K-12 Education

Spectacular opportunities exist for philanthropists to promote excellence in primary and secondary education.

One of the major strategic challenges in philanthropy is to solve the problem of low-quality education in the developing world, which is often made worse by the monopolistic role of the State and associated corruption, which siphons money away from poor areas.

Charles Harper has special expertise in K-12 education reform initiatives in the developing world.

These involve “voucherization” and support for growth and innovation in the entrepreneurial private sector to serve very poor people for whom existing State-provided education often fails completely.

Harper was a key talent scout, who early-on identified and supported, (through capital provided by The John Templeton Foundation), the research of the pioneering researcher and visionary James Tooley.  (See his important book, “The Beautiful Tree”.)  Tooley’s research identified a thriving private sector of edu-entrepreneurs serving poor people all over the world. These small private schools often provide superior results at a small fraction of the cost of State sector schools.

Vision-Five considers this to be a cutting-edge area of philanthropy.

Key opportunities involve a billion poor children in the world today.



  Private Education is Good for the Poor: 

  A Study of  Private Schools Serving the Poor in Low Income Counties. 


Some major reform efforts in India and Africa inspired by this research:

  i) School Choice / Center for Civil Society, India: http://www.schoolchoice.in


  ii) Indian School Finance Company:


iii) Opportunity International Microschools project:


  iv) Orient Global Education Fund Rumi Schools of Excellence:


  v) New Globe Schools: