Who We Are

We are an organization that acts as the bridge between single-site charter schools leaders of color and the resources/funding they need to continue serving students. We provide community, consulting, leadership development and access to education equity stakeholders.

Our History

How We Started

Founded by education advocates and practitioners,  Kim Smith and Trish Dziko in 2016, the two shared a passion for amplifying the voices of charter school leaders of color due to the specific and necessary nature of their work.

Here's What They Found

Access, Funding and Resource Issues

No Collective Influence Akin to White Leaders

No Access to Networks of Privilege and Politics

Difficulty Raising Funds and Securing Facilities

Here's Why It Matters

  • Because 70% of charter school students are of color.
  • Because research is clear on the impact of leaders and teachers of color.
  • Because schools that embody communities are critical lifelines.
Group of black children looking and pointing at open book teacher is reading them
  • An effective component of minority students academic success is a minority principal who serves as a role model for students
  • Students at schools with LOC score significantly higher on state test and are suspended at much lower rates (4.2% less likely)
  • Having just one black teacher in 3rd-5th grade reduced a black student’s probability of dropout by 29%; and by 39% for a low-income black boy

Our Journey

Spring 2014
Kim and Trish Make NCC a Pahara Fellows Project

They always start the NCC story with "It started sitting by the fireplace with a glass of wine." And it's true. Once they decided they were going to work together for the Pahara project, that moment in time was pivotal in the creation of NCC.

Winter 2015
NCC Becomes Official

NCC Becomes a 501(c)3 and receives first round of funding from New Schools Venture Fund.

We set a MISSION: We build leader of color capacity to grow and sustain high-quality charter schools.

And we set a VISION: We envision an education system that centers and values Black and Brown student aspirations by enabling high-quality choice in marginalized communities.

Winter 2018
Launched the Collective Action Committee

22 leaders from first annual Charter Leaders of Color Convening volunteered to be the charter members of the Collective Action Committee designed to create a Collective Action Agenda representative of the needs of charter leaders of color, their staff and students.

Winter 2019
Manati Fellowship Launch

We launched the Manati Fellowship at Salamander Resort & Spa in Virginia with six amazing school leaders.

Winter 2020
Digital Promise & NCC Launch Teacher of Color Initiative

Knowing how important it is for our member schools to have a diverse teaching staff, NCC joined forces with Digital Promise in launching the Teachers of Color Showcase to generate ideas for recruitment and retention of teachers of color.

January 2021
NCC Hires First CEO, Naomi Shelton

Kim and Trish always knew the time would come when NCC needed a full-time leader just as dedicated as we are to the mission of NCC.

After a national search, we are pleased to introduce Naomi Shelton as our first CEO! Read more about Naomi.