Catapult

Eligibility

To be considered for an Invent investment, applicants must:

  • Plan to launch their first or second public school (charter or district) in Fall 2021
  • Enroll students within the PK-12 grade span on a full-time basis
  • Be eligible to receive public funding.
  • Meet all six investment criteria (see below);

In addition,

Investment Criteria

The information below is a high-level overview of our six investment criteria. A more detailed version of our investment criteria can be found here.

Passionate, capable and diverse teams

We look for mission-driven, entrepreneurial leaders who show passion, integrity, and the ability to achieve outstanding results. In addition, we also look for a diverse leadership team and board with the competencies and experiences necessary to design and launch an innovative public school. Collectively, this team must bring skills and relevant backgrounds in instruction, school management and business operations, as well as an emphasis on innovation and continuous improvement. 

Engage the communities they aim to serve

The teams we support focus their efforts on serving student populations that have been traditionally underserved or overlooked. We expect teams to engage students, families and community members early and often to inform all aspects of design and planning.

Reimagine the student experience

We seek teams that have embraced an expanded definition of student success, balancing rigorous academic expectations with the mindsets, skills and habits needed for success in life. With a clear definition of student success as their guide, teams can then design a school that meets the full range of their students' needs. We believe innovation can and should take many forms, and we are open to supporting an array of approaches that combine new innovations with proven practice.  Specifically, we prioritize that:  

  • Students feel ownership of their learning and are motivated to succeed.
  • Students are able to build deep, trusting, sustained relationships with each other, their teachers and other adults who care about them.
  • Students feel they belong, can find their voices and see themselves reflected in their learning.
  • The design optimizes time, pace, instructional methods and outside experiences to enrich student learning and ensure teachers' time is spent where it matters most.
  • Technology supports learning, from instructional software that helps students master academic content, to platforms that help teachers, students and families work together to manage personalized learning plans and collaborative projects.

Demonstrate a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion

We believe teams that show a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion are better equipped to meet the needs of the students and communities they serve. We seek teams that embrace this commitment and are developing comprehensive strategies to prioritize it in their schools. 

Plan appropriately and execute effectively

We look for evidence of a comprehensive plan that includes all relevant milestones needed for a successful school launch. We also look for teams that are on track to execute that plan.

Aspire to expand their impact beyond a single school

At this stage, we require that teams have developed a reasonable school-level financial model that achieves sustainability on public funds by its fourth year of operation. We also look for teams that offer compelling ideas for expanding their impact over time.


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