View our resources for: Effective Organizations and Investments

Improving Early Math Instruction and Outcomes:

To help grantees, educators, policymakers and colleague foundation leaders understand ways to create a strong start in math for early learners, the Heising‐Simons Foundation asked Education First to profile noteworthy early math efforts already underway and identify implications for change...
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Parent Engagement and Early Math:

The Heising‐Simons Foundation is especially interested in the role parents and family members can play as partners with educators to boost math outcomes for children aged 3–8, and it asked Education First to learn more. We reviewed existing efforts and...
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Improving Early Math Instruction and Outcomes:

For the Heising-Simons Foundation in 2019, Education First examined challenges and opportunities for improving early math in California and suggested steps for state and local leaders and funders could take to boost student outcomes in this early. We reviewed dozens...
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In a State of Flux, Part Two:

In partnership with the Walton Family Foundation, Education First developed a comprehensive “State of State Assessments: Part Two” report summarizing the challenges and opportunities for developing and implementing innovative summative assessment systems. The report builds on a 2018 “State of...
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Making the Most of Grantmaking

Rigorous and transparent open Request for Proposals (RFP) processes are one strategy grantmakers can use to source, vet and select high-potential grantees. Done well, RFPs can introduce funders to new ideas and grantees while fostering more equitable and effective grantmaking....
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The Current State of State Standards

Back in 2010, we joined many educators and advocates in supporting the implementation of the Common Core State Standards. We believe that these standards, which are clearer and more rigorous than nearly all other state standards, can help to set...
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Figuring Out What Works

As we’ve previously discussed, the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) presents an important opportunity for states to design education systems that meet the needs of students in their communities. But states can only take advantage of that opportunity by...
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Funder Collaborations — Flourish or Flounder?

Given the complexities of changing education systems, funders regularly collaborate to leverage their influence, channel their funding and mobilize grantees in the same direction. But many well-intentioned collaborations fall short of expectations. So what actions and approaches might lead to...
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