Our Mission & Vision

We believe that if Education First delivers consistently excellent work and builds capacity in organizations to improve and influence what matters most for student learning, then we will advance the vision of preparing all students—and particularly low-income students and students of color—for success in college, careers and life.

Our mission is to deliver exceptional ideas, experience-based solutions and results so all students—and particularly low-income students and students of color—are prepared for success in college, career and life. We envision a world in which every student is prepared to succeed—a world in which income and race no longer determine the quality of education.

We recognize that, in order to pursue this mission, we must approach the work by studying gaps and inequities, asking tough questions about structural racism and more deliberately engaging diverse voices in problem-solving. Education First has a robust Race, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (RIDE) strategy to build our staff and organizational capacity to lead on issues of equity, and to increase diversity, equity and inclusion at all levels of the firm. We also have a deep commitment to, and growing experience with, helping clients elevate, interrogate and take seriously how they pursue equity in their work. To achieve our goals, we believe intentional development work must be done at three levels: 1) with individual staff on their own implicit biases and identity development; 2) at the organizational level to analyze and redesign systems that could otherwise mirror the inequities we seek to dismantle and to nurture our inclusive, vibrant culture; and 3) with our clients to ensure they focus on equity as an integral component of their work, from the stakeholders they engage in decisionmaking to the lenses they use to analyze their challenges.


We are a for-profit professional services firm with a not-for-profit soul. We direct our time and talent to support clients that can achieve the greatest impact on education systems, teachers and students. As a professional services firm, we are nimble and responsive, while pursuing our broader agenda of more equitable and effective public education for all. We’ve defined our focus areas and services because these direct us to where we can produce the greatest impact. We’re also committed to innovation; we are constantly looking for new and better ways to serve the field. In addition to our client engagements, we also set aside resources for pro-bono work that serves the field, advances our mission and spurs innovation.



Helpful Resources

Featured Resource: Understanding Language at Stanford University

Education First helped Understanding Language—a field leader in strategies for English language learners—develop a strategy for disseminating its knowledge to more educators around the United States.

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New Blog: Getting Stuff Done

At Education First, we hold ourselves to very high standards for delivering high-quality and practical advice and materials for leading P20 education organizations and systems....
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Series: Evaluation and Support, Strategies for Success

If states and districts want new evaluation systems to improve teaching and raise student achievement, they will need to provide the right resources and supports to guide implementation. This brief introduces and sums up the series, in which we provide practical advice to help leaders develop or refine their teacher evaluation and support systems.

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Common Core State Standards & the Transformation of Professional Development

With its emphasis on content aligned to the actual expectations of colleges and employers, the Common Core State Standards can provide a foundational strategy for...
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