Cry me a river. The Sprout Fund picked the other guys.


Cry me a river. Bridge to nowhere. Sprout Fund picks the other guys for local funding. Nice to see two other agencies with efforts get selected, Sarah Heinz House and Venture Outdoors.
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Friday, April 29, 2016

RE: Decision on your Remake Learning Badge-enabled Playlists & Pathways proposal

Dear Mark Rauterkus:

Thank you for your proposal to The Sprout Fund for the Remake Learning Badge-enabled Playlists & Pathways RFP.

Sprout received 32 applications for this opportunity and competition for funding was very strong. After careful consideration, The Sprout Fund has reached consensus on the 2016-17 Badge-enabled Playlists & Pathways grant recipients.

Although we regret that we are unable to give favorable consideration to your proposal, please join us in congratulating the 6 teams selected for support:

Architecture for Civic Engagement from Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture with Architecture-Construction-Engineering (ACE), Assemble, Carnegie Museum of Art & Heinz Architectural Center, Fallingwater, and Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation. Playlists and badges will lead learners towards careers in architecture and foster a sense of civic responsibility.

CLP Pathways from the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh with Labs@CLP branches including Allegheny, East Liberty, and Brookline. Playlists and badges will formalize and expand connected learning opportunities including audio recording, video game design, digital camera skills, zinemaking, and sewing at new and existing Labs branches.

College Readiness from the Homewood Children’s Village with Homewood-Brushton YMCA, Higher Achievement, Operation Better Block, Junior Achievement, and Geneva College. Playlists and badges will reinforce the path to post-secondary success by laying out a clear route through high school and towards college or other post-secondary placements.

Introduction to Solidworks and Design from CMU Robotics Institute Girls of Steel with Sarah Heinz House, City Charter High School, and University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering. Playlists and badges will enable learners to design and fabricate robotics parts for competitions and collaborations.

Young Conservationist Connected Learning from Student Conservation Association with Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, GTECH Strategies, and Venture Outdoors.Playlists and badges will provide knowledge, support, and connected activities to enhance and recognize students’ next-level commitments to conservation. 

Youth Leading Change from Duquesne University with Gwen’s Girls, The Restorative Justice Group, Sisters of eSTEAM, Power(ed) by Grace, and Amil Cook Media Services. Playlists and badges will support youth in producing stories of their experiences through media research, digital storytelling, audio production, photography, podcasting, activism, and self-esteem building.

These decisions were achieved through a diligent process of information-sharing and community-building support activities, meeting with applicants, reviewing drafts, staff research, and comparative analysis of complete proposals in a competitive process. In turn, we hope the process of preparing your proposal will be of continual value to you and your collaborating organizations should you choose to pursue digital badging of playlists and pathways in the future.

If you would like more information about how to stay involved with LRNG and connect your programs to this new learning platform, please email Content for the LRNG site is encouraged to be submitted by June 3 for learning experiences, playlists, and badges throughout this summer and the 2016-17 school year.

We appreciate your continued interest in The Sprout Fund’s programs and wish you the best of luck in all of your endeavors.


The Sprout Fund
5423 Penn Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
(412) 325-0646

Ref: Round 140, Application #2812

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  • Message send from The Sprout Fund:

    As you work on developing digital badges by June 3rd, I’ve got a few helpful links and ideas to share with you.

    Competencies: One of our big goals with digital badging is to make sure they represent robust learning outcomes. When you create a badge on the LRNG platform, you’re invited to list competencies or standards connected to the learning experiences that your badge represents: You might choose to use one of the broad “workforce” competencies that are available there, or you might list some Common Core State Standards or Next Generation Science Standards. I’d also encourage you to browse the Remake Learning Competencies, which were developed over the last two years by more than 100 educators, experts, and employers in our region (including many of you!). The Remake Learning Competencies form the foundation of learning pathways that connect students to opportunities offered by schools, afterschool programs, cultural organizations, and online learning resources. By working together across boundaries, organizations offering learning experiences—in school, out of school, and online—can create pathways to opportunity for all students. As you develop your XPs, playlists, and badges, please consider how they might align with the Remake Learning Competencies, and please consider including that information within the relevant section of your badge on the LRNG platform.

    The Buddy System: If you’re like some help with content development, you are always welcome to reach out to me for support. Meanwhile, it might also be helpful to be connected with another organization that’s participating this summer so you could brainstorm and share ideas about your work. If this is something that interests you, please let me know and I’ll foster these connections.

    School & School Districts: There are several of you who represent schools and school districts, and I imagine that many of you are planning to develop badges to be used during the 2016-2017 school year. As I mentioned in the trainings in April, we plan to host another round of trainings in August for youth-serving organizations who plan to issue digital badges in the fall. If you feel that participating in those trainings will be all the support you need, that’s great. However, if you’d like to work with me and other schools and districts over the summer to develop your plans for the fall, please let me know. I’ll be happy to host some smaller meetings that address the specific needs of schools as they gear up to use digital badges in their curriculum for the fall.

    That’s all for now! I’ll follow up later this week with some more information about upcoming important dates.

    With best wishes for a great week,

    Patricia Monticello Kievlan
    Program Associate, Community Building

    The Sprout Fund
    5423 Penn Avenue | Pittsburgh, PA 15206

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