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Bill Gates’ charitable organization has given $44 million to outside groups over the past two years in an effort to help shape individual states’ education plans, according to an analysis by The Associated Press.

The spending by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation went to research supportive of Gates’ interests, bought positive media coverage and helped give the organization a say in Tennessee’s new education framework, according to the AP story.

The article goes on to state the following:

The spending began after then-President Obama signed into law the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in 2015.

That measure allowed states to write the frameworks for their own education systems, and receive federal funding for sticking to those frameworks. But it also required a set of academic standards, which for most states is Common Core.

Gates has been a vocal advocate for Common Core standards, and, according to the AP, has sought to promote those standards as states work to write their education plans.

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