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The NewSchools Notebook: tech, teaching, and inspiration

At NewSchools, we are constantly being exposed to new ideas in education from a variety of sources. Given that we invest in technologies that spread knowledge and education to all, I wanted to start a blog series passing on some of the quotes and intellectual nuggets I encounter to the world. Big Ideas from the week: Education technology is not a zero sum game. When movies came out, live theater attendance did […] Read more

Charter Board Partners is Building Awareness that Diverse Charter Boards are Better Boards

Raël N. James, CBP’s recruiting director is leading a national awareness effort on board diversity based on our belief that diverse boards are better boards. Board member Michael Pickrum is helping us identify & connect with high profile people of color to encourage them to join boards & support charters. In the past year, our DC board candidate network increased from 26% to 36% people of color, & 54% that we matched to boards were people of color. Read more

“Read, Write, Code” say CodeHS founders and winners of NBC Innovation challenge

In my last year at Stanford I took a class that made me wish I could start all over called CS 106a, Programming Methodology. I learned to code by guiding a robot icon through a grid, and eventually I programmed basic games like hangman and breakout (we even made a rudimentary social network!). I have two main takeaways from the course:  1. I gained a new understanding of the logic behind machines, […] Read more

Axis Talent Partners Pledge to Diversity

As education practitioners, our team has long been fueled by a deep commitment to diversity & equity, something we had yet to articulate publicly. Inspired by the conversation at Summit 2014, we’ve reflected this in our values statement (link). We’re proud to work with smaller districts & independent charter schools throughout the country identifying and hiring talented leaders of color. We’ll continue introducing our clients to candidates who represent diversity on multiple levels. Read more

NewSchools Invests in Accelerator to Elevate Leaders of Color

It is often stated that education is the civil rights issue of our time. While there are many aspects related to equity in education that need to be addressed, a particular area of concern for NewSchools is the lack of racial diversity in leadership roles representing the very communities we serve. In a step toward change, NewSchools is pleased to be working with Carmita Vaughan on a leadership accelerator to identify, train and provide career counsel to emerging leaders of color in the education reform movement. Read more

GREAT Act: More Reality Needed in Teaching… and Op-Eds

We have a serious problem in the United States: when it comes to training teachers, we are somewhere between mediocre to terrible. And we do a particularly bad job of training effective teachers to serve in our highest-need areas (particularly areas of poverty) and our hardest to staff subjects. At NewSchools Venture Fund, we’ve made no secret of our strong support for proposed federal legislation, the GREAT Teachers and Principals Act (S. 1052 and H.R. 2196), that’s designed to address this problem. The GREAT Act is an entirely voluntary, state-based program that – if enacted – is designed to create new teacher and principal training academies that will embrace three core principles. Read more