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Nine Questions for Evaluating Education Innovation

Defining a rubric to set clear expectations for educators and entrepreneurs alike“Alive in the Swamp” sounds like a cheesy survival horror flick. But it’s also an apt description for those entrepreneurs and educators slogging their way through edtech jungle, trying to figure out how to best build, deploy and assess technology for the classroom.It’s also the title of a new report from Nesta and NewSchools Venture Fund, which offers a nine-point rubric to […] Read more

NewSchools Seed Fund: Writing a new chapter for ed-tech startups

The writing is on the chalkboard: Old-school education is failing, but ed-tech is rising to the head of the class.No small player in ed-tech’s boom is NewSchools Venture Fund, an Oakland-based nonprofit with a particular focus on underserved communities. NewSchools’ board includes the likes of venture capitalists Brook Byers and John Doerr as well as Laurene Powell Jobs.As teachers, administrators and school districts look for help against tight funding and rising competition, NewSchools has funded ventures such as Khan […] Read more

Take The Money Or Go It Alone?

Bringing together two sides of the funding debate – to take the VC money or go it alone – EdSurge’s Betsy Corcoran facilitated a lively discussion Thursday night between co-founder of Wikispaces and bootstraper extraordinaire James Byers, and Jenifer Carolan, managing partner of NewSchools Venture Seed Fund. The audience, filled with both established and newbie edtech entrepreneurs, listened to the industry experts share their thoughts, beliefs, and advice on how to travel the funding […] Read more

Honest report on teacher prep got a bad rap: Criticism of group was unfair and based on fallacies — and it’s coming mainly from education schools

As a former teacher, school administrator and a current member of the National Council on Teacher Quality advisory board, I was not surprised to see criticism arise over a new NCTQ report, rating the effectiveness of teacher preparation schools and programs across the country. The report is controversial; criticism is fair play. What is not fair play is criticism built on false assertions and outdated facts. An opinion piece in last Sunday’s […] Read more

Unlocking Gaming Potential: Ted Mitchell on the NewSchools Venture Fund/Zynga.org Learning Games Accelerator

What is important when it comes to forming partnerships with tech organizations? How do organizations approach corporations and other organizations when partnering on a new project? Learn from the NewSchools Venture Fund/Zynga.org Learning Games Accelerator. Earlier this year, NewSchools Venture Fund and Zynga.org announced a partnership to form a learning games accelerator. Ted Mitchell, CEO of NewSchools Venture Fund, discusses the partnership, the accelerator, and what nonprofits should consider when embarking on collaborations with other organizations. Read more