An Open Letter to Educators From TrueSchool Studio

We believe the best ideas in education will come from educators like you.

TrueSchool Studio
Nov 3, 2015 · 4 min read

We at The Teachers Guild believe in the importance of friends and radical partnerships. TrueSchool Studio is one of those amazing relationships. They are part of a growing ecosystem who share in our belief that every teacher is a designer, and are committed to going within and beyond school walls to bring teacher designed solutions to life. Like The Guild, they are part of a movement to transform education by going from designed FOR teachers to designed BY teachers. That is why we are so excited to introduce them to you! Over the next three weeks we will share stories of Teacher Designers from Chicago Public Schools who engaged in a student-centered design process with TrueSchool.

— The Teachers Guild team

Dear Education Innovators + Innovative Educators,

We believe there is tremendous potential to rethink and reimagine education today. With fewer than 1 in 5 low-income students graduating from college, we also know there’s an urgent need to rethink current education models.*

Educators seek solutions that reflect the realities of their classrooms and the experiences of their students. By identifying and supporting new educator-led, student-centered solutions, we believe we can transform student outcomes.

We don’t need to wait for top-down change.

No policymaker or president is as powerful as a teacher when it comes to shaping the student experience. Frontline educators — those working most directly with students in classrooms and schools — are the critical designers of the student experience.

With your unique knowledge of student needs and school challenges, you have the potential to create powerful new solutions and lead change.

Your time, insight, and action are priceless.

Your role is crucial, demanding, and you don’t have time to waste. We value the incredible insight you have — an invaluable understanding of the culture, resources, and opportunities at your school.

TrueSchool works with frontline educators, like you, to reimagine what is possible, engage in empathy-focused research, and lead cutting-edge solutions. We engage school leaders, teachers, students, and community members through a design and innovation process that harnesses existing assets, leverages local insight, and drives solution creation and mindset from within.

We support educators in this process to go from idea to impact, but we do not prescribe the solution — you are the source of ideas and leadership for transformative solutions.

The opportunity for impact is tremendous.

TrueSchool partners with districts and organizations to enable informed risk-taking in education, create new professional opportunities for teacher leaders, and cultivate cultures of continuous learning in order to accelerate improved outcomes for students. We encourage distributed leadership and connections across schools in order to enable powerful collaboration and idea-sharing.

We’ve had the privilege to work with over a thousand amazing, innovative educators to develop the knowledge, skills, and mindsets that make student-centered design possible.

The potential is limitless.

Together, we can imagine “true” or fully realized schools- places of limitless potential for people and learning. By creating a network of innovative educators, equipped with a student-centered design process, we believe that effective solutions to a broad range of challenges can be designed, scaled, and shared within schools, across districts, nationally, and globally.

We believe the best ideas for the present and future of education will come from educators like you.

Thank you for everything you do.


Amy Vreeland, Founder + CEO

*Martha J. Bailey and Susan M. Dynarski, “Inequality in Postsecondary Attainment,” 2011. In Greg Duncan and Richard Murnane, eds., Whither Opportunity: Rising Inequality, Schools, and Children’s Life Chances, pp. 117–132. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.

The Teachers Guild

Teachers are the innovators education has been waiting for

TrueSchool Studio

Written by

We are a research and design team partnering with frontline educators to enable student-centered design in classrooms, schools, and districts.

The Teachers Guild

Teachers are the innovators education has been waiting for

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