For District Leaders

Nominate Your Schools for the 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship!

Nominate your school leaders for the 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship! 


Build the capacity of your school leaders to design innovative approaches to learning and continuously improve excellent, equitable schools.

Thanks to the generous support of our impact investors, the 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship is fully funded for up to 20 schools in North Carolina, Nebraska, and Missouri. Every school successfully completing the Fellowship also receives a grant of $500-$2000. A limited number of funded Fellowships are also available to schools outside these three states.

The TrueSchool Fellowship has proven impact. 2018-19 TrueSchool Fellows realized gains across EVERY impact measure.  

Collective efficacy –the BEST leading indicator of student achievement–grew by 20%. They also grew their collective capacity to envision, test, and rapidly improve new approaches to learning, always keeping students at the center.  

Commitment to their schools and districts increased by 18% and 24% respectively. Teachers are the single most important factor shaping student achievement. When we develop, invest in, and retain great educators, we move closer to a vision of education systems in which ALL students achieve and thrive. For more detailed info on our impact, look here. 

We are excited by these initial findings and anticipate even stronger results in 2020. We are committed to reaching 3,000+ new TrueSchool Fellows, improving learning for over 200,000 students by 2023. Join this national community of the most innovative districts, schools, and education leaders across the country!  


The 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship application is open! A school leader or teacher leader may complete the application. District leaders may nominate schools for the Fellowship. School receiving a district nomination will receive special consideration. 

September 15* = Priority Application Deadline  

October 15 = Final Application Deadline  

*70% of Fellows will be selected from those who apply by the priority deadline Encourage your schools to apply early! 


Educators participate in the Fellowship as school teams of 4-6 individuals, including the school leader and at least 3 teacher leaders. 

District leaders are invited to participate in our national learning community of innovative TrueSchool Systems Leaders, but this is optional. 


The 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship kicks off in January 2020 and runs through December 2020. The Fellowship timeline is intended to support schools in the design and planning of innovative approaches to improve student learning across THREE academic years. 

The Fellowship incorporates


TrueSchool coaches co-create solutions with educators that make your strategic priorities come to life on the ground. The 2020 TrueSchool Fellowship activates educators to realize your vision. The TrueSchool Fellowship supports educators in a wide range of change and innovation efforts. This action-oriented Fellowship has 3 core components:  Studios, Virtual coaching, and Fieldwork. For more information about the Fellowship, click here. To learn more about our findings from the 2018-2019 Fellowship view our Final Evaluation Report.


Studios are the only component of the Fellowship which will require teams to travel in order to meet in-person. There are four full Studio days on Saturdays spread out over the course of the Fellowship year. Locations and dates of Studios are available here. 


Interested in learning more about the TrueSchool Fellowship?
Sign up for a 30-minute webinar with our Impact Team for more details and Q&A.

Our Manager of Impact and State Leads will share our approach, our results, and a deep dive into the learning experience for school teams.  Note: You are welcome to RSVP and join ANY of the below webinars.  

  • Webinar 1 with Missouri State Lead  Sept 9, 3:30-4 CT       RSVP here!
  • Webinar 2 with North Carolina State Lead  October 2, 4:30-5 ET/3:30-4 CT      RSVP here!
  • Webinar 3 with Nebraska State Lead October 3, 10-10:30 CT     RSVP here!

Frequently Asked Questions

If my district participated in the 2018-2019 Fellowship can schools reapply for the 2020 Fellowship?
Yes! we encourage alumni districts to nominate new schools to apply. Any school in your district, including those who participated in the 2018-2019 Fellowship are welcome to apply.

Do district leaders participate in the Fellowship?
District leaders are encouraged to engage with TrueSchool and stay involved via our District Leader virtual meetings throughout the year, but this is not a requirement. We believe that aligning district priorities with educator vision empowers teachers to have the greatest impact on students. A virtual district leader orientation will be announced following the selection of schools and held before the beginning of the program. This orientation will address the ways district leaders can get involved in the Fellowship. There will also be district leader focus groups which will allow district leaders from across all three states to connect and share learnings.  

Can more than one school in my district apply?
Yes! We encourage multiple schools in the same school district to apply. We believe that the district level is one of the systems with the most potential for transformational change for students. By bringing multiple schools in the same district together in the Fellowship we believe teams are able to learn from each other and align their vision with district strategic priorities. In doing so we hope to facilitate the emergence of exceptional districts that are proof-points for the impact of a student-centered process.

Are there opportunities to continue to work with TrueSchool after the end of the year long Fellowship?
Yes, we recognize that achieving transformative impact for students is a multi-year process, and we encourage alumni to reapply for a second year of the Fellowship. This gives teams the space and time to further prototype and refine their solutions.       

Are there opportunities for schools to receive funding through the TrueSchool Fellowship?
Yes! At the conclusion of the Fellowship, peer-to-peer micro-investments of $500-2000 are made to each school. The exact amount of the investments are determined by the educators within the cohort, based on their assessment of other school team’s potential for impact for students. In addition, TrueSchool aims to regular share and connect Fellows and Alumni with other opportunities for funding.