How The Nonprofit Sector Lost Out On $17 Billion In The Soon-To-Lapse Charitable Deduction Act
In a giving season when many smaller and medium-sized nonprofit organizations wonder about how to retain and expand their small-dollar donors in relation to stagnant donations, perhaps one of the more salient solutions is about to expire. House Resolution (H.R.) 3435, better known as the “Charitable Act,” (see also S. 556) is soon to meet its demise via legislative purgatory. The Charitable Act, which organizations such as Independent Sector cites as a valuable opportunity to spur increases in giving, will soon expire with a less than 1% chance of passing, according to GovTrack. The bill would have increased the standard deduction for tax filers that do not itemize taxes to approximately $4,000, giving the 85% of U.S. taxpayers who do not itemize their tax returns access to the same benefits of donating to charity that wealthy donors employ. For now though, the standard deduction remains at $300/$600 as the standard deduction for charitable giving.
Let’s put this another way, when Warren Buffett donated $51 billion last year, and because he has access to expensive tax experts who could itemize his return, he got the full deduction in his taxes for charitable giving. But Buffy (not a real person but a heck of a vampire slayer) who donated $1,000 and didn’t itemize their return (just like the overwhelming majority of Americans), only got $300 of the donation taken off their tax bill. In a tax system that intentionally perpetuates complexity, this inequitable access to deductions is particularly painful for a nonprofit sector desperately trying to maintain their grassroots donors.
In a bid to tackle systemic racism and improve student engagement, Glassbrook Elementary in Hayward splurged $250,000 on Woke Kindergarten, a program designed to empower teachers to disrupt racism and oppression. Despite the hefty investment, funded by a federal grant aimed at aiding underperforming schools, Glassbrook’s test scores in English and math have seen a worrying drop, with less than 4% of students proficient in math and under 12% at grade level in English.
Hayward Superintendent Jason Reimann noted a subsequent improvement in student attendance, with 44% of students considered chronically absent last year, down from 61% the year prior. Though, the Chronicle pointed out that a similar improvement was seen districtwide, suggesting this improvement was due to a larger trend.
Additionally, anti-semitic concerns have been raised by other news outlets pointing out that that Woke Kindergarten states on their site that: “One place that people are demanding a permanent ceasefire for is in Palestine because they are being occupied, or controlled, by a made-up place called Israel that has settlers called Zionist who are harming and killing the Palestinian people who have always live on the land.”
While many champion the need for confronting historical biases in education, critics argue that such programs divert attention and funds from proven academic interventions, as seen in the success of targeted math programs elsewhere. Sadly, this one narrative is now racing around right leaning news outlets as an example of why not to teach about the history of racism all together, rather than a balanced ‘in addition to, not instead of’ approach.
OpenAI has partnered with Common Sense Media, a nonprofit ratings organization, to develop AI guidelines aimed at kids and families. The collaboration will focus on creating AI guidelines and education
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