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Tipsheet

Obama Secured $$ for Ayers' Educational Experiments

Just some things to keep in mind for when Obama is inevitably questioned abou this relationship with William Ayers.

Here's my paraphrased version of a recent CNN report:As board member of the Annenberg Foundation Obama helped secure $50 million for Bill Ayres' education experiments, like a UN-like "Peace School," for the Annenberg Project. The project was later shut down because it was deemed worthless. Obama also used his board position to route money to Rev.Jeremiah Wright's church.
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Long(er) version:
A review of board minutes and records by CNN show Obama, crossed paths repeatedly with Ayers at board meetings of the Annenberg Challenge Project.The Annenberg Foundation gave the project a $50 million grant to match local private funds to improve schools, and Ayers fought to bring the grant to Chicago, according to participants and project records.The project's organizing committee asked Obama to serve as the board chairman in 1995. Annenberg Project Executive Director Ken Rollings said Ayers was not a member of that ad hoc group when the decision was made. For seven years, Ayers and Obama -- among many others -- worked on funding for education projects, including some projects advocated by Ayers...the board, for example, gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to Bill Ayers' small schools project. The project promoted alternative education, including projects like the Peace School -- where the curriculum centered on a United Nations theme -- and another school where the focus was African-American studies...The project shut down in 2003 after achieving "little impact on school improvement and student outcomes," its final report stated.While working on the Annenberg project, Obama and Ayers also served together on a second charitable foundation, the Woods Fund. It was that foundation that Obama referenced in the debate -- not the Annenberg Challenge.Among Wood Foundation recipients were the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's Trinity United Church, where Obama attended and was married; and the Children and Family Justice Center, where Ayers' wife Dohrn was director.
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