The Final Phase of the Odyssey Initiative


The Odyssey Initiative is fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Your contributions are 100% tax deductible.

We are excited to announce that the Odyssey Initiative has completed its research phase of visiting schools across the country. We need your help to fund our plan to share what we have learned with educators, politicians, concerned citizens, and national organizations in order to help create amazing learning experiences for all children. Our supporters and the educators we met this year have stressed that our Odyssey has been about so much more than just visiting schools. OI is about changing how people talk about education in this country, and with your support, we will do just that.  

Many of you are responsible for getting this project off the ground. Thanks to you, we have notebooks full of data, archives of interview transcripts from educators across the country, days of video footage, and hundreds of photographs. Conducting research in over 60 schools was a rewarding learning experience for each of us. We produced videos and blogs all year and were featured on various informational platforms including Bloomberg Radio, SXSW, and EdWeek. Last month we were honored to be acknowledged as one of GOOD Magazine’s GOOD 100 of 2013.

On this journey, part of our mission was to share the successful practices of educators across America on an interactive blog. We have always believed that we have a responsibility to share our findings on a larger scale. The Odyssey Initiative needs funding to formally analyze the gathered data and disseminate our research to fellow educators, policy makers, and concerned citizens.  We intend to publish journal articles and a white paper, make formal presentations at conferences, and continue our practice of sharing our experiences with numerous media outlets.  

We have made it this far by making sacrifices along the way, including crashing on couches across the country, exhausting ourselves with a rigorous schedule, and taking on other employment to make ends meet. We initially intended to compensate ourselves for approximately what we would be earning as classroom teachers, but readjusted in order to allocate most of our funds to our research. We made this sacrifice because we believe that our work with OI is important not only to us, but to the broader educational reform movement.  We know that it is, and has been, valuable to educators around the country, and we are committed to fulfilling our mission.  

How You Can Help
 A year ago, our Kickstarter campaign raised $82,348 to cover the first three months of expenses. Since then, we have raised an additional $200,000 through private donations. In order to finish the final phase of our project, we need to raise $79,000 to pay our remaining expenses, fund travel to present our research, and compensate ourselves so that we have time to produce this important work.   

How Your Donation Will Be Used
Reaching our $79,000 goal will push the Odyssey Initiative into our final phase and create a space for us to achieve one of our original goals: to make an impact on educational reform in the United States and share what is already working in our schools.  

The $79,000 will allow us to:
  • - Pay the remaining balance to our web development company for creating and maintaining our interactive website and developing our branding   
  • - Produce the remaining video from our 60 school visits, including several school profiles, interviews with school leaders, and videos summarizing the themes from the year     
  • - Analyze our research from school visits and interviews 
  • - Publish articles and a white paper that share major findings and themes from our year of research 
  • - Present our research to fellow educators and policy makers at conferences, summits, and speaking engagements and make a broader impact on the educational reform movement in our country    
  • - Retain medical insurance while we work full time for the remaining months of our project

Other Ways You Can Help After You Give

  • - Recruit friends to contribute to our campaign
  • - Share this campaign on Facebook and Twitter    

Thank you for your contribution!

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