Funding, Grants & Awards

Chicago Schools Win Personalized Learning Grants

Seven Chicago Public Schools (CPS) will receive $280,000 each as part of the Breakthrough Schools Chicago program.

The Breakthrough Schools Chicago program is a 10-month grant competition that supports local educators as they develop and implement whole-school personalized learning approaches. The program is a local-national partnership, led by LEAP Innovations and Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC). LEAP Innovations is a Chicago-based nonprofit organization "working to transform learning by connecting education and innovation for teachers and students," and the NGLC is an initiative of Educause.

During the first phase of the program, educators from 15 Chicago area schools began the process of designing and piloting whole-school personalized learning models intended to meet the needs of their students. Each participating school received $30,000 in planning grant funds, monthly workshops, more than 150 hours of coaching and site visits to schools that have already implemented personalized learning.

During the second phase, the schools developed grant proposals for implementation of their new learning models, based on their learning from phase one. A panel of experts evaluated the proposals and conducted on-site visits before selecting the four elementary and three high schools that won the implementation grants.

The seven schools that won the 2016 Breakthrough Schools Chicago grants include:

Breakthrough Schools Chicago is one of seven regional funds of Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC). Additional funding for the Chicago program comes from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Chicago Public Education Fund, IMC Financial Markets, The Joyce Foundation and Northern Trust.

This is the second year of the Breakthrough Schools Chicago program. In the first year, seven schools received support and $100,000 planning grants, and five of those schools received $263,000 in additional implementation grants.

Further information about the Breakthrough Schools Chicago program can be found on the LEAP Innovations site.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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