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Equity Reports: Transparent Data to Spark Change

Despite major changes in DC’s education reform landscape, the black-white achievement gap remains the largest in the country. According to the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), the gap between white students’ proficiency levels and black students’ has widened since 2007 to 55 points, representing years of difference in academic achievement. A similar gap exists between Hispanic and white students, highlighting the issue that DC has struggled to provide an equitable […] Read more

How to Win the Education Talent Game

Few educators would disagree with the statement that top talent is mission critical for achieving great results for students.Yet the public education sector—school districts, charter organizations, nonprofits, intermediaries, government agencies, and foundations—chronically underinvests in developing highly effective and diverse system leaders.  With the pace of innovation increasing and complexity on the rise, why is that?  And what practical steps can organizations and leaders take to reverse the trend, build capacity, and reduce […] Read more

Paul Public Charter Builds A Pipeline with a Purpose

At Paul Public Charter School, our coaching program for Black female school leaders enhances the likelihood that our leaders embrace challenges, stay in the struggle, and positively impact our sustainability and the college and career success of our scholars.We support the coaching program and diversify the perspectives of our leaders by establishing a deep pipeline of talented leaders who come from the same communities as our scholars. Read more

Launching NewSchools Catapult: Invent 2015

At NewSchools Venture Fund, we have always had a great affection for early-stage school entrepreneurs who are (re)imagining, (re)designing, and (re)creating the student experience and we are truly excited by all the school leaders realizing these visions in schools and getting great results for students.One of the more famous early innovators, Leonardo daVinci, not only excelled at painting and sculpture, but was also skilled in science, mathematics, engineering, inventing, and architecture, among […] Read more

Educate78 Launches in Oakland

I am excited to introduce Educate78, an Oakland-based not-for-profit spin off from NewSchools Venture Fund.We chose the name “Educate78” because the city of Oakland is 78 square miles, and our mission is to ensure that every student, in every neighborhood of Oakland, has access to world-class public schools. We will do this through informed giving and strategic initiatives.The time is right to focus on Oakland. The city’s robust and vibrant community of […] Read more

A New Way to Measure How Well We Are Supporting Students

When the teachers of the year from across the country were asked in a Scholastic/Council of Great City Schools poll released recently what the biggest barriers are to their students’ academic success, it was no surprise that family stress and poverty topped the list.  Students who experience physical or emotional abuse, caregiver substance abuse or mental illness, exposure to violence, or family economic hardship can suffer from “toxic stress,” which significantly limits the […] Read more

Achievement Prep Invests in African American Male Leaders

At Achievement Prep, 22% of leadership positions in our network are held by African American men.  We hear a consistent message from our African American male leaders that they strive to be examples of positivity for our scholars, despite a pervasive public message to our children about the dubious position of African American men in our society.  These gentlemen provide our predominately African American scholar population with real and varied models of […] Read more

Innovative Schools Need a Thriving Ecosystem of Digital Tools and Services

Innovative schools working toward an expanded definition of student success – in which ALL students graduate with a mastery of academic and critical life skills to achieve their most ambitious dreams – require sophisticated tools and services to help deliver personalized learning experiences for students and effectively leverage teachers’ time and talent.  Without the latest technological innovations in education, it would not be feasible for teachers to efficiently personalize each student’s learning […] Read more

Big Takeaways from Early Pioneers of Personalized Learning

For the past four years, I’ve been lucky to have been a part of a thriving community of practice of early-adopters of blended and personalized learning in charters and districts called the Community of Innovative Practice.  This group comes together twice a year to exchange war stories, share best practices, engage in lively debate, explore new ideas and problem-solve together around this challenging work.  Much of the early work we produced together […] Read more

Summit 2015: Creative Solutions to Classroom Challenges

Across the country, we’re excited to see many schools, districts and charter organizations exploring ways of innovating in classrooms.  We’ve learned that innovation is a journey that individuals and teams take (sometimes together, sometimes separately), and the ease of that journey depends on many things (teammates, school readiness, political context, landscape, other things swirling around, chemistry, time, and so much more). At the NewSchools Summit this year, we wanted to showcase how different […] Read more