Nov 28, 2017
The Big Lift is a collective impact initiative extending from preschool to third grade in San Mateo County, California, that aims to increase reading achievement. This report is part of an evaluation of the initiative and examines collective impact strategies and components of the Big Lift. It serves as the final report for the implementation study that focused on the collective impact design of the initiative and the Big Lift activity pillars.
The Big Lift is a collective impact initiative extending from preschool to third grade in San Mateo County, California. The collective impact effort consists of people and organizations from various sectors uniting to tackle a single, complicated societal problem — in this case, third grade reading achievement. The initiative is a partnership of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the San Mateo County Office of Education, and the County of San Mateo with the support of dozens of community organizations and school districts. Launched in 2012, the initiative aims to boost children's reading proficiency by the third grade through four different types of activities, called "pillars": (1) High-Quality Preschool, (2) Summer Learning, (3) School Attendance, and (4) Family Engagement. The first year of program implementation was school year 2015–2016, in which four school districts received funding and support from the Big Lift to implement the four pillars. In the subsequent year (2016–2017), three additional districts received funding and support.
The RAND Corporation is conducting a multiphase evaluation of the initiative, including an implementation study of the effort and descriptive analyses focused on the outcomes of children who participated in Big Lift programs. This report serves as the final report for the implementation study that focused on the collective impact design of the initiative and the Big Lift activity pillars. Results from key informant interviews, a survey about collaboration, and focus groups are presented in this report.
Collective Impact Approach
Pillar Strategy Implementation
Successes and Challenges of the Big Lift
Summary and Recommendations
Wilder Collaboration Items
Focus Group Protocols