NewSchools Venture Fund Announces $6 Million in Funding for Education Innovators

January 11, 2021

Opportunity for Educators Launching New Innovative Schools and Supporting Diverse Education Leaders to Receive Funding and Management Assistance

(Oakland, CA, January 12, 2021) — NewSchools Venture Fund (NewSchools) today announced $6 million in funding opportunities in two investment areas: Innovative Public Schools and Diverse Leaders. These grants will be allocated to teams of educators and entrepreneurs who are planning to open a new innovative public school or are interested in advancing Black and Latino leadership in education. In addition to funding, the selected ventures receive management assistance to take these ideas from concept to reality and participate in a community of practice with other organizations selected for funding.

NewSchools supports innovators who are reimagining learning to make sure every young person in America finishes high school prepared and inspired to create the life they want – full of opportunity, choices, connection and meaning. To reach this aspiration, students need a strong academic foundation and other important mindsets, habits and skills. 

“Our team is so excited to kick off the new year by opening these funding opportunities. After the challenges that 2020 presented in education and beyond, we must support leaders who are designing innovative learning environments to better meet the needs of students across the country,” said Frances Messano, Senior Managing Partner, NewSchools Venture Fund. “One of the most impactful ways to improve student outcomes is to increase diversity in education leadership, and this work will continue to be a significant priority for us at NewSchools. Across all of our investment areas, we want to ensure that any entrepreneur who has a bold, innovative idea can apply to access funding  and leave their mark on the education field.”

Additional information on the funding opportunities announced today:

Innovative Public Schools: 

The Innovative Public Schools investment area supports teams of educators with bold visions for new schools that will change the odds for students in communities across America. Our definition of an innovative school is broad and we know the schools each community needs won’t look the same. 

In this funding opportunity, NewSchools will invest in innovators who are designing new innovative charter or district schools that plan to launch in fall 2022. These schools will focus on an expanded definition of student success, equity and innovation, combining new ideas with proven practice. In addition, NewSchools seeks to support more Latino school leaders; expand work with school districts; and support new models that guide students through the transition from high school to employment and continued learning. 

For more information about this funding opportunity and to apply please visit:

Diverse Leaders:

The Diverse Leaders investment area works to close the racial leadership gap in education. The team invests in organizations that recruit and support the growth of Black and Latino teachers, leaders and advocates. The team also supports ventures that serve as capacity-builders, helping education organizations adopt inclusive, equitable practices that advance the ultimate goal of improving the life outcomes of children. NewSchools recently expanded the definition of diverse leaders to include a group too often left out of the leadership picture: parents. Parents have not always been seen as education leaders — though few people are closer to the educational inequity in the system or have a clearer view of the change required in their schools and communities. 

This funding opportunity will support early-stage organizations or new initiatives within existing organizations who are working to increase the percentage of education leaders who are Black or Latino, mobilize and support Black and Latino parents to advocate for changes that benefit their children, and shift the culture and practices of education organizations to be more equitable and inclusive

For more information about this funding opportunity and to apply please visit:

About NewSchools Venture Fund
NewSchools Venture Fund is a nonprofit venture philanthropy that invests in promising teams of educators and entrepreneurs with the vision and skills to reimagine learning. We help them accomplish their missions to achieve outstanding results for the students, educators and schools they serve. We are committed to helping students finish high school prepared and inspired to achieve their most ambitious dreams and plans. Through our investing, management assistance, network building and thought leadership, NewSchools helps to reimagine PreK-12 education.