Rogers Family Foundation (RFF), in partnership with EDUCAUSE’s Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC), and local philanthropic partners, offers this Grant Description and Application Process to any qualified Oakland public school committed to creating and launching a breakthrough model of schooling. This program, NGLC in Oakland, is tiered into two levels: Planning Grants and Launch Grants, totaling $1.92M for schools through June 2017. Additionally, winning sites will have access to on-going support, including the chance to engage with peer schools across the country in a high-visibility initiative to redesign and invigorate public education..

What does it mean to plan and launch a breakthrough school?

Once selected, school grantees will participate in a set of activities aimed at catalyzing their new or redesigned public K-12 school that is organized around principles of personalized, blended, and competency-based learning (see the Common Expectations for a NextGen School).

The Launch Grant application process, with awards from $300k-400k per school, is now open at here.

All grantees are expected to:
  • Create and inform operating conditions and the innovation climate required to enable the successful launch and sustainability of schools.
  • Open school and classroom doors to partners eager to help, contribute, and learn from the school and its internal stakeholders.
  • Participate in and contribute to both Oakland and national cohorts of schools, working together as a community to design, launch and support breakthrough school models.
The Planning Grant application was due January 31st, 2015: RFF awarded 10 $60k-$100k planning grants to schools.

•  ASCEND
•  Envision Academy
•  Garfield Elementary
•  La Escuelita
•  Lighthouse II
•  Redwood Heights Elementary

•  Roosevelt Middle School

•  Unity Middle School

•  Urban Montessori Charter School

•  Urban Promise Academy

These schools serve roughly 3,000 students, 80 percent of whom receive free or reduced-price lunch, and nearly 40 percent are English Language Learners. RFF and the schools themselves will use a range of measures to evaluate grantee schools’ ability to “break through” and achieve several goals, including learning growth of 1.5 years in Math and English, and a clear demonstration of college readiness based on California’s Early Assessment Program performance.

This grant award announcement comes after Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) named Oakland one of its six Regional Funds for Breakthrough Schools partnership organizations across the U.S. to serve as hubs of education innovation. The Rogers Family Foundation, which was tapped to lead the initiative’s design and launch locally, is well positioned to drive the work. The organization has piloted blended learning in eight Oakland public schools over the last two and a half years. Those pilot programs aimed to improve student achievement and teacher effectiveness by supporting use of technology in ways that rethought teaching and learning.