The GRAD Partnership

Partnering with communities to use high-quality student success systems so that schools are empowered to graduate all students ready for the future. 

We need new and improved student success systems and structures

to enable all to thrive in pandemic-impacted times.

→  Staffing and substitute shortages result in fewer adults in schools, at the very time that more students need supportive adult relationships.

→  Pandemic impacts continue to be dynamic students who are doing ok at one moment may not be at the next.

→  Students whose prior experiences in school suggest they may not need enhanced or adaptive supports are showing a need for them.

→  Students furthest from opportunities pre-pandemic live in communities hardest hit by pandemics impacts

→ Student supports and systems need to be:

→ adaptive

→ proactive rather than reactive

→ focused on the here and now and the long-term

→ universal and customized (be able to provide all students what they need to succeed)

→ draw on and enable student, teacher, family and community agency

→ focused on improving educational systems so they promote the success of all students

We can do more together, with greater impact, than if we work alone.
Pooling our experiences and learnings, as well as creating a shared definition of high quality and some common tools, builds all our capacities.
Shared aim to move high quality student success (on-track) systems from a relatively new to routine school practice.
A deep commitment to equity and anti-racism and belief in student, educator, family and community agency.

Nine Organizations

coming together for one collective effort

American Institutes for Research

BARR Center

Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching

Everyone Graduates Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Education

National Center for Learning Disabilities

UChicago Network for
College Success

Rural Schools

Schott Foundation

Talent Development Secondary

Communicating Partners

The School Superintendents Association



Education Strategy

Education Resource

Florida Association of School Administrators

National Education Equity Lab

National Rural Education Association

Advisory Board

Edward Anderson

Executive Director, OnTrack Greenville

Catalina Cifuentes

Executive Director, Riverside County Office of Education

Juli Coleman

Chief of Improvement School Networks, CORE Districts

Mark Dunetz

President, New Vision for Public Schools

Zakiya Smith Ellis

Principal, EducationCounsel, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough

Carla Gay

Executive Director, Innovation and Partnership, Gresham-Barlow School District

Elizabeth Kirby

Superintendent, Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District

Emily Pallin

Executive Director, Connecticut RISE Network

Risa Sackman

Director U.S. Education, FHI 360

Candace Standberry-Robertson

Director of College and Career Strategy, Orleans Parish School Board

Amy Szymanski

Secondary Transition and Workforce Development, Ohio Statewide Specialist, State Support Team #1