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Apr 26, 2012

LA's Promise Receives $100,000 Gift from Goldman Sachs Gives

Turnaround Continues at John Muir Middle School

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (April 26, 2012)—LA’s Promise announced today that it has received a $100,000 gift from Goldman Sachs Gives. This gift will support the continued school transformation work at John Muir Middle School (John Muir), a public school in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), recently restructured under No Child Left Behind. Goldman’s contribution allows LA’s Promise to implement comprehensive programming, instruction, curriculum and enrichment opportunities in the form of professional development for teachers and supplements basic equipment purchases necessary for smooth day-to-day campus operations.

“We are delighted Goldman Sachs Gives recognizes LA’s Promise’s success in working with South LA schools and continues to invest their time and financial support,” said Veronica Melvin, President and CEO, LA’s Promise. “We are excited about the additional opportunities we will be able to provide John Muir and the positive effect it will have on its students and families.”

“Goldman Sachs is excited and proud to support LA’s Promise in its efforts to ensure a quality education for the children of South Los Angeles,” said Gene Sykes, Goldman Sachs Managing Director. “It is truly gratifying to see John Muir evolving as a community school. We look forward to John Muir’s continued improvement and a positive outcome for all of its students.”

John Muir was one of three “focus schools” selected for radical reform by LAUSD because it failed for years to provide students an acceptable education. In collaboration with a new principal and teaching staff, LA’s Promise is working to dramatically improve the school’s instructional program and redesign the school into a community hub, expanding the resources available to students and their families. John Muir lacks basic technology and school supplies due to negligence and district and statewide funding cuts. LA’s Promise has implemented school uniforms and partnered with several organizations to bring valuable enhancements to the school’s instructional program, campus redesign and student culture.

As a result of funding from the US Soccer Foundation there are now 200 6th graders participating in Soccer for Success, an afterschool program administered by the Los Angeles Brotherhood Crusade and the YMCA. Additionally, the USA Track & Field Foundation recently piloted its Run With Us! program, the Los Angeles Clippers selected John Muir for its FIT challenge, and the American Heart Association and Community Services Unlimited are breaking ground on a Teaching Garden.  Early academic assessments show overall student improvement compared to last year, especially among the 6th grade class.  Additionally, proficient attendance (96% of school days attended) has increased by 10% and suspensions are down by 3% just since September 2011 when John Muir became an LA’s Promise school.

Goldman Sachs first funded LA’s Promise in 2011 via Goldman Sachs Gives, a donor-advised fund, from which current and former Goldman Sachs partners can direct funding to qualified non-profit organizations.  At the direction of Goldman Sachs Managing Director, Gene Sykes, 2011 funding supported LA’s Promise work at West Adams Preparatory and Manual Arts High School.

LA’s Promise continues to seek additional support to ensure that John Muir becomes one of the most effective middle schools in California, where ALL students are prepared to succeed in high school and college, and ALL students develop the knowledge and habits required to be healthy and successful in the 21st century.


About LA's Promise

LA's Promise is a nonprofit organization working to radically shift the education, health and social outcomes for thousands of youth in one South Los Angeles community. LA's Promise transforms chronically failing public schools, opens new schools and remakes schools into community hubs that offer comprehensive support services for students and families. LA's Promise will prepare every child in LA's Promise Neighborhood to be college–ready, healthy and successful in life. For more information on LA's Promise, please go to


About Goldman Sachs Gives

Goldman Sachs Gives is a donor-advised fund through which Goldman Sachs and its senior employees can recommend grants to qualified non-profit organizations globally. Established in 2007, Goldman Sachs Gives supports charities in communities around the world with a focus on benefiting underserved populations. Its grants support programs that build and stabilize communities, increase educational opportunities, honor service and veterans, and create jobs and economic growth.