Learning Differences


The 1 in 5 students who learn and think differently deserve school communities that believe in their potential and are prepared to meet their needs. Students with learning differences (diagnosed or undiagnosed disabilities), especially those who are also experiencing the impacts of poverty and racism, continue to be underserved in our education system.

Research shows that the majority of students with learning differences have the potential to achieve outcomes at the same rate as their general education peers. They need access to new school models, educators with the adaptive and technical skills to create communities of belonging and provide instruction that works, and new content and tools designed for their unique needs.

Students with learning differences are entitled to a great education that allows them to thrive and excel — in and out of the classroom – and we all have the opportunity to make that possible. 

What We're Looking For

As a result of what we’ve learned and the opportunities we see for innovation, our 2024-26 strategy will be focused on two priorities: (1) integrating a focus on serving students with learning differences into NewSchools’ three primary investment areas – Innovative Schools, Learning Solutions, and Teaching Reimagined, and (2) continuing to make a small set of direct investments in critical opportunities that fall outside of these areas including:

  • Special Education Teacher Pipeline: Ideas that increase the number of highly qualified special education teachers in schools and improve retention rates by providing support throughout their careers 

  • Professional learning:  Development designed to provide school leaders and general education teachers with the skills needed to build communities of belonging and improve outcomes for students with learning differences

  • Postsecondary pathways:  Experiential learning opportunities and transition support services designed uniquely for students with learning differences as they move through high school and prepare for college and career




invested in 20 ventures


of the individuals on the leadership teams of these organizations identify as neurodiverse


students served


educators served


additional funding catalyzed by our ventures