Partnering on Prep

A Toolkit for Building Strong District-Teacher Preparation Partnerships that Support a Diverse Workforce

Partnering on Prep

We’ve collected tools, stories and lessons learned to help teacher preparation programs & districts build partnerships nationwide.

As districts and teacher preparation programs seek to create an educational system that serves all students, we believe partnership work is vital. By working together, partners can ultimately ensure that a diverse workforce of teachers is prepared to provide every student with an excellent education that enables them to succeed in college, career and beyond.


In 2016, with the support of the Joyce Foundation, Education First released Ensuring High-Quality Teacher Talent, which made the case for strong, bold district-teacher preparation partnerships and provided ten recommendations for building them. The report was favorably received, and was shared and used widely by districts, teacher preparation programs, states and foundations, among others.

Since the report’s release, we’ve seen partnerships flourish nationwide. States have begun to require and incentivize partnership work. Districts and teacher preparation programs—several of which we have been working closely with—are implementing the recommendations and funders are investing in partnership models. And as these partnerships have progressed, partners have shared that they want to learn from one another in new ways. Through a series of conversations, we identified steps partners could take to implement the original ten recommendations with a focus on a diverse teacher pipeline, and through the generosity of our interviewees, collected over 50 tools from the field. This Toolkit is the result of that work.

How to Use This Toolkit

If you are interested in using the toolkit to build stronger partnerships in your community, you’re in the right place. Here are a few ways to start:

  • Complete the Self-Assessment Tool. This will help you and your partner(s) understand where your partnership is currently, and help you identify steps to move forward.
  • Browse this Website. If you’re looking to dig into a specific stage or recommendation, take a look around. For each recommendation, we’ve summarized steps you can take & highlighted a few tools to start with. If you’d like to look through all the tools, click on the Browse All Tools tab.
  • Read the Full Toolkit. For the full set of lessons learned, steps and tools, as well as ten case studies that highlight strong partnership work nationwide, download the Toolkit in PDF format.

Click to download the Toolkit and Self-Assessment

What’s next? Action steps to help you benefit from our expertise:

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