New York, NY

Tax ID:


Tax-Exempt Status:


Budget (2021):

Revenue: $10,569,827
Expenses: $9,129,307
Assets: $7,430,342


Education Activist Organization




Elizabeth Green

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Chalkbeat is a left-of-center nonprofit media organization that is focused on local reporting on education issues in the United States. Since 2020, the organization has embraced critical race theory-inspired “antiracist” activism and regularly reports on the use of critical race theory in teaching and efforts to bar it from public school curriculums.

Founding and History

Chalkbeat was founded in 2014 with the goal of providing local reporting on school and educational issues. Chalkbeat has a presence in eight locations around the country: Chicago, Colorado, Detroit, Indiana, Newark, New York, Philadelphia, and Tennessee and has sought to expand its operation further. 1

In 2020, Chalkbeat aggressively embraced critical race theory and so-called “antiracism” education. Chalkbeat founder Elizabeth Green released a statement saying that outlet was adding “antiracism” to the organization’s core values and approvingly quote controversial academic Ibram X. Kendi. Green lamented that traditional journalistic practices were upholding white supremacy and that Chalkbeat was not sufficiently diverse and would hire more minorities in the future. 2

That year, Chalkbeat also launched a spin-off news organization called Votebeat, which was intended to cover local elections until at least the end of the 2022 midterm cycle. Like its parent project, Votebeat adopts a left-wing perspective on race and frames right-of-center policy in a negative light, especially election-integrity measures. 3

In early 2023, Chalkbeat and Votebeat announced that they had restructured, both becoming projects of a new parent organization, the Civic News Company. 4


In 2021, Chalkbeat received a total of more than $10.75 million in revenue, an increase from just under $7.76 million the previous year. The organization’s net assets in 2021 totaled just over $7.1 million. 5

In June 2020, Chalkbeat reported $7,445,164 in revenue. Of that, $7,314,781 was derived from contributions and grants, with other funding coming from program service revenue, investment income, and other income such as the sale of ad space. The organization had $7,964,369 in expenses, of which $6,562,837 was allocated for salaries and benefits. The organization ended the fiscal year with a deficit of $419,205 and net assets of $5,660,191. 6

Notable funders include the Bezos Family Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Gates Family Foundation, and the Poynter-Koch Media Fellowship. 7

Priority Issues

Chalkbeat is focused on various aspects of the education system around the country, often from a left-of-center and identity politics-based perspective.


Chalkbeat covers the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on local schools. Reporters have covered issues such as how COVID relief funds are allocated, safety concerns, remote learning, and news and debates about schools reopening. 8

Diversity and Equity

In June 2020, Chalkbeat announced that it was embracing the critical race theory-inspired radical-left ideology of “antiracism” as a core value. In an update on that change a year later, Elizabeth Green, the founder of CEO, stated that there has been intensifying racial conflict and characterized the Capital Riot on January 6 as being a “white supremacist-fueled insurrection” and that racial activism has spurred a “defensive reaction” in the form of restrictions on the teaching of critical race theory in schools. 9

Chalkbeat reporting on the issue covers things such as school funding levels, police presence in schools, and debates about the use of critical race theory in schools. Chalkbeat maintains a map that tracks efforts of state governments to either ban or support critical race theory, and characterizes the controversial subject as merely being “teaching about racism and bias”10 11

Charters and Choice

Chalkbeat regularly reports on charter school developments around the country. Coverage of charter schools is mixed and is not entirely negative. 12


During the 2020 election season, Chalkbeat launched short-term initiative called Votebeat to cover elections until at least the 2022 midterm cycle. Votebeat uses an explicitly left-wing framing when reporting on electoral issues, and routinely denigrates election integrity measures. 13 A story on new laws in Arizona that instituted routine checks of voters’ citizenship status claimed that they had “uneven and discriminatory” implications, and a story on a federal court decision validating undated or incorrectly dated ballots in Pennsylvania suggested that doing otherwise would lead to “the disenfranchisement of thousands of voters.” Votebeat has continued its activity past the 2022 midterms into 2023. 14 15

 Parent Organization

In early 2023, Chalkbeat announced that it and Votebeat were becoming projects of a new umbrella entity, the Civic News Company. 16 The organization had already secured funding from several major left-of-center philanthropic institutions, including $300,000 from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and $350,000 from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 17 18 In addition, the Carnegie Corporation of New York approved another $500,000 in June 2023. 19


Elizabeth Green is the founder and CEO of Chalkbeat, which she launched in 2014. She has worked as an education reporter and her book on teacher training, Building a Better Teacher, was a New York Times bestseller. In addition to Chalkbeat, she is also the cofounder of the American Journalism Project. 20 21

Gideon Stern is the board chair at Chalkbeat and the president of the Moriah Fund, a left-of-center grantmaking organization with tens of millions of dollars which has backed a number of anti-conventional-energy initiatives in the United States. The fund also backs left-wing political causes in Israel and has funded groups affiliated with the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign. Stern is also a co-founder of the Black Voices for Black Justice Fund, which provides financial support to left-wing race activists. 22

