Background In 2018, the One8 Foundation funded Learning Heroes to conduct research in Massachusetts aimed at better understanding parent mindsets. Learning Heroes research found that 88% of K-8 Massachusetts parents reported their children were at or above grade level in reading and math; in reality, other data suggest the actual percentage of Massachusetts children in these grades who perform at or above grade level is closer to 50%. The data also suggested that Massachusetts parents feel a strong sense of responsibility when it comes to their children’s education and are eager to get more involved in their children’s school. To be effective partners, however, parents need to start from an accurate picture of their children’s achievement and progress and more robust engagement options focused on advancing student achievement need to be in place. The One8 Foundation is offering a set of mini-grants designed to increase awareness of the Learning Heroes research and initiate conversations about action-oriented responses.
  • Dissemination Grants will be used to increase awareness of the Learning Heroes research and stimulate discussion among different groups of stakeholders who interact with the K-12 education system
  • Collaboration Grants will be used to support entities who want to partner to outline a plan for potential action in response to data surfaced in the research
Funding for both grant opportunities will be offered in two rounds. Grantees receiving funds in the first round will conduct their dissemination or collaboration planning work between January and April and will attend a convening in May to share reactions and promising action ideas. Grantees applying in the second round will follow a similar process starting with an April 1 grant application deadline and culminating in a September convening. Following both rounds, One8 will make available implementation funding for groups who are selected to pilot ideas developed during the mini-grant phase. Grant descriptions, requirements, and eligibility Dissemination mini-grants will support convening activities to disseminate and discuss the Learning Heroes research and gather input on ideas for actionable solutions. Specific requirements include:
  • Eligible organizations are those operating in Massachusetts that exist to support stakeholder groups that regularly interact with the K-12 education system
  • Preference will be given to organizations that include parent, student, teacher, and district representatives or plan to gather input from those groups
  • Grant applications should include a plan to engage in dialogue with at least 100 individuals to discuss data and information relevant to their local schools
  • First-round grantees must commit to attending the May 2019 convening and sharing 3 action ideas based on learnings from the dissemination mini-grant experience; for second round grantees this convening will take place in September 2019
  • Grants will be up to $2,000 per organization
Collaboration mini-grants will support a group of organizations in creating a concept for either a set of shared services, new intervention, or campaign that engages stakeholder networks in responding to the data and taking action toward school improvement. Grantees will develop a full plan, timeline, budget, and success measures to operationalize the planned intervention. Specific requirements include:
  • Grant applications should be submitted by a partnership of at least 2 organizations (with preference given to applications by 3 or more organizations) representing different constituencies or viewpoints, with all partners working as active contributors to the plan
  • Those selected to receive grants must gather feedback on their partnership concept from the different organizations’ stakeholder networks
  • First round grantees must commit to attend the May 2019 convening and share learnings and the proposed collaboration concept; second round grantees must commit to attend a similar convening in September 2019
  • Grants will be up to $20,000 per proposal
  Round 1 Round 2
Learning Heroes online webinar November 15, 2018, 4pm N/A
Mini-grant application deadline December 14, 2018 April 1, 2019
Grantees announced January 2, 2019 April 15, 2019
Dissemination and Collaboration work underway January – April 2019 April – July 2019
All grantees convene May 2019 September 2019
Pilot implementation grant application Summer 2019 Fall 2019
Pilot implementations underway 2019-2020 School year January 2020
   Application links and resources Apply for a Dissemination Mini-Grant here Apply for a Collaboration Mini-Grant here Learning Heroes materials here   For questions, please reach out to