National Opportunity to Learn Network

Schott’s Opportunity to Learn Network (OTL) unites a nationwide coalition of Schott grantees and allied organizations working to secure a high quality public education for all students.

By creating a space to highlight and celebrate grassroots organizing, share success stories and provide resources, OTL strives to create real and substantial change in our public education system. OTL advocates for supports­-based education reform, one that provides all students with access to crucial resources and opportunities such as early education, wraparound supports, fair school discipline, well­-supported teachers, and equitable school funding. To support our network of advocates and organizers, OTL provides regular updates on current grantee campaigns, publishes policy guides, infographics and other resources, and hosts summits and other network building events, all of which can be found below.

The Latest from the OTL Network

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Tuesday July 2, 2013 –

Small class size isn't about protecting teachers' jobs or making their work easier -- it's about providing every student with quality attention in the classroom. Steve Zimmer, Board Member of the Los Angeles Unified School District and a former teacher, asks why we tolerate or dismiss crowded public school classrooms when charters and private schools use small class sizes as a selling point?

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Thursday June 27, 2013 –

Members of Chicago Students Organizing to Save Our Schools speak out against school closures and education budget cuts at a Board of Education meeting – and are kicked out for speaking truth to power. 

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Saturday June 15, 2013 –

Zakiyah Ansari, a parent organizers with the NY-based Alliance for Quality Education, discusses the importance of engaging parents, students, teachers and community members in the education reform process. Current policies, which focus on high-stakes testing and accountability, overlook the needs of struggling students and under-resourced schools. Advocates and community organizers across the country, particularly students, are fighting back and demanding that their voices be heard as part of a growing national movement for change.

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Tuesday June 4, 2013 –

How do you explain the opportunity gap to someone who isn't familiar with the education debate? Just show them this new video from the OTL Campaign! "A Special Message to Grown Ups, Love Kids" is a video introduction to the OTL Campaign that we developed with the help of the phenomenal video production studio SoulPancake. The video provides a simple explanation of why all kids deserve the same resources and opportunities to learn.

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Tuesday May 28, 2013 –

In 2006, the Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE) won a major fair funding lawsuit against the State of New York, and policymakers promised to institute a more equitable school funding system. Though the state has since walked back that promise due to the recession and years of cuts to the education budget, it's worth understanding just how CFE made it's successful case. Michael Rebell, one of the lawyers on the CFE case, explains how his team argued that for all students to meet state standards, the state must commit to providing them with equitable funding. Anything less was a violation of the state's constitutional obligation to provide students with "a sound, basic education."

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Wednesday April 3, 2013 –

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants to close 54 schools — closings that disproportionately affect low-income and Black students. Parents, teachers, and students are fighting back.

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Wednesday March 13, 2013 –

The video tells the story of Adelanto, California where a well-funded, outside group "Parent Revolution" came to town and instead of working to improve the schools tricked parents with false promises, bitterly divided the community, and disrupted the education of young children.

"The video makes clear that that parent trigger laws, pending in 14 states, are not a magic wand that improves education -- there is no magic wand," said Roger Hickey of the Education Opportunity Network. "Schools need better resources, engaged parents, good teachers and a supportive community. What schools do not need is divisive campaigns that mislead parents and disappoints parents," he said.

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Wednesday March 6, 2013 –

Dr. Michael Fullan provided the keynote speech at AQE's Opportunity to Learn policy conference titled "Averting Educational Crisis: Successful Strategies for NY" on Feb. 11 in Albany, NY. For more presentations and materials from the conference visit

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Wednesday February 20, 2013 –

This fantasic video from OTL ally Alliance for Quality Education asks the very simple question: Will you fund our schools?

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Tuesday December 18, 2012 –

Who better to talk about the challenges and opportunities young women of color face in education than the young women themselves? As part of an ongoing project, the Wellesley Centers for Women partnered with Boston-based Teen Voices to produce a short film featuring teens "as the experts and agents of their own learning experiences, offering examples of effective strategies and solutions for closing the opportunity gap." The goal of the project is to promote public discourse about barriers to educational equity for girls of color and push for change in education policy and practice.