NewSchools Venture Fund Invests $1 Million in The Achievement Network (ANet)
New investment will support organization’s efforts to improve student achievement
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - September 16, 2009 - NewSchools Venture Fund today announced an investment of $1 million in The Achievement Network (formerly called Massachusetts Public School Performance), a nonprofit organization committed to helping teachers and school leaders understand and effectively use real-time student data – test results that are made immediately available to teachers – to improve instruction and increase student achievement. The Achievement Network (ANet) currently serves schools in Boston, New Orleans, and Washington DC. The organization plans to expand to two additional urban markets in 2009-2010, adding services in Chicago and Newark, and will serve a total of 70 schools.
Today, in many schools, teachers administer standardized tests only a few times each year. They receive the results of these tests too late to make substantial adjustments in areas where students may be struggling. Research has shown that the consistent use of test data is a highly effective tool for improving student achievement. Teachers and leaders need real-time data about student performance to immediately understand student strengths and weaknesses and create interventions that meet key areas of need. However, many schools lack the capacity and necessary structures and processes to use data effectively. In response, NewSchools Venture Fund has sought to identify and support strong entrepreneurial organizations that can help schools address this enormous challenge. By filling this critical need in high-poverty urban schools, ANet helps schools take data-driven action to improve student outcomes and close the achievement gap.
Founded in 2005, The Achievement Network helps teachers and principals collect, understand and effectively use real-time data about their students’ performance. In the schools working with ANet, teachers administer ANet-designed tests on a regular and frequent basis. Within 72 hours of a test, ANet provides timely and accurate results to schools, and organizes meetings to work with leaders and teachers to make sure that the data are understood and plans for instruction and remediation are adjusted accordingly.