Sandy Springs Education Force has transitioned three times in response to the community’s needs since its original inception. In 1990, President George H. Bush challenged the nation to improve education by establishing a goal oriented program, “Education 2000”. In support of this challenge, Governor Zell Miller convened an Education Conference to encourage Georgians to find ways to achieve those goals in their own communities. Four community leaders attended the conference and became energized to form the Greater North Fulton Education 2000, which was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) in 1993. The organization worked with State Senator Sallie Newbill to create grass roots projects targeted specifically to meet the needs of public school students, especially those deemed economically disadvantaged. They later partnered with Greater North Fulton Chamber of Commerce and served as its Education Committee. When the Chamber re-organized, the nonprofit continued independently to serve the community with programs and projects for at-risk students, changing its name to Community Education Force (CEF). During that time, CEF received numerous awards by county and state organizations lauding its work in assisting students to succeed in school and graduate.
In 2004, the leaders of CEF were solicited to take on other responsibilities in the community, and CEF became temporarily dormant. Then, in September 2008, the nonprofit received a multiyear funding commitment from Couchman-Noble Foundation to once again pursue its mission. During the four year dormancy, Sandy Springs became a city, and thus Community Education Force (CEF) officially became Sandy Springs Education Force (SSEF).
The city of Sandy Springs is the 9th most affluent city in the U.S., yet almost 60% of our public school students are economically disadvantaged. Today, SSEF has an Executive Director, a Communication Director, a twenty-one member board, and implements collaborative, results-driven programs in Sandy Springs' public schools impacting thousands of our most at-risk students as well as the general public school population. SSEF’s programs have demonstrated success in improving academic performance and attendance rates, as well as successfully moving students into post-secondary institutions. The nonprofit has been honored with numerous awards and recognitions for its efforts.