TrueSchool is an applied research and action design firm that is reimagining the pathway to reform in public schools. The solution is considered to be bottom-up innovation–teachers drive the movement to address the challenges and changes that need to be made in public schools, which are populated by 40 million students across the country. “Stand out” teachers partner with TrueSchool to redesign classrooms, schools, and systems.
The TrueSchool headquarters is located in the 4.0 Schools office suite. The just-over-three-year-old organization is an early-stage education incubator that frequently works with similar companies, and also is host to the Launch program, which supports entrepreneurs and helps them bring new ventures—products, services, or school models—to life in under 60 days.
Over the summer, founder Amy Vreeland facilitated the Summer Design Program in Chicago. The five-week professional learning program brought together 135 educations from 40 public schools in the city to tackle the most pressing issues in education. The challenges faced were then turned into working prototypes.
The hope is that the process learned and the results found at the end of the program carry through the school year. Stacy Stewart, Principal of Belmont-Cragin Elementary, said “We need to be applying this process to work we’re doing with our partner school. We need to be doing this work to really understand what the problem is and communicate about the right solution.”
Vreeland wants to build talent in schools and districts nationwide. “Although education policy and district structures differ from state to state, a process focused on grassroots change is highly replicable and not geographically limited,” mentioned a statement released last week.
“This is essential to developing sustainable, scalable models to improve student outcomes,” explained Vreeland.