Project Snapshots

Client:

California Emerging Technology Fund

Goal:

Support the California Emerging Technology Fund (CETF) in securing funding to support work to close the Digital Divide in California; Provide meeting design and facilitation for a learning community of CETF partners and grantees to share successes, collaboratively approach challenges, and support each other's work to close the Digital Divide in California.

Timeline:

2009 - 2015

What We Did:

Fund Development

In 2009-2010 GPG helped CETF secure two federal Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grants from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) totaling $14.35 million in federal funding. CETF was awarded the two grants to continue its work to close the Digital Divide by connecting Californians to broadband and digital careers. The two grants, Broadband Awareness and Adoption (BAA) and Access to Careers in Technology (ACT), involved a total of 19 partner organizations working with CETF to implement this work across the state.

Learning Community Facilitation

Between April 2010 and June 2013 CETF and its 19 partners reached millions of Californians in communities most impacted by the Digital Divide, promoting broadband awareness and adoption at home, offering basic and advanced computer training, distributing computing devices, and providing job training for 21st Century careers. During this time, GPG supported CETF and its partners by facilitating learning communities for the partners participating in the two grant programs. GPG convened the learning communities for webinars and quarterly in-person meetings to share information and experiences, engage in group learning, discuss new ideas, and support each other to overcome challenges.

In addition to this work, GPG conducted research and developed a report sharing lessons learned by CETF and its partners in addressing challenges faced in their work. The report was developed based on information shared at the in-person meetings and from interviews conducted by GPG.

From 2013-2015 GPG continued to provide meeting design and facilitation support for CETF grantees.

Results:

  • Support for successful outcomes of the two grant-funded projects: communicating the benefits of broadband to more than 13 million Californians; providing digital literacy training to 720,000 low-income residents; connecting 199,000 people to broadband at home; distributing nearly 12,500 free or low-cost computers; providing workforce training to more than 4,000 low-income residents; and helping trainees secure 2,600 Information and Communications Technology jobs.
  • Development of a report titled "Lessons Learned from the Field: Connecting Californians to Broadband and Digital Careers,"describing challenges and solutions identified by CETF and its partners, and intended as a resource for practitioners around the country as they plan new initiatives or seek course corrections for ongoing work to close the Digital Divide.
  • Contribution of experiences from BAA and ACT grantees to the "NTIA Broadband Adoption Toolkit" published by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration in 2013.

Client:

California Department of Education (Project funded by the David & Lucille Packard Foundation and Stuart Foundation)

Goal:

Facilitate the Educator Excellence Task Force in performing a profound and comprehensive assessment of the state of California’s teaching profession and providing substantial recommendations on how to reinvigorate the teaching system.

Timeline:

August 2011 – September 2012

What We Did:

GPG recruited a 50-member Educator Excellence Task Force (EETF), including educators, administrators, parents, researchers, and representatives from nonprofit organizations and state and local government. The EETF was divided into five working groups (educator preparation, induction, professional learning, career and leadership development, and evaluation), each with two co-chairs and one support staff. Each working group was tasked with developing recommendations in their area of focus. To facilitate this, GPG designed, conducted, and documented four in-person EETF meetings. In addition, GPG designed and facilitated conference calls and webinars, for the working groups as well as for the group of all co-chairs, in between in-person meetings. Following this series of meetings, GPG supported the working groups to finalize their recommendations, and drafted the EETF’s final report, Greatness by Design. Following a process of iterative reviews and revisions, GPG finalized Greatness by Design in September 2012.

Results:

  • Greatness by Design has been widely acknowledged as the most thorough examination of the state of teaching profession in California in a generation.

Client:

State of California Department of Education (contracted with San Mateo County Office of Education)

Goal:

Envision the future of early childhood education and develop a plan to guide the creation of a comprehensive, integrated, and coordinated system of early learning services for children birth to five in the state of California.

Timeline:

Spring 2012 – Summer 2013

What We Did:

GPG created a system to engage as many early learning and care statewide stakeholders as possible within a three-month period to help inform the development of the draft plan. This system included a dedicated website for the CCELP with background on, resources for, and news about the process, a listserv for stakeholders to receive updates, interviews, regional workshops, online survey and feedback forms, and a toolkit for stakeholders to organize local and virtual input meetings. In particular, GPG used the findings of the American Institutes for Research “Synthesis of of Recent Research – Conditions of Children Birth to Age Five and Status of Early Childhood Services in California” (August 2012) as a framework for stakeholder activities, thereby grounding stakeholder input in research. GPG designed and facilitated all in-person meetings and analyzed and synthesized the resulting input from all stakeholder engagement activities. More about the CCELP planning project can be found at the CCELP website.

Results:

  • Due to its strong vetting by more than 2,800 stakeholders, the California Comprehensive Early Learning Plan (CCELP) has become a North Star for the field of early education in the state.
  • The CCELP was a major advocacy tool in the 2014 round of state budgeting, helping to inform the investment of public funds in quality improvement and access to the highest need children.