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Next Generation Learning Challenges Announces $12 Million in Wave III Grants

Signaling the need for a fundamental change in the way education is designed and delivered across secondary and postsecondary institutions, NGLC announces the availability of $12 million in grants for comprehensive whole school and college models that apply technology-enabled approaches to the goal of achieving more personalized learning experiences. Funding is being provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The League for Innovation in the Community College (League) is a partner in the critically important Next Generation Learning Challenges initiative. EDUCAUSE, the League, the International Association for K12 Online Learning, and the Council of Chief State School Officers, are working to dramatically improve college readiness and completion in the United States through the applied use of technology.


Across the nation, technologically-enabled breakthrough solutions are being used to improve student success. These innovations create compelling personalized learning experiences and provide knowledge and skills for a lifetime. But they’re also isolated successes, with an impact limited to their immediate communities. By providing investment capital, NGLC seeks to identify promising innovations and create an environment for scaling them in order to reach many more students. Additionally, NGLC provides a focus on rigorous assessment and a venue for community-knowledge sharing.

The Wave III Challenge: Breakthrough Models for College Readiness and Completion

Wave III includes two separate Requests for Proposals: one directed at grades 6-12 and one directed at the postsecondary level, including two-year and four-year degree programs.

1.    NGLC’s Wave IIIa: Breakthrough School Models for College Readiness

NGLC’s vision for Wave IIIa is to identify and scale personalized, mastery-based, blended learning models. Applicants would be eligible for $150,000 planning grants and up to $300,000 in one-to-one matching funds for plan implementation. NGLC expects to make up to twenty $150,000 awards and has a pool of $3 million for the one-to-one matching funds. NGLC will be seeking both district and charter school applicants who seek to launch new blended school models.


2.    NGLC’s Wave IIIb: Breakthrough Models for College Completion.

NGLC’s vision for Wave IIIB is to spotlight innovative delivery models that generate high student outcomes at an affordable cost. Grants will identify innovations that stimulate the development of new, next-generation online and blended programs that lead to associate’s or bachelor’s degrees. Affordability is a key component of this wave. Applicants, including accredited public, private, or for-profit institutions of higher education, are eligible for awards of up to $1 million.

This wave of challenges is unique and vital to the student success agenda because it is working to bridge the continuum between secondary and postsecondary education. It will also support significant change in both the supply of and demand for effective solutions to problems of student readiness, persistence, and completion.

To date, NGLC, with its funding partners, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, has awarded $17.5 million in grants to 48 organizations and institutions in 33 states, the District of Columbia, and the United Kingdom.

This third wave of funding poses a significant challenge as well as a significant opportunity to effect meaningful change. It challenges us all to focus on a less granular, more comprehensive, whole-model approach to student learning that encompasses both dimensions of youth development: readiness and completion. It seeks to discover and spotlight innovation that might otherwise be overlooked, and it invites exploration of solutions for which venues might not previously have existed. Please spread the word about the availability of these grants with your networks and to help identify candidates who might fit these profiles and benefit from NGLC’s resources.

More information is available by visiting the NGLC website. If you think you may be an eligible candidate or know of individuals or institutions that may meet the above criteria, NGLC also urges you to participate in a series of NGLC informational webinars. Details are as follows; please pass along this invitation to friends and colleagues.

NGLC Wave III Webinars

October 11, 2011, 1:00pm EST    

Wave IIIa, Breakthrough School Models for College Readiness; Proposal Walk-Through


October 13, 2011, 1:00pm EST    

Wave IIIb, Breakthrough Models for College Completion; Proposal Walk-Through


October 25, 2011, 3:00pm EST    

Chat with NGLC Program Officer–Wave IIIa


October 27, 2011, 3:00pm EST

Chat with NGLC Program Officer–Wave IIIb


To join any of these webinars, click here on the day of the webinar and select to “Enter as Guest.” Type your name and affiliation (Example: Carie Page, NGLC) and enter the room.

Posted by The League for Innovation in the Community College on 10/05/2011 at 5:41 AM | Categories: Projects -