The Raising School Leaders initiative is funded by:

Leaders matter.

School leaders are the linchpin of innovation needed to advance the quality of education across the state. That’s why Raise Your Hand Texas and the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation invest in leadership development, coaching, and school turnaround programs that help our state’s public school leaders become stronger educators, and help develop the future of Texas by giving all kids a fair shot at success in school and in life.

Texas public schools serve more than five million students, more than 90 percent of all Texas students. We believe if you give Texas kids access to a free, high-quality education, and fill their schools with truly empowered leaders, they will make a positive, lasting social and economic impact not only in their particular cities, towns and communities, but for the entire state of Texas and beyond.

Raise Your Hand Texas and the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation have sponsored more than 1,000 school leaders (principals, school and district teams, and other public education leaders) across the state to benefit from leadership development and coaching programs coordinated by prestigious universities and education organizations across the country. The goal of these investments is to transform lives, minds, processes, and outcomes within the Texas public school system.


Harvard Graduate School of Education

* Raise Your Hand Texas sponsors principals for training at the Harvard Graduate School of Education Principals’ Center.  

Since 2008, Raise Your Hand Texas has sponsored school leaders to participate in a variety of professional development programs offered through The Principals’ Center at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. These summer institutes inspire, challenge, and empower both new and seasoned education leaders at the helm of different types of schools.

Leadership Symposium

One of the most exciting times is during the annual Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation leadership symposium. Months of meticulous preparation and setup unfold into two days of fellowship, presentations, breakout sessions, and dialogue on all things public education, with local, state, national, and global emphasis. The symposium inspires alumni attendees to broaden their scope of influence beyond their campus to push their thinking and practice beyond its current state.


The Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation has provided millions of dollars in grants to education organizations that are reinventing public education by developing strong principals, aspiring school leaders, and master teachers.

E3 Alliance

As part of our commitment to developing campus leaders in the state of Texas, the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation is offering executive coaching opportunities to Central Texas principals, in partnership with the International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE) and E3 Alliance. The coaching utilizes the E3 Alliance-powered RAISEup Texas program.

Relay Graduate School of Education

The Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation is partnering with the Relay Graduate School of Education in Houston to administer a competency-based program in Texas that provides graduate-level classes to certified teachers, and certification for teaching residents and novice teachers.

Teaching Trust

The Teaching Trust is an innovative model for school leadership focused on developing principals, teachers, and leadership teams by equipping them with the skills and abilities required to move the needle in instructional practices and student achievement. Raise Your Hand Texas provided a grant to the Teaching Trust to support its efforts.

New Leaders

The Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation helps develop talented educators into transformational school leaders by partnering with New Leaders in Arlington ISD.

Previously Funded Grants

Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program (REEP) Business Fellowship

Raise Your Hand provided a grant for principals to attend this one-year business training program for K-12 educators in the Houston area wanting to apply business theories to public school settings. Graduates complete the program well-versed in the business, innovation, organization, and financial management tools they need to develop hands-on solutions to affect powerful change.

Data Wise

Raise Your Hand partnered with the Lubbock Independent School District (LISD) for three years (2012-2015) to implement a data-driven process improvement initiative. Raise Your Hand provided support by sponsoring visits by the campus leadership teams of 13 LISD schools to Harvard University to participate in the Data Wise Improvement Process summer training institutes. During the following school year, the leaders received on-site campus support from Harvard University fellows.

International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE)

Raise Your Hand partnered with the International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE) from 2013-2015 to design a leadership coaching program to support school leaders in organizational leadership, instructional leadership, and teaching.

All of my schooling experience has never given me the opportunity to view things from a business model or perspective. REEP really has redesigned the way I think about education and how we do schooling.
Dr. Bryan Williams, REEP alum
Principal, Spring Branch Middle School - Spring Branch ISD
It’s like, when you go away and you work on yourself and you have this really major experience. How do you make sure you hold on to that feeling, so that you can keep reminding yourself of the purpose and the great structure you learned, so you can benefit thousands of kids from what you worked on for yourself?
Susan Cleveland, Harvard Leadership Program alum
Principal, Boerne Middle School - South Boerne ISD
I have recommended REEP to several principals. It makes you rethink strategies. It’s all about being opened up to other ways of doing things, because you can get in a rut. It’s invigorating and gives you a chance to go out and try some new things.
Sarah Harty, REEP alum
Principal, Cypress Lakes High School - Cy-Fair ISD