Well-Resourced, Equitable, and Responsive Systems
Every successful effort to improve educational outcomes and equity for students includes two key levers: money and power. From working directly with district leaders to implement equitable innovations, to shaping state-level conversations on funding and finances, to helping parents, intermediaries, and advocates create family- and student-centered strategies, Bellwether builds strong systems that drive resources equitably to schools and students.
Bellwether understands how to create more equitable systems, and uses that expertise to advise stakeholders. Our research and analysis shape the national conversation on teacher pensions, school funding and finance, and fiscal trade-offs policymakers face. We help some of the nation’s most complex school districts make sustainable, strategic decisions in response to new demands and new opportunities. And we support intermediaries, community leaders, parents, and nonprofits to effectively pull levers for change. Our work redirects resources, reshapes the system, and recalibrates power.
The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare inequities baked into the very foundation of our systems. Today, states and districts face greater urgency than ever to realize equitable outcomes for students from systemically marginalized communities. Yet, state funding formulae tilt resources toward schools with higher tax bases; pension systems direct funds away from students — and often disadvantage teachers in the process; and districts are frequently set up asymmetrically to their students’ needs. Addressing these structural challenges will create a more level playing field for all students.
Bellwether’s team brings deep experience shaping policy and driving equitable practices at the local, state, and federal levels. We’ve taught in classrooms and overseen school systems, led state agencies, advised state legislatures, served on state boards of education, navigated change management within large school districts, and set policy from the U.S. Department of Education and the White House. Over the past decade, we’ve worked with more than 600 partners — including districts, state agencies, and local intermediaries — and had our work featured in The Washington Post, USA Today, The Atlantic, and dozens of other national, local, and trade news media outlets.
Splitting the Bill: Understanding Education Finance Equity
Priced Out of Public Schools: District Lines, Housing Access, and Inequitable Educational Options
Teacher Retirement Systems: A Ranking of the States
From Pandemic to Progress: Eight Education Pathways for COVID-19 Recovery
Partner With Us
We've partnered with a diverse array of equity-focused clients — from large-scale foundations to school districts to nonprofits to mission-driven companies. Let's work together to transform education.