Informed perspective on what helps nonprofit organizations succeed and what they need to do to grow and sustain

We support local, state and national nonprofits, including advocacy organizations, charter school networks, membership associations and technical assistance providers–to design and implement strategies, policies and programs to increase their impact. We believe that organizations need a strong guiding purpose and a clear theory of action, coupled with strategies and commitments to become people-focused, coherent and equitable organizations. Education First partners with nonprofit organizations across all of our Solutions and Strategies to facilitate strategic planning, align staffing, budget and fundraising plans to your mission and strategy, consider growth options and design and launch new initiatives.

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Recent clients

Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)

Education First has been a key leader of one of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) academics and equity initiatives. CCSSO runs the IM-PD Network that supports more than a dozen states to increase the number of districts selecting high-quality, standards aligned instructional materials and increase the number of pre-service and in-service teachers receiving curriculum-based high-quality professional learning. Education First provides thought partnership and coaching to state leaders in Arkansas, Delaware and Maryland, resulting in significant strides in spurring the adoption and use of great materials, especially in classrooms serving students of color and students experiencing poverty.

Equal Opportunity Schools

Education First partnered with Equal Opportunity Schools (EOS) to refine the organization’s strategic priorities and learning agenda to set the stage for continued innovation, growth, learning and impact towards removing barriers to students’ access to rigorous coursework.

Ohio Excels

We partnered with Ohio Excels to gain understanding and develop actionable recommendations—at the state and regional levels—to boost the numbers of such students returning to campus to finish their credentials/degrees, or coming to campus for the first time.

Policy Innovators in Education (PIE) Network

We developed a three-year strategic plan with the Policy Innovators in Education (PIE) Network (PIE Network), which included deep engagement with all staff and the Board, network members and funders. The plan articulated significant growth in services and policy generation for members and how the staff and fundraising could grow as well. When COVID closed schools, PIE was able to accelerate the plan implementation and accomplished the plan’s goals in just two years. We refreshed the strategy with PIE in 2022 to continue the network’s strong momentum.

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