‘Toxic stress’ in the classroom: How a public health approach could help

The Washington Post, June 2016

Fall 2016 will see the launch of The Primary School in East Palo Alto, Calif., founded by Priscilla Chan, a pediatrician, and her husband Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook; it will provide education, dental, and health services for K-12 students through graduation.

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Priscilla Chan's The Primary School Is A Visionary Project

Bustle, December 2015

Education is incredibly important to Priscilla Chan, a pediatrician and the wife of Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Chan told TODAY that her parents fled their home country hoping to find a better future, but, unfortunately, they didn't understand the education system in the United States. This meant her mother was stuck working two jobs and Chan had to translate for her grandparents, who only spoke Cantonese. Now, Chan donates millions to schools in California. In October, she and Zuckerberg announced The Primary School, a nonprofit institution that will provide education and health care, side by side, to its K-12 students, according to CNN. Chan's vision for The Primary School is a creative and brilliant idea to improve education.

Priscilla Chan, in rare interview, tells how her goals with Mark Zuckerberg are shaped by personal story

The Mercury News, April 2016

Priscilla Chan remembers seeing blood all over the boy’s face, a sign he had gotten jumped in his own neighborhood. For the first time, just looking at someone else hurt.

Chan, then a Harvard student and now a Bay Area philanthropist, pediatrician, mother and wife of Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg, was mentoring the child in an after-school program meant to quell gang violence in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood. Yet stellar tutoring and field trips to football fields and skating rinks couldn’t cure the student’s woes.

“I realized that my homework help was going to completely be futile if these kids couldn’t be healthy, safe and happy in the place that they lived,” a teary-eyed Chan told this newspaper in a rare interview. “That really drives a lot of what I decided to do in my life and career.”

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Priscilla Chan is running one of the most ambitious philanthropies in the world

Recode, July 2017

Part of the challenge is that Chan is virtually a first-time manager. When she isn’t at CZI, she’s usually working at The Primary School, a school in East Palo Alto she founded and opened in 2016 that’s focused on combining student health care and education into one organization. It’s also funded by CZI, though it operates independently. Chan is CEO, and meets regularly with teachers and the school’s leadership staff, and at the moment she’s focused on expanding the school’s model to other communities, sources say. While she makes major decisions for The Primary School alongside President and COO Meredith Liu, Liu handles most of the day-to-day operations.

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CZI’s Big Bet on Early Childhood Learning Has a Lot in Common with Its Other Ed Work

Inside Philanthropy, March 2018

It's not surprising to see CZI gravitate to early education. Its interest here is inspired in part by Priscilla Chan’s work in founding the Primary School, a new school based in East Palo Alto that integrates health and education to improve outcomes for underserved children. The model allows kids to attend full-time starting at age three.

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Visionary of the Year winners make impressive progress

San Francisco Chronicle, November 2017

As Chan was receiving her Visionary of the Year award in April, the Primary School in East Palo Alto was in its first year with 51 students, all 4 years old and from low-income families. The school’s approach is to recognize and help students overcome obstacles to their scholastic readiness.

“Parents at our schools have many commitments and challenges — many jobs, long commutes, language barriers — but when presented with an opportunity to engage deeply around their children’s needs and goals as parents, they showed up,” Chan wrote in response to my email question. “We are so proud that our parent program engagement was consistently greater than 90 percent for our first year. Our group coaching model enabled parents to support each other to learn how to drive, repair each other’s homes, complete immigration paperwork, make a plan around their child’s medical needs, understand their child’s learning goals and more.”

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Exclusive: How Zuckerberg and Chan’s new private school mixes health care and education

The Mercury News, December 2016

Toothaches or asthma can cloud the minds of children who are eager to learn, but a new private school started by Dr. Priscilla Chan and her husband, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, might be just what the doctor ordered.

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At the Primary School, funded with Zuckerberg fortune, education will start before birth

The Washington Post, December 2015

When the doors open in August to her private school for poor children in East Palo Alto, Calif., Priscilla Chan will have a ready-made laboratory to test the best ways to combat the effects of poverty on young minds.

Chan and her husband, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, are funding the Primary School to educate low-income children from pre-kindergarten through 8th grade while also providing comprehensive health care to students and their families, all free of charge.

The school will start with about 40 pre-school students in the first year, gradually adding grades until it is fully built with a capacity of about 700 children and their families.

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Facebook’s Zuckerberg, wife Chan to start private East Palo Alto school

The Mercury News, October 2015

Hoping to counter poverty’s toll on children, Priscilla Chan and her husband, Facebook mogul Mark Zuckerberg, are launching what’s certain to become a multimillion-dollar project: a private comprehensive preschool and K-8 school, linked to health services for children and families in East Palo Alto.

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Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan to Open Private School for Low-Income Kids

EdWeek, November 2015

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, pediatrician Priscilla Chan, plan to start a private school in East Palo Alto, Calif., for low-income students. 

But the K-8 school will focus on more than academics—it will also help provide medical, dental, and mental health services for both students and their families through partnerships with nearby health centers, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

Chan, who is also a former elementary teacher, seems to be the one driving the project.

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East Palo Alto mayor celebrates 'city on the move'

Palo Alto Weekly, November 2017

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Facebook 101: Priscilla Chan to Head New Palo Alto Private School

NBC News, October 2015

The Primary School will serve the community's "highest-need children" from preschool through 12th grade and cost nothing to attend. According to its website, it will differ from traditional schools by offering "deeply integrated health services" and stressing parental involvement.

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How will Mark Zuckerberg's new school challenge education?

The Christian Science Monitor, October 2015

The Primary School, spearheaded by Mark Zuckerberg's wife Priscilla Chan, is designed to embrace a holistic perspective on education with its combination of health care services and early childhood programming. 

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