Greenfield Expeditions

A Case Study of Achievement First’s Greenfield Schools Year 1 Pilot

Achievement First (AF) is a network of 32 high-performing public charter schools across five cities in the Northeast. Despite strong postsecondary success data (97% matriculation rate), long-term alumni tracking revealed low college graduation rates. After surveying and interviewing alumni, AF recognized they needed to do more to ensure more of their young people really thrived in college and beyond. In addition, the move to Common Core revealed gaps in students’ abilities to engage in higher order thinking and complex, non-standard problem-solving.

These dynamics pushed leaders to rethink AF’s core model.  After engaging in conversation with school designers Aylon Samouha and Jeff Wetzler, co-founders of Transcend, AF decided officially to launch what would become a multi-year innovation effort to create a new model of school for AF. Their work included a two-site pilot, which led to the development of the Greenfield model and inspired the launch of Transcend.

Transcend is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit that operates nationally.