Lyle M. Spencer established the Spencer Foundation in 1962 to investigate ways education, broadly conceived, might be improved.
The foundation received its major endowment upon Spencer's death in 1968 and began formal grant making in 1971. Since that time, it has made grants totaling over $500 million.
The foundation is intended, by Spencer's direction, to investigate ways in which education, broadly conceived, can be improved around the world. From the first, the foundation has been dedicated to the belief that research is necessary to the improvement in education. We are thus committed to supporting high-quality investigation of education through our research programs and to strengthening and renewing the educational research community through our fellowship and training programs and related activities.