The Coleridge Initiative set “a goal to create an innovation sandbox” for federal, state, and local agencies to use data across agency lines, address program questions, and generate innovative ideas.  A new $5 Million funding opportunity is available “to further collaboration of state agencies…and their partner organizations” and that leads to the development of innovative products. Register for one of the webinars to learn more about the project tiers, funding, and application process. 

With a vision “to transform the secure and safe use of data and evidence to inform policy in a fast-changing world”, the Data Challenge “is inspired by the many successful investments made by government agencies to inform education-workforce transitions.” Coleridge welcomes “novel and innovative projects” that contribute to a community understanding of the impacts of programmatic investments and that lead to sustainable infrastructures. Proposals that include aspects of the following areas of high interest will be considered:

  • Target populations: low-income learners/workers, at-risk youth, underrepresented minorities, immigrants, and formerly incarcerated individuals. They should recognize that all people are key assets who have untapped talent and are eager to engage in the labor market.
  • Education to workforce outcomes: postsecondary to labor market transitions, secondary transitions, leading indicators of economic mobility and/or wage improvements, and unemployment to reemployment patterns; leading indicators of progress towards outcomes, such as first-year persistence, credential completion, time to completion, and job placement.
  • Feasibility studies: new approaches to credentialing and credentialing transparency, alignment between K-12, postsecondary and workforce data systems.

The two-step application process begins with the submission of a Letter of Intent (due October 20, 2021). Once the Evaluation Committee reviews all the letters, outcome notifications will be sent November 20, 2021, to the selected finalists. Those finalists will be invited to submit a full proposal (due January 30, 2021). First-round awards will be announced March 15, 2022.