Comment on Rejecting Federal Education Funds

The Maddox Fund submitted the following comment to the members on the committee reviewing a potential rejection of $1.8 billion in federal education funding.

Dear Members:

The Dan and Margaret Maddox Fund is a nonprofit foundation whose mission is to better our community through partnerships that improve the lives of young people and protect the natural environment. We are reaching out regarding the working group starting on November 6 that will be discussing the state’s rejection of federal education funds.

In this working group, we hope that you will remember that federal dollars make up 11% of Tennessee school districts’ revenue.  The rejection of these funds will negatively impact students from low-income backgrounds, those in rural communities, students with disabilities, and those facing homelessness. 

Since the Maddox Fund’s inception, we have committed over $23 million in funding to education and youth – serving nonprofit organizations working in the 41-county Middle Tennessee region.  However, we know that this is just a drop in the bucket when it comes to ensuring that every student has access to a nurturing learning environment.  Private philanthropic institutions have often been called to meet resource gaps in the community but refusing $1.1 billion in federal funding would create a need far too great for local funders to fill.

We hope that you will consider the above as you discuss the proposal.  The Maddox Fund is also available to answer any questions you might have.  Thank you for your work to help ensure that our students have the resources they need to thrive.

From the Dan & Margaret Maddox Fund

For any questions about our comment, please feel free to email

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