Check this blog for our thoughts on timely topics and issues, and relevant resources that can inform your work right away. Send your comments, suggestions for future blogs and resources to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and let us know what you think.
Sort blog posts by:
The Critical Role of Teacher Wellbeing in Retaining Teachers of Color
[Wellbeing is] feeling a connection like you’re connected to your school, where you’re at, where you’re working. Some type of way that you understand that whatever reason you got into teaching for, you’re able to accomplish that. Teacher, (Ed First interviews 2022) In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, schools and districts nationwide are scrambling to fill classrooms in the...
Read more >Client: Chan Zuckerberg Initiative
Reshaping ecosystems of learning: Lessons for creating inclusive environments for all learners
Never before has the need for social and emotional learning been so great in our students’ classrooms. The COVID-19 pandemic was an unprecedented event that had a profound impact on all aspects of our society, particularly on the social and emotional wellbeing of both students and adults. Recent surveys indicate that 70 percent of public schools reported an increase in...
Read more >Topic: Social and Emotional LearningFocus Area: Social emotional and academic development
Innovations in Assessment: Using Equitable Design to Advance Through-Year Assessment
Current systems of summative assessment have not served the needs of all students, families and teachers. With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, school systems across the country face new assessment challenges. One promising innovation is through-year assessments. The idea is this: instead of one single, high-stakes summative assessment at the end of the year, through-year assessment systems aim to accomplish three...
Read more >Focus Area: Instructional assessment and accountability systemsService: Design for equity
Creating curriculum literate teacher candidates to support student learning
We know that teachers are grappling with unfinished learning and learning loss among their students from the past few school years. We also know that high-quality instructional materials (HQIM) are a critical component of strong, standards-aligned instruction and can support in recovering student learning. But in order to effectively understand and utilize high-quality instructional materials, teachers have to have the...
Read more >
Innovations in Assessment: A Progress Report on Five Ways to Reimagine Assessment for the Field
How important are standard assessments? It depends on who you ask. Teachers generally agree that testing is important—but also that traditional bubble-sheet exams can feel more like an interruption than a key component of inquiry-based teaching and learning. Families want to know that students are on track for college or career, but also tend to put more stock in classroom...
Read more >Focus Area: Instructional Assessment & Accountability SystemsService: Design for equity
How the word is passed: Juneteenth and the will to turn words into results
“I’m left wondering if we are all just patchworks of the stories we’ve been told.”—Clint Smith Do you remember when you were first told about slavery? What about America? I vaguely remember my first explicit lesson about either, but I do remember being in my 10th grade English class and learning about the Harlem Renaissance—a period where Black artists displayed...
Read more >
2022 SEL in Action Awardees Announced!
For the 2022–23 school year, we invited applications for the SEL in Action Awards from two applicant pools: School-based educators (including teachers, counselors, administrators and other school staff) seeking to implement SEL initiatives in classrooms or schools in the 2022–2023 school year, and District-level applicants seeking to implement SEL initiatives district-wide and/or across multiple schools within one district (including a...
Read more >Client: NoVo Foundation Topic: Social and Emotional LearningFocus Area: Social emotional and academic development
Innovating Assessments with Equity in Mind: A Tale of Five Teams
What do Spotify, Fitbit and Venmo share in common? They were created via a human-centered design¹. Soon to join that list: student assessments; that is, student assessments crafted via an equitable human-centered design. In our previous blog, “Designing for Equity: Innovative Assessments in a Post-COVID World,” we identified a reality prevalent for many educators, students and their communities: The pandemic...
Read more >Client: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Walton Family Foundation Topic: Equitable Design, Innovative AssessmentFocus Area: Effective Organizations and Investments, Instructional Assessment & Accountability SystemsService: Design for equity, Policy Solutions, Program Design and Implementation
$1.78 Million in Grants Awarded to Support the Learning of Multilingual Students in California
Grants made by the Emerging Bilingual Collaborative, a sponsored project of New Venture Fund, will help nine local education agencies support professional learning opportunities for educators serving Multilingual Learners from pre-K through Grade 3. The Emerging Bilingual Collaborative, a sponsored project of the New Venture Fund backed by a coalition of five California-based philanthropic funders, is pleased to announce $1.78...
Read more >Focus Area: Engaged Students
Meeting the Moment: What Needs to be True to Spur District Innovation
The effects of COVID-19 on our nation’s schools cannot be overstated. It has, and continues to, dramatically change how students, educators, parents and community members interact and engage with the education system. It has also affected the needs of our schools systems’ innovation leaders. Those tasked with the role of creating new solutions, school models and strategies to spur district...
Read more >