Sarah Darville is a long-time editorial team member at Chalkbeat who became the interim editor in chief in the spring of 2023. She previously participated in a journalism fellowship sponsored by Google. Darville attended Columbia University, where she was the editor of the school’s daily newspaper and received a bachelor of arts degree in English. 23


Some observers within the left-of-center education policy sphere have criticized Chalkbeat for accepting large amounts of funds from organizations which promote certain school policy measures, such as linking test scores to teacher evaluations. Chalkbeat has responded by insisting that it maintains editorial independence and that its coverage of the policy initiatives which its funders support is not always positive. 24

In October 2021, reports emerged that the Emerson Collective, the left-of-center grantmaking organization run by Apple Inc. heir Laurene Powell Jobs, had cut funding for Chalkbeat over apparently critical coverage of a school-policy initiative promoted by the collective. However, subsequent reporting by the education media coverage analysis project About The Grade disputed this claim, noting that both the Emerson Collective and Chalkbeat had issued statements acknowledging the end of funding but not suggesting any open conflict. 25


  1. “About Chalkbeat.” Chalkbeat. Accessed July 19, 2021.
  2. Green, Elizabeth. “Why Chalkbeat Is Committing to Antiracism.” Chalkbeat. June 4, 2020.
  3. Sara Fischer. “Chalkbeat expands its coverage to include voting at the local level.” Axios. January 12, 2021. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  4. Elizabeth Green. “Introducing Civic News Company.” Chalkbeat. February 7, 2023. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  5. “Chalkbeat, Inc. Financial Statements.” PKF O’Connor Davies Accountants and Advisors. June 30, 2021. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  6. Chalkbeat, Return of an Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2020.
  7. “Our Supporters.” Chalkbeat. Accessed July 19, 2021.
  8. “Coronavirus.” Chalkbeat.Accessed July 19, 2021.
  9. Green, Elizabeth. “One Year Later: Reflecting on Our Commitment to Antiracism.” Chalkbeat, July 13, 2021.
  10. “Diversity & Equity.” Chalkbeat. Accessed July 19, 2021.
  11. Stout, Cathryn, and Gabrielle LaMarr LeMee. “MAP: Efforts to Restrict Teaching about Racism, Bias Have Multiplied.” Chalkbeat. June 9, 2021.
  12. “Charters & Choice.” Chalkbeat. Accessed July 19, 2021.
  13. Sara Fischer. “Chalkbeat expands its coverage to include voting at the local level.” Axios. January 12, 2021. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  14. Jen Fifield. “Two new Arizona laws would create regular checks on voter citizenship. Will a judge let them stand?” Votebeat. November 8, 2023. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  15. Carter Walker. “Pa. counties must accept undated, incorrectly dated mail ballots, federal court rules.” Votebeat. November 21, 2023. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  16. Elizabeth Green. “Introducing Civic News Company.” Chalkbeat. February 7, 2023. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  17. “Civic News Company.” William & Flora Hewlett Foundation. November 2, 2022. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  18. “Civic News Company.” Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. May 2022. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  19. “Carnegie Corporation of New York Board Approves 39 Grants Totaling $30,532,000.” Carnegie Corporation of New York. June 16, 2023. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  20. “Elizabeth Green Profile and Activity.” Chalkbeat. Accessed July 19, 2021.
  21. “Elizabeth Green | LinkedIn.” Accessed July 19, 2021.
  22. “Gideon Stein.” Chalkbeat. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  23. Sarah Darville. LinkedIn. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  24. Lauren Steussy. “How Chalkbeat is trying to build a bigger audience for education news.” Columbia Journalism Review. July 19, 2016. Accessed December 1, 2023.
  25. Alexander Russo. “Did the Emerson Collective really cut Chalkbeat off? A plausible narrative lacks sufficient reporting.” Kappan Online. October 11, 2021. Accessed December 1, 2023.
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: June - May
  • Tax Exemption Received: March 1, 2016

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2021 Jun Form 990 $10,569,827 $9,129,307 $7,430,342 $329,631 Y $10,356,192 $0 $5,551 $719,239
    2020 Jun Form 990 $7,445,164 $7,864,369 $6,166,474 $506,283 Y $7,314,781 $15,755 $9,520 $817,776 PDF
    2019 Jun Form 990 $6,877,978 $6,043,995 $6,188,620 $109,224 Y $6,767,283 $5,808 $1,023 $442,852 PDF
    2018 Jun Form 990 $6,667,478 $3,993,659 $5,305,081 $59,668 Y $6,553,789 $7,732 $10 $408,610 PDF
    2017 Jun Form 990 $3,685,110 $3,138,752 $2,664,373 $92,779 Y $3,580,581 $7,738 $0 $390,908
    2016 Jun Form 990 $3,357,884 $2,609,524 $2,079,093 $53,857 Y $3,265,043 $7,825 $0 $361,631 PDF
    2015 Jun Form 990EZ $0 $0 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2014 Jun Form 990EZ $0 $0 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2013 Jun Form 990EZ $0 $0 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF


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