Today Eliza Shapiro at Capital NY reports the following:
The Success Academy charter school network has received an $8.5 million donation from the philanthropic foundation of John Paulson, a billionaire hedge fund manager.
The donation, which was announced on Thursday, will be used to build new Success elementary, middle and high schools.
The network is expanding significantly, with 14 new schools opening in the next few years. By 2020, the network will have about 50 schools educating about 36,000 students.
The network's critics, some of whom are allied with teachers' unions, have assailed its close ties to hedge fund managers. The new donation is sure to give those groups more ammunition, although Moskowitz has said that charity goes to an array of worthy goals, including education. Success raised $9.3 million at its most recent benefit, almost exclusively from financiers.
That's $9.3 million at the spring benefit and $8.5 million from Paulson for a cool $17.8 million dollars from just two events - the benefit and Paulson's largesse.
Add in the $9.7 million pro-charter Families for Excellent Schools spent lobbying and carrying Moskowitz's water in Albany and in the media and you have Moskowitz doing pretty good for herself despite that existential crisis she declared if mean ol' Bill de Blasio forced her to pay rent for co-locations or pay for private space on her own dime.
If Moskowitz can raise this kind of money in so brief a period, isn't it time she pull her own weight and stop taking money away from New York City's public school children?