From the Board Chair

I believe that an excellent public education can drastically change the trajectory of a young person’s life. North Carolina has a strong history of leadership in public education, from pre-K through higher ed, but today, far too few students receive a high-quality education.

With our two key focus areas of early grade achievement and excellent teachers and leaders, we, at The Belk Foundation, see many opportunities to create positive, sustainable change for students in NC.

Teachers and school leaders are the most important in-school factors for student academic success. We fund efforts to recruit, develop and retain the best talent for our schools. And we know that building a strong base is critical to future academic and life success. In addition to programs working on the ground with students, we support organizations focused on system-improvement for early grade success and state-level organizations focused on the policies affecting K-3 students.

The legacy of The Belk Foundation begins in 1928 with my grandfather, William Henry Belk, and his brother, Dr. John M. Belk, and runs through four generations of the Belk family who have served on the board. As a family foundation, we are deeply committed to our mission. Yet we don’t have all the answers. We’re always learning and seeking new partnerships. We hope you will join us in our focus on an excellent public education for all students.

John R. Belk, Board Chair of The Belk Foundation