TIP works with partners to explore innovation in carefully constructed initiatives that support our mission and theory of change. This work is conducted from our “TIP Incubator.” As the name suggests, TIP is engaged in early stages of innovation where we can serve as a catalyst for change. The board-established TIP Incubator Advisory Committee guides this work.
All work within the TIP Incubator supports our foundational belief in equity for every child and every community.
In addition, we seek initiatives that provide opportunities to:
- advance innovation across a network of schools or school districts;
- engage in early-stage innovation or prototyping that aligns with our themes of rethinking, reimagining, and redesigning education;
- pursue promising partnerships and grant opportunities that would be difficult for individual districts to seek on their own;
- analyze evidence-based practices and emerging new ideas and extend them to diverse settings in order to ensure equity in opportunity
- collaborate with a strong network of partners in the implementation and funding of initiatives.
By catalyzing the efforts of our member districts and partners around these opportunities, the TIP Incubator can accelerate the development of partners’ programs and services to increase their long-term benefit to the education community and create synergy with other TIP initiatives.
Examples of Our Work
TIP Early Learning Network
With a generous three-year grant from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, TIP and its partners have developed and supported an inter-district network focused on redesigning learning environments to better address the early learning needs of vulnerable children. In its first two years, the Early Learning Network (ELN) engaged school design teams and principals from 36 schools in 12 North Carolina districts. In its third year, the ELN built on the first two cohorts’ experiences by supporting participating district teams in designing innovative prototypes to respond to the pandemic’s impacts on early learning.
The ELN immersed participating schools and districts in a cohort-based program defined by three interrelated activities that together enable transformative results: 1) Transformation through School Design; 2) Coaching for Entrepreneurial School Leadership; and 3) Innovative District Supports.
TIP created the Solution Creators Action Network (TIP-SCAN) in May 2020 with the generous support and partnership of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation. TIP-SCAN has provided a transformative framework and a structure for TIP member districts to respond to the upheaval generated by the COVID-19 pandemic to reexamine longstanding district systems and processes.
Through TIP-SCAN, TIP has distilled three commitments upheld by TIP and participating members and partners:
- A commitment to a full perspective on equity;
- A commitment to learner-centered transformation; and,
- A commitment to transparent, open design.
Each commitment embodies deeply held beliefs regarding the relationship of public educators to their students, their communities and the world at large. Our vision for TIP-SCAN is to bring together educators and communities to construct approaches to education that reflect these commitments.