School Solutions Seed Fund

The 15th Annual Showcase was a success!


Pictured (l to r): Michael O’Neil, Chair, Boston School Committee; Tommy Chang, Superintendent, Boston Public Schools; James Likis (Award Winner), Teacher, Jeremiah E. Burke High School, Co-Creator, DIY Coaching;; Jennifer Glynn (Award Winner), Teacher, Match Community Day Charter School, Co-Creator, DIY Coaching; Laura Perille, President & CEO, EdVestors; Rahn Dorsey, Chief of Education, City of Boston; Regina Robinson, Member, Boston School Committee.

On April 12, 2017, a packed house of leaders in education, business, philanthropy, and the nonprofit sector took the opportunity to meet the “Solution Seekers” and learn more about the 2017 School Solutions Seed Fund innovators and their projects. Their work was brought to life by presentations from front-line educators, a video of prior winners of the Phillip H. Gordon Legacy Award, and remarks from Boston Public Schools’ Superintendent Tommy Chang.

The annual Philip H. Gordon Legacy Award honors EdVestors’ late co-founder, and is awarded to a Seed Fund project that exemplifies Phil’s values of Equity, Innovation, and Impact. A highlight of the evening was the collaborative decision-making by Showcase guests who were invited to cast a vote for this year’s winner.

Coming in first by just one vote, the DIY Coaching Project at Boston Collegiate Charter School, Jeremiah E. Burke High School and Match Community Day Charter School was chosen to receive the $30,000 award! In the DIY Coaching pilot, teachers use video to evaluate their own teaching and provide constructive feedback to their colleagues with the goal of collectively improving their practice and increasing student engagement and learning.

Learn more about prior winners of the Philip H. Gordon Legacy Award

School Solutions Seed Fund

EdVestors’ School Solutions Seed Fund is a nimble investment vehicle for Boston educators to receive support for problem-solving, experimentation, and innovation in their schools. Seed funding provides schools with the opportunity to move quickly and test, plan, or pilot a solution to ongoing challenges impacting student learning.

Through the School Solutions Seed Fund, EdVestors makes initial investments of $10,000 each to up to 10 promising ideas, with a smaller number of seed-funded projects receiving larger, longer-term investments to expand their work based on early success and the potential for impact.

Seed Fund recipients form a Learning Cohort and participate in structured learning, sharing, and reflection together. The Cohort connects teachers and school leaders working on similar challenges across schools to share their best thinking on how to improve teaching and learning for all students. Seed Fund recipients also share their work with the broader urban education community each year at EdVestors’ annual Urban Education Showcase in April.

Investing in on-the-ground solutions, in partnership with our funders, is an essential part of EdVestors’ approach to strategic philanthropy. The Seed Fund pushes us to think beyond what we already know about how schools change, to remain open to new ideas, and to find even more transformative ways to work on behalf of all students.

Learn more about the 2017 School Solutions Seed Fund Grantees.

Grant Seekers


The Seed Fund creates opportunities for solution-seeking educators and nonprofits to respond to the problems they face daily on the front lines of education and taps into the innovative spirit of Boston’s educators and nonprofits — those who recognize a problem in their school or classroom and are ready to try a new strategy to address it.

Initial Seed Fund investments are for $10,000 to pilot proposed projects from January to June. Larger, longer-term investments are available for a subset of seed-funded initiatives to continue their work and expand or replicate their efforts in the following school year. Seed Fund recipients also form a Learning Cohort to share their experiences and best practices with each other and with EdVestors. Priority is given to solutions that take place during the school day.


Entrepreneurial and problem-solving educators (teachers, principals, headmasters) and system and network leaders (of BPS, charter, parochial, and independent schools) are eligible to apply to the School Solutions Seed Fund. We also welcome applications from nonprofit organizations partnering with schools to solve a school’s priority need. Projects should be clearly defined as a solution to a specific urban education challenge in classrooms or schools serving high-needs students in grades PreK- 12 in Boston.


The deadline to apply for funding for the 2016-17 school year is now closed. The next deadline to apply will be in November 2017 for January 2018 funding. New application guidelines will be posted in September 2017. For you reference, please see below for our most recent application.

2016-2017 Seed Fund Application