NewSchools: Diverse Leaders Grant Program

NewSchools Venture Fund

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Predicted Deadline
The next cycle for this opportunity is predicted based on past data. If you save this grant, we’ll notify you if there are any changes.

Predicted deadline: Mar 28, 2023

Grant amount: US $150,000 - US $250,000

Fields of work: Racial / Ethnic Justice & Rights Civic Leadership Development Parental Involvement in Education

Applicant type: Individuals, Organizations

Funding uses: Project / Program, Education / Outreach, Training / Capacity Building

Location of project: United States

Location of residency: United States


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Overview:

What We Fund

We’re looking for the people with the ideas that are going to change education and open doors for all children. The call has never been more urgent to innovate — to bring new approaches and new organizations that will give every child a great chance in life. Each and every child has a fundamental right to an excellent education — one that leaves her ready to create a fulfilling life, make positive change, and help build an equitable future for everyone. Yet, too many children — especially in Black, Latino and low-income neighborhoods — don’t have access to the learning opportunities they need. If you have a plan to change that, we want to support you.

We believe the genius to create an excellent and equitable education system already exists in our nation, in our communities, and that new ideas must have the support they need to grow. That’s why NewSchools offers not just funding, but partnership and support, to innovators who seek to build strong schools and organizations dedicated to a more just future in education.

Diverse Leaders Grant Program

Diverse leadership matters. Research shows that increasing leadership diversity improves student outcomes, spurs innovation, and strengthens organizations. Yet, in a country where the majority of public school students are children of color, diversity in the field — among teachers, leaders and parent advocates — lags far behind. We’re enthusiastically committed to supporting efforts that will change that. If you’re building an organization that’s working to bring diversity to education, we can’t wait to hear from you.

In 2015, NewSchools created a fund to help close the racial leadership gap in education. We’ve invested $24.3 million in more than 85 organizations so far, working not just as funders, but as partners committed to helping leaders build powerful, sustainable organizations. Together, these ventures have supported 26,000 leaders, 71 percent of whom are Black or Latino, who collectively serve 27 million students. And the impact goes beyond the numbers, as we watch Black and Latino innovators step into their own power, realize their dreams and bring new solutions to improve education for all students.

There’s much further to go. We know we’ve only scratched the surface of the genius that exists within communities of color around this country, and we’re committed to accelerating the progress. We’ll continue to seek out organizations that recruit and support the growth of Black and Latino teachers, leaders and advocates. We’ll also continue to support ventures that serve as capacity-builders, helping education organizations adopt inclusive, equitable practices that advance the ultimate goal of improving the life outcomes of children.

We’re also changing the ways we work in order to support a group too often left out of the leadership picture: parents. Parents have not always been seen as education leaders — though few people are closer to the educational inequity in our system or have a clearer view of the change required in their schools and communities. That’s why we’re supporting efforts to empower Black and Latino parents to advocate for changes that benefit their children, and shift the culture and practices of education systems to be more equitable and inclusive.

We help organizations move from start-up to sustainability and scale. We know Black and Latino innovators don’t always get the thoughtful hearing they deserve from funders, and we’re determined to be different. Our funding provides the support early-stage entrepreneurs need to work on their idea full-time or hire staff, begin piloting and operating programs, refine their idea, and collaborate with key partners in the field. And every year, we’re increasing the financial support we provide to our ventures. We provide seed funding for new organizations as well as funding for new initiatives within established organizations, along with customized management assistance and a community of practice. 

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.

Eligibility:

  • NewSchools is committed to partnering with Learning Solutions innovators to reimagine learning and unlock better outcomes for students across the country.
  • We fund early-stage organizations and new initiatives to help us get to a more excellent and equitable education system.
    • We can grant funds through fiscal sponsors or, at times, to individuals directly, but we expect that you are working towards securing your non-profit or for-profit status. 
    • If you are a school with an idea that can be scaled to impact students beyond your school or a district with a new idea that will be implemented across your system and it is aligned with our focus areas, investment criteria and eligibility requirements then yes, please apply to this funding opportunity.
  • The early-stage organizations and new initiatives within existing organizations that we fund have a vision for scale — whether it is growing the number of people you serve, deepening the offerings you provide, or influencing the practice of others. 

Preferences:

  • While we prioritize investing in new, early-stage organizations (which are typically 0 to 2-years old), we also invest in new initiatives at existing organizations.
    • If you fall in the latter category, know that we are interested in truly new and untried efforts, not incremental improvements to your current work.

Ineligibility:

  • NewSchools does not fund 501c4s or policy-focused efforts.
  • If you are a school or school system interested in either designing and/or opening a new school in the coming school years, please do not apply to this funding opportunity.
  • If you are applying to implement a specific program or project at only your school, please do not apply to this funding opportunity. 

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This page was last reviewed May 24, 2022 and last updated May 24, 2022