100Kin10 is charting a course to train and retain 100,000 excellent STEM teachers. But we’re not doing it alone. We’re innovating a networked model for social change that is inspiring hundreds of likely and unlikely allies to join in, make commitments, collaborate, learn from one another, and jointly solve the big challenges that have long stood in the way of our shared progress. We do three things to ensure that America’s classrooms are equipped with 100,000 excellent STEM teachers by 2021:
By the end of our first year, already with a network 100 partners strong, it became clear that getting strong organizations to make strong commitments would not in and of itself yield 100,000 new, excellent STEM teachers. So 100Kin10 began experimenting with a range of supports to help partners succeed at their commitments, providing partners opportunities to collaborate, draw on expert research and learning, and access resources.
Read more about how 100Kin10 supports partners to collaborate, learn, and access resources.
Partners gather regularly throughout the year — in-person and virtually — to keep a pulse on what’s current, learn from each other, and create the context for serendipitous connections.
100Kin10 also facilitates deeper connections by awarding small collaboration grants that give partners ready access to the funds they need to meet up in person, explore an idea, tackle a problem, or sketch out a project to advance their work. So far, over 90 partners have accessed more than $270,000 in small collaboration funds to enable in-person learning and collaboration.
“Participating in the 100Kin10 movement has enabled the Dana Center to work with organizations that share our mission to tackle one of the grand challenges of our generation: improving STEM learning outcomes for our nation’s youth. 100Kin10 has been a source of inspiration and a wealth of great ideas for improving our work.”
Supported by a small grant from 100Kin10 in 2015, thirteen 100Kin10 partners came together on a messaging research project for the effective recruitment and retention of excellent teachers. The diverse group includes the New Teacher Center, Urban Teachers, Loyola Marymount University, the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future (NCTAF), and others, and is led by Project Tomorrow. But the research initiative didn't start there. The project was spurred by an initial small collaboration grant between Project Tomorrow and NCTAF and expanded from there after the 2015 100Kin10 Annual Summit, where partners were able to effectively showcase their work to draw in additional support.
Together, the group is poised to create more sophisticated communication campaigns that increase the number of highly-qualified STEM teachers.
With our birds-eye view, 100Kin10 identifies opportunities for partners to access best practices, learn from and with one another, experiment with emerging strategies, and collaboratively design new solutions to overcome big challenges.
Our Annual Partner Survey is a vehicle for broad information gathering across our network, and we actively cultivate focused learning communities to address key research and innovation opportunities identified through the survey and our work mapping the grand challenges.
“The California State University’s partnership with 100Kin10 has been instrumental to our success in preparing new teachers for excellence with the Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards. Collaboration with other network members has been a significant asset in our planning, evaluating, and disseminating effective strategies addressing the new standards”
The annual shared Measures R&D Survey gathers data about the six stages of a teacher’s professional life: recruitment, preparation, hiring, induction, development, and advancement. The survey was co-designed by more than 40 partners, reviewed by more than 100, and yields, comparative information about the strategy, context, practices, research, and outcomes of each partner organization. It assembles data from all 100Kin10 partners and opens up myriad opportunities for learning and improvement.
Since launching the survey in 2014, we have collected two years of data, resulting in a strong baseline from which we can build future research, learning, and improvement efforts. Already, the data contributed significantly to the identification of a set of challenge areas that impede progress toward our shared goal of 100,000 excellent STEM teachers, which when completed will be used to guide the network’s R&D agenda.
The Funders’ Collaborative serves as a marketplace that creates knowledge, hones strategy, and enables critical conversation in addition to providing an efficient matchmaking service connecting funders and partners.
100Kin10 funder office hours, virtual pitch sessions, and funding competitions contribute to a growing suite of professional services available to partners, yielding better results for the field.
“We have found tremendous value in being part of 100Kin10 and fully believe it has improved our access to the best organizations doing the most effective work in the STEM teacher space, while also positively challenging the way we think about investing our resources to best meet the needs of teachers and ultimately their students.”
100Kin10 funding partner Carnegie Corporation of New York sponsored a special funding opportunity in the summer of 2015 to support partners as they developed strategies to communicate the value of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) to parents and teachers. Partners designed solutions using a set of messages developed and dial-tested by Dr. Drew Westen through the co-investment of over 20 partners, spurred by a 100Kin10 Solution Lab. Through the competition, Carnegie Corporation awarded $225,000 in grants. This was one of four targeted funding competitions made available by seven 100Kin10 funders and resulting in nearly $2 million in support for partners since 2014.
By mid-2013, 100Kin10 again noted that this approach — getting strong organizations to make strong commitments and supporting them with a suite of innovative opportunities to collaborate, learn, and access resources — was insufficient. Major challenges remained unaddressed, many simply too big for any one organization to solve on its own. To tackle those system-level challenges, 100Kin10 began to innovate models to catalyze collective action to address large-scale shared challenges.
Moreover, we realized the critical need to identify and map these big, systemic challenges in order to deliberately and strategically address them. Since early 2015, 100Kin10, working with partners, teachers, and other sector leaders, is "mapping the waterfront" to identify these grand challenges.
From there, the network can be more deliberate and strategic about how to overcome the barriers that stand in the way of meeting our ten year goal, so that when we reach it, we won't have to start the clock all over again.
One key way we do this is through a Solution Lab: a forum for partners to co-create and co-fund initiatives to solve for specific challenges facing multiple organizations in the field. To date, we have run two Solution Labs: one on STEM teacher recruitment and the other on change management for college- and career-ready standards; we are currently in the middle of our third lab on strategically responding to the Every Student Succeeds Act.
A second key tactic is the 100Kin10 Fellowship, a six-month collaborative program dedicated to designing solutions that address the most pressing challenges to training and retaining excellent STEM teachers. Our first Fellowship focused on increasing access to engineering in K-12 spaces; our second fellowship is currently underway, with a focus on proving educators with the tools and strategies to implement active STEM learning in PK-3 classrooms.
Partners have collectively invested nearly $700,000 to bring collective solutions to life.
“No one organization or sector is going to be the solution to advancing STEM teaching and learning in the United States. Rather, it will be those organizations that best harness the collective power of many to drive forward genuine, evidence-based impact. 100Kin10 is a stellar example of one such organization.”
In March 2014 — realizing that this was a problem that was bigger than what any one organization could solve on their own — 100Kin10 partners gathered in New York City to workshop the best way to support teachers, parents, and students through the transition to more challenging academic standards. In addition to the very important programmatic and policy supports needed, partners recognized the critical need to manage the transition itself with the care required of such a big change. To do that effectively, we need to engage with teachers, parents, and students, listen to their concerns, and explain why this change matters and what it means for their real, lived experience.
In response to this, over 20 100Kin10 partners and allies collectively engaged Dr. Drew Westen — a professor at Emory University and an internationally renowned expert on the intersection of neuroscience, psychology, and communications — to develop specific messages that allow us to meet teachers and parents where they’re at, acknowledge the challenges many have experienced in their experience with the Common Core and other new standards, and then illustrate the powerful potential of college- and career-ready standards to provide our kids with more meaningful learning experiences and better chances to grow into contributing citizens with a range of family-supporting and fulfilling career opportunities.
In January 2016, we released Plagiarize This: A user friendly guide to talking about college- and career-ready standards with just about anyone, a practical toolkit that helps partners use the field-tested messages in their work.