The mission of AEF is to administer programs that identify, develop and celebrate excellence in Pre-K through 12th grade Arizona public education through business and community partnerships.
- Administer high quality, well-known and sought-after programs that develop and celebrate excellence in Arizona’s students, teachers, schools, and school leaders.
- Facilitate sharing of best practices among educators to promote excellence in education.
- Foster partnerships and raise awareness about AEF™ and its mission among educators, government offices, the private sector and the public to benefit the educational community.
AEF was founded in 1983. The Foundation’s founders include former State Superintendent of Public Instruction Carolyn Warner, Basha’s CEO and education advocate Eddie Basha, and retired director of public relations for The Arizona Republic, Bill Shover.
As a private, non-profit corporation, the current Foundation Board is comprised of business, education and community leaders. The diversity and expertise of the AEF board bring about a full partnership between the business and the educational communities.
Through its Arizona Teacher of the Year Program, A+ School of Excellence Program, State Spelling Bee, Polly Rosenbaum Writing Contest, Principals’ Leadership Academy, Take Your Legislator to School initiative, and UnitED program, AEF identifies, recognizes and rewards many great schools, many great leaders, many great teachers and many great students.
These statewide programs are built to enhance the capabilities of Arizona’s schools, strengthen the teaching profession, design high quality curricula, stimulate high student achievement, and celebrate successes in pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade public education in Arizona.