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Elev8 Wins Department of Education Award

Resource type: News

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On Monday, October 15, at an event held in Washington, the U.S. Department of Education and the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) recognized Elev8 programs in Baltimore and Chicago as Together for Tomorrow School Improvement Champions.

Elev8 was one of 24 initiatives named as Together for Tomorrow Challenge Champions. This first-time award was given to partnerships that met Together for Tomorrow School Improvement Challenge criteria for propelling improvement in low-performing schools. In addition, seven demonstration sites operating as part of the AmeriCorps VISTA program through CNCS were also honored.

“When it comes to turning around low-performing schools, the Department’s investments and the work of schools and districts are only part of the solution,” said U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who presented the awards. “Our schools need community engagement to support and sustain school improvement. The Together for Tomorrow School Improvement Champions we recognize today have made model commitments to help foster partnerships, propel school improvement, and produce better outcomes for students. To sustain change over the long haul, nothing is more important.”

Elev8 was represented by Nicole A. Johnson, Senior Director, Elev8 Baltimore; Syda Segovia Taylor, Director, Elev8 Chicago; Mark Carter, Program Director, Elev8 Baltimore; and Carlos Nelson, Executive Director of Chicago’s Greater Auburn Gresham Development Corp.

The Elev8 programs won in the Showcase category for existing initiatives. The award recognized Elev8 as one of America’s best school-community partnerships currently working to raise student achievement in our lowest-performing schools. A panel of staff at the Department of Education, the White House and CNCS judged the winners of the challenge.

“Time after time, we have seen how committed parents and community volunteers can make a powerful difference in the educational outcomes of our students,” said Corporation for National and Community Service CEO Wendy Spencer. “Today we shine the spotlight on 31 initiatives that are bringing together citizens and communities to help young people achieve their best in school and prepare for success in life.”

>> Read a press release about Elev8’s Together for Tomorrow award

Elev8 is an Atlantic grantee.

To Learn More about Elev8:

> Visit or the websites of the local initiatives:

Elev8 Baltimore
Elev8 Chicago 
Elev8 New Mexico 
Elev8 Oakland 

> Read News & Updates 



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