Elevate 215 Makes $250,000 in Planning Grants to Five Schools that are ‘Beating the Odds’ for Their Students
The new and innovative grants will support schools to identify a key area of practice that can help them accelerate student outcomes
Philadelphia, PA – Elevate 215 announced today its approval of a first round of ‘Beat the Odds’ Planning Grants to a group of five public district and public charter schools that are “Beating the Odds” for their students who are making strong academic progress each year. The new grants, totaling $250,000, will help these schools build on their track record of success and continue to elevate performance and expand their impact to even more students.
A $50,000 grant will be made to support a six-month planning process for each school to identify areas of research-based practice they can implement to dramatically increase student outcomes. The five schools receiving planning grants include: Alliance For Progress Charter School (K-8), Juniata Park Academy (K-8), Middle Years Alternative (MYA) School (5-8), Morton McMichael School (Pre-K-8), Pan American Academy Charter School (K-8).
The schools identified collectively serve 2,875 students, of whom 90% are Black or Latino/a and 85% of whom are low-income. Cohort 1 grantees will have the opportunity to apply for grants of up to $825,000 each over three or four years, with more than $4 million in implementation grants available once plans are developed to help move their schools from good to great.
Elevate 215 used research on 10 years of student outcomes data in public elementary and middle schools to identify Philadelphia schools serving high need populations whose students consistently “Beat the Odds” and achieved greater growth than their local and national peers during this span. To learn more about this Beat the Odds methodology, see here.
While this research provides a baseline for the first Beat the Odds schools, Elevate 215 will work in the coming years to use different forms of data and information to offer opportunities to grow and expand programs that appear to be beating the odds across all grade levels and school types.
All schools will have access to opportunities to collaborate as part of a cohort model, where they will meet periodically to work with each other, share best practices, and learn from other exemplar schools on how to improve their practice to impact student outcomes and experiences. Stronger outcomes in these schools will directly benefit thousands of current and future enrolled students while generating proof points that other schools can replicate, creating the potential for system-wide impact.
All schools receiving planning grants will have six months to plan alongside technical assistance experts in order to create a proposal for implementation. Each school will have the opportunity to apply for an implementation grant to Elevate 215 in Spring 2023. Elevate 215 will also continue to engage with and consider other schools that data shows are beating the odds for their students who may be interested or ready for an implementation grant at that time.
“Our goal is for this to lay the groundwork for how we support schools in the years to come,” added Dr. Holland. “But it starts with listening and engaging with educators, students, and school staff to determine what they actually need. That is why we are starting with these planning grants, and believe this first cohort will start to build momentum for our City to improve student outcomes in the coming years.”
As a part of its new five-year plan, Elevate 215 plans to fund at least one cohort of beat the odds schools every year for the next five years, with a goal of supporting 25,000 students from underserved regions and different school sectors across the city.