Tax documents reveal that associates of Elon Musk are initiating plans to establish a new primary and secondary school in Austin, Texas, supported by an estimated $100 million contribution from the billionaire. The proposed educational institution, called The Foundation, intends to focus on teaching STEM subjects and other disciplines. The application for tax-exempt status, submitted last year, discloses key figures from Musk’s inner circle, including Jared Birchall, who oversees Musk’s family office and is affiliated with Musk’s charitable arm, Musk Foundation.
The filing indicates that the school aims to initially enroll around 50 students and gradually expand over time. Funding is expected to come from donations and tuition fees, with provisions for scholarships to support economically disadvantaged students. The long-term vision includes transforming the school into a university dedicated to providing high-level education. The Foundation has already obtained tax-exempt status, as approved by the Internal Revenue Service in March 2022.
Elon Musk has shown interest in education previously, having been involved in the creation of the Ad Astra school a decade ago at SpaceX’s California headquarters. Musk moved to Austin in 2020, and Tesla’s headquarters relocated with him in 2021. The Foundation’s filing indicates the raising of approximately $100 million in contributions since mid-2022, with notable donations from the Musk Foundation. Jared Birchall is listed as the president and trustee of the school, with other contributors including Ronald Gong and Teresa Holland of Catalyst Family Office and Steven Chidester of the law firm Withers Bergman.
The move into education follows Musk’s venture into various industries and technologies, adding another dimension to his influence beyond X, the communication platform he currently leads. The Foundation’s plan to establish an educational institution aligns with Musk’s vision for fostering academic and scientific potential within a rigorous curriculum.