge, a precarious position that makes them very vulnerable to economic downturns. It was also smart of Business Leaders Organized for Catholic Schools to set this up as as a matching grant program, since we Catholics need some encouragement to dig deeper to support Catholic schools.
Paul Moses is the author, most recently, of The Italian Squad: The True Story of the Immigrant Cops Who Fought the Rise of the Mafia (NYU Press, 2023). He is a contributing writer. Twitter: @PaulBMoses.