Follow the money and wake up (or there's gonna be a shakeup)
My colleague, Dr. John Nash, sent me two messages recently that I think are worth some attention. Like John, I agree that university educational leadership programs need to wake up to the implications of these funding decisions. Your thoughts?
The Prudential Foundation gave $700,000 to New Leaders for New Schools for general operating support and to help expand the group's regional work in Newark, New Jersey.\n
I'd like to point out that the grant for New Leaders from Prudential was for general operating support!!! Not for any particular part of their program just to keep the lights on!\n
Prudential also gave $300,000 to Teach for America, which will use the funds to support its School Leadership Initiative and increase the number of alumni who enter school leadership positions in low-income communities,\n
TFA is going to run its own leadership program. Again, we're not needed.\n
These are two more big shots across the bow for our program, and all others in the country. Money is flowing like crazy to "innovative" programs like these and we have an opportunity to cherry pick the parts that a) we think are effective, and b) DE [the Iowa Department of Education] won't choke on and then use our new profile/program as a way to obtain external funds, such as those from foundations like Prudential, to expand and have greater impact.\n
Or we can wait for New Leaders, TFA, and others to show up and just take all our students.\n
Full story here: http://foundationcenter.org/pnd/news/story.jhtml?id=306900016\n
The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation has announced a $20 million grant to the Broad Center for the Management of School Systems to continue recruiting, training, placing, and supporting school district leaders nationwide. See the full story here.\n
I'll note that the article states the gift comes on the heels of a favorable evaluation of the Broad Center's superintendent training program.\n
What the article doesn't note is that the evaluation was conducted internally by the Broad Center, which Dianne Ravitch has taken exception to.\n
Setting aside for the moment whether the evaluation was any good (and it probably was), the big point is this: This is $20 million for a CAS-like program that is not university-based. [CAS is our superintendent preparation program]\n
In sum, in the last six weeks:\n
- KIPP got $50M to groom their own principals from Obama.\n
- New Leaders for New Schools got $700K from Prudential to groom their own principals.\n
- TFA got $50M from Obama to expand and $300K from Prudential to groom their own principals.\n
- Broad got $20M from their rich parent foundation to groom superintendents "their" way.\n
That's $121 million given away in the last 6 weeks.\n
\nAnd we sit worrying if the DE [Iowa Department of Education] will let us be innovative. Yikes.
Image credit: punch
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Finalist: Greater Commons - Todd McLeod
Greater Commons, founded by Todd McLeod and Andrew Cull, is an organization that helps people live happier, more successful and fulfilling lives through agile learning. The current education system is inefficient and exclusionary, in which many students who end up earning a degree, if at all, enter a career not related to their field of study. Greater Commons solves this problem and gap in post-high school secondary education in a variety of ways. Passionately and diligently, Great Commons helps others obtain skills, knowledge, wisdom, motivation, and inspiration so that they may live better lives.
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PeerForward is an organization dedicated to increasing the education and career success rates of students in low-income schools and communities by mobilizing the power of positive peer influence. PeerForward works with partner schools to select influential students as a part of a team, systemizing the "peer effect." Research in the fields of sociology of schools, social-emotional learning, adult-youth partnerships, and civic education demonstrates that students can have a positive effect on the academic outcomes of their peers. PeerForward is unique through its systemic solutions to post-secondary education.
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Cogniss combines technology and best practice knowledge to enable anyone to innovate and share solutions that advance lifelong learning. Cogniss is the only platform to integrate neuroscience, through which it solves the problem of access by providing a low-code platform that enables both developers and non-developers to build sophisticated education apps fast, and at a much lower cost. It addresses the uneven quality of edtech solutions by embedding research-based learning design into its software. App creators can choose from a rich set of artificial intelligence, game, social and data analytics, and gamification to build their perfect customized solution.
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Practera's mission is to create a world where everyone can learn through experience. Today's workplaces are increasingly dynamic and diverse, however, costly and time-consuming experiential learning is not always able to offer the right opportunities at scale. Many students graduate without developing the essential skills for their chosen career. Practera's team of educators and technologists see this problem as an opportunity to transform the educational experience landscape, through a CPL pedagogical framework and opportunities to apply students' strengths through active feedback.
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