Innovative Schools Virtual Learning Excursions are learning-focused virtual school and district "visits." For 2021-2022 and 2022-2023, with funding from the Barr Foundation, this experience is designed for educators, parents, students, and community leaders across New England who are interested in high school redesign.

We are not currently accepting applications for any virtual learning excursions.

The Opportunity | Choose the Destination | How to Participate | The Value and Benefits

The Opportunity

Innovative Schools Virtual Learning Excursions give high school educators and partners the opportunity to directly engage in reimagining how education happens. Guided by adult learning facilitators at NGLC, participating teams learn with and from innovative, next gen school and district communities.

  • Examine practice
  • Connect with innovative peers
  • Explore bold learning models tied to 21st-century success

With virtual learning excursions, our school and district partners provide rich examples and first-hand accounts of what makes their learning designs so effective and so special—through multimedia stories, school materials, and interactive virtual sessions with students, teachers, and school leaders at each site. LEARN MORE

If you are based in New England and interested in high school redesign, we encourage you to assemble a team and apply for one of the virtual learning excursions. Please note that the experience—and criteria for who needs to be on your team—varies by site.

Choose the Destination That Works Best for You

As you decide which virtual learning excursion to apply for, consider the learning model, the type of site, and team composition requirements to find the best virtual learning excursion for your team.

Mission Vista High School and Vista Unified School DistrictVUSD logo

  • Learning at the high school is student-centered and focused on strengths. They use a variety of strategies to personalize their teaching for each student. To make these changes, they support teachers to use their "agency"—to set their own goals aligned to the goals of the school (and district) and take action to achieve them.
  • The district creates the conditions for innovative teaching and learning to occur. They use strategies like invitation instead of mandates, personalizing professional development for staff, and designing innovations collaboratively with stakeholders and industry partners.
  • This excursion is uniquely designed for teams that have an equitable distribution of multiple roles in a school’s community—educators, parents, students, and key community members, such as business leaders, leaders of community organizations, school committee members, local government officials, and more.
  • Teams must be focused at the high school level and include an equal distribution of 6-12 members that are district-based (district leadership), school-based (one or more principals and at least two students), and community-based (including but not limited to workforce and industry partners, parents, and school committee/school board members).
  • Following a kick-off on September 28, 2022, teams will participate in five interactive sessions with Mission Vista and Vista Unified representatives (two in October, one in November, and one in December) and a learning showcase on April 5, 2023. We are no longer accepting applications.
  • Learn more about Vista with our multimedia stories.

Blackstone Academy Charter School

BACS logo

  • This mission-driven charter high school community feels like a family. Their key to success is supporting each learner as a whole person. College and career readiness is a strength.
  • This excursion is best for small teams from a single high school in New England. Teams should be 3-7 members and must include the school principal and at least one student.
  • The interactive session with the Blackstone community occurred between November 2021 and January 2022. We are no longer accepting applications.
  • Learn more about BACS with our multimedia stories!

Why Teams Need Multiple Roles

A district/school brings together administrators, teachers, staff, parents, students, community leaders, industry partners, and others in a broad community. All of these roles matter as students enter schools, learn and grow from preschool to senior year, and graduate high school with what they need to thrive as well as contribute back to their communities. And all of these roles matter when a district and school wants to innovate teaching and learning.

Each Innovative Schools Virtual Learning Excursion team member, whether educator, parent, student, or community member, has a unique and important contribution to make to improve the learning experience for students. The virtual learning excursion provides an opportunity to tap into these contributions as your team discovers what “next generation learning” looks like at our partner sites, inspiring action on what’s possible in your own communities.

The Value

If there’s one lesson NGLC has learned in our nine years of catalyzing innovation in next gen learning, it’s the truth of the maxim seeing is believing. By seeing the level of transformation and mindset change evident in the virtual learning excursion host sites, participants will deepen their knowledge of next gen learning with an eye toward strengthening teaching and learning practice in their own community.

Each virtual learning excursion provides these benefits for participants:

  • Quality time with host sites—Interactive web-based sessions are designed around your goals and interests.
  • Connection with teams across New England—Get to know and engage with innovation-minded colleagues who are doing similar work in your region.
  • Support from NGLC—Our experienced adult learning facilitators will help you develop goals for participation, connect with other participating teams to develop and refine your ideas, and provide coaching along the way. All of these supports will set your team up to apply what you learn back home at your own site.
  • Multimedia stories and podcasts—Students, teachers, leaders, and other key partners from the host site share the story of their innovative next gen learning approach in their own words so you can see their learning model come to life.
  • Plan for using what you see, hear, and learn—Your team will walk away from the full virtual learning excursion experience with a plan to test ideas, to find ways into innovation that work for your community, and to spark the mindsets and shared purpose to redesign learning for your students.
  • Financial support—Each team receives a mini-grant valued at $500 per team member to enable deep engagement.


Photo at top courtesy of Ola Elementary School, Henry County Schools, Georgia.

NGLC logo & Barr Foundation logo