BTW informing change
The Debrief

April 2010

Welcome to BTW informing change's newly designed quarterly newsletter. In this edition we offer current research and publications, useful tools and resources, as well as upcoming events. We invite you to visit our new Web site and "Join the Discussion" on our blog, Insights on Change
Research & Publications

Educational Opportunities in Hard Times

State funding cutbacks in educational programs, services and support have weakened California public schools' ability to meet the needs of their students, according to UCLA Institute for Democracy, Education and Access' (IDEA) fourth annual California Educational Opportunity Report. Currently, BTW is working with IDEA to determine the extent to which policy-makers and organizations working on education advocacy issues are making use of the report's evidence-based key findings. IDEA examined the quality and distribution of educational opportunities through student and system level data analysis. New this year are the voices and experiences of 87 school principals from across the state, which illuminate the significant challenges of already hard-hit schools and communities in California.
Coaching to SCoaching and Philanthropy GEO Action Guidetrengthen Leaders
The nonprofit sector is increasingly using executive coaches to strengthen and enhance nonprofit leadership. The Coaching and Philanthropy Project recently released three Action Guides about how grantmakers, nonprofit organizations and coaches can advance coaching as a core leadership development activity and a tool for improving organizational results. BTW partnered with CompassPoint Nonprofit Services and Leadership that Works on this research.
The State of California Clinic Leadership
Community clinics in California face many challenges trying to recruit and retain strong leaders, including a lack of resources, competition from private health care plans and the pending retirement of many CEOs. The Community Clinics Initiative and Blue Shield of California Foundation commissioned BTState of Leadership in Clinics FieldW and CompassPoint Nonprofit Services to examine the current state of leadership in the clinics field. A new trio of studies looks at the state of leadership among: clinic CEOs, medical directors and emerging leaders. A fourth piece highlights findings across these studies and explores what needs to happen to ensure strong clinic leadership, both now and in the future.
Measuring the Immeasurable
Most funders and nonprofits encounter challenges when trying to measure and quantify public policy and systems change outcomes. BTW's new funders' brief explores how grantmakers can best support their grantees in building capacity to measure progress towards outcomes on initiatives that are difficult to measure. The brief is based on BTW's experience working with the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation's Education Program and their K-12 education policy and advocacy grantees.
Tools & Resources
California Statewide Data Mapping Tool
Imagine being able to visit one Web site to locate public services, analyze demographic and residential data, create easy-to-read maps and share data projects across organizations. The Advancement Project has made this a reality by launching the California version of their Healthy City Web site. Healthy City is an "information + action resource" that improves access to high-quality data to support community-driven policy advocacy. BTW is beginning to utilize this tool to assist community clinics in mapping community food access data.
Find Data on California Public School Conditions

How can community-based organizations, parent groups and others concerned with educational equity access high-quality data about public schools in California? UCLA IDEA's Educational Opportunity search engine helps users access data regarding the educational conditions at any of California's public school districts. The search engine provides information about access to qualified teachers, overcrowding and college enrollment, among other indicators at specific schools and across the state as a whole. BTW is working with IDEA to better understand how users are accessing this database and the extent to which it can lead to greater public engagement in education reform efforts.
Events Calendar
Sync or Sink
What: The California Workforce Association's Spring 2010 Conference
Where: Newport Beach, California
When: April 7-9
Who: Registration is now open for CWA members and non-members.
New Approach, New Economy: Realizing the Potential of Social Enterprise
What: Social Enterprise Alliance's 2010 Summit
Where: San Francisco, California
When: April 28-30
Who: Registration is now open for Alliance members and non-members.
Note: BTW Principal, Ellen Irie, will be attending this conference.

Intersections: Social Change, Social Justice, Social Innovation
What: Council on Foundations' Annual Conference
Where: Denver, Colorado
When: April 25-27
Who: Registration is now open for Council members and qualified non-members.
Visit our New Web Site
BTW informing change
 Join the Discussion!
Join the Discussion!
Cultivating Breakthrough Change: What makes coaching unique? Why doesn't it happen more often? 
Discovering Your Evaluation Capacity: What are the key components for determining an organization's readiness for evaluation?
Evaluation, Integration & Innovation: Why is it important to integrate evaluation into nonprofit organizations' routine practices?
Why Nonprofits Don't Make Mistakes: How can funders encourage innovation and new ideas among their grantees?

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