“The Yidan Prize money will support our work on educator preparation building on the science of learning and development,
very much informed by NUA’s approach!”  —Linda Darling Hammond, 2022

“Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to visit classrooms in Clifford School’s National Urban Alliance for Effective Education (NUA) Lab School program about this priority initiative of the Redwood City School District. I am still basking in the glow of that inspiring visit. Not only were the students fully engaged in their learning, but the classrooms exuded joy and purpose.”  Read the complete message.
Nancy Magee, Superintendent, San Mateo County Office of Education, Nov. 2022
RCSD Clifford Lab School: NUA & RCSD awarded 2023 SMCSBA Kent Award.

Linda Darling Hammond, former board member of the National Urban Alliance (NUA), was awarded the Yidan Prize Laureate for Education Research which includes $4 million in recognition of her work.
Yidan Prize • Stanford University Article • 2022
Dr. Darling Hammond on a short video about NUA.

Professional Learning Cycles
In-Person – Virtual – Hybrid

“Give light and people will find the way.”
—Ella Baker

NUA Professional Learning Model

The National Urban Alliance partnership collaborations are defined by NUA’s steps of implementation. Go to the National Urban Alliance Professional Learning Model webpage for a three phase overview of the NUA implementation model including the educators, school leaders, coaches, district leaders, full staff and students.

Watch the video below of The Pedagogy of Confidence in action demonstrating the impact of NUA professional development on teacher practice and classroom culture. 

This video of The Pedagogy of Confidence in action demonstrates the impact of NUA professional development on teacher practice and classroom culture. 
Watch more about Redwood City School District.

Let’s Get Started
Reach out to our Founder and President Eric Cooper and Executive Director Stefanie C. Baker to schedule a conversation about collaborating with The National Urban Alliance (NUA). NUA brings the Pedagogy of Confidence® model to your district for real change and authentic results in realizing the potential of all students and educators. We work with you to develop a cycle for professional learning (Professional Learning Cycles) that support educators’ professional development.

Eric Cooper, Founder and President of National Urban Alliance.
“I am lifted up by the elders… the responsibility that we share following in their footsteps… it spoke to me… humbly I stand before you… I strive to be a neural educator…”

Whole School NUA Collaboration – 2023
“Our partnership with Robert Price and the National Urban Alliance over the past three years has been pivotal in developing sustainability with the High Operational Practices that are embedded throughout our curriculum and daily routines. Fair Oaks staff have been on an NUA journey that began with a monthly cohort to both examine and increase our capacity to ensure equitable learning experiences for all students.

As a result of this work, our teachers recognize that NUA is not about isolated strategies for teaching particular concepts, but rather, we have had a philosophical shift in how we activate student voice and create equitable instruction that is purposeful across the curriculum. 

Through this work our staff has made monumental gains in focusing on student outcomes, including our students’ use of schema to make connections and think critically about curriculum.”
—the paragraphs above and the complete reflection are from the Fair Oaks Leadership Team.
Click hear to Read, Watch Video and Learn More

Educational Support Professionals (ESPs) at Fair Oaks Elementary sharing reflections – 5 minute cut. Click hear to see and learn more.

The National Urban Alliance (NUA) collaborates with schools and school districts through our Professional Learning Cycles.  Professional Learning Cycles include:

  • classroom demonstrations with students;
  • educator professional development sessions;
  • professional development with district coaches;
  • professional development with district leaders;
  • professional development with support staff;
  • professional development with school boards;
  • equity committee development;
  • community engagement;
  • and sessions designed specifically to amplify student voices.

“Why do you think those go together?”
—During Inductive Categorization of Questions

Powerful Questions in a Fair Oaks Elementary School third grade classroom part of the National Urban Alliance (NUA) and Osseo Area Schools collaboration. 
Watch more about the Osseo Area Schools (MN)

Learn more about current and recent collaborations with National Urban Alliance:

“When ‘I’ is replaced with ‘We’, even illness becomes wellness”
—Malcolm X

Pedagogy of Confidence Protocol
The Pedagogy of Confidence® Observation Protocol provides district and school partners with the tool to monitor progress from the beginning level of PoC implementation (Innovation), to developing PoC practices (Building) toward deeper and sustainable implementation (Sustainability).  The PoC Protocol explicates the 7 High Operational Practices with indicators leading toward sustainable practices. The full document delineates the Essential Criteria and each of the three levels of PoC implementation for each of the 7 High Operational Practices.

Clifford School grades 4/5 team.
“…the level of student engagement… for distance learning and when we move back into the traditional classroom settings…
using the Pedagogical Flow Map with priming and processing… take it up a notch…
…the district has done an amazing job…

Watch more about Redwood City School District.

The Pedagogy of Confidence
Belief and Belonging

“Change the input and the brain changes accordingly.”
—Reuven Feuerstein

The Pedagogy of Confidence® approach to learning and teaching is based on the fearless expectation that all students are capable of high intellectual performances when provided High Operational Practices™ that motivate self-directed learning and self-actualization. The Pedagogy of Confidence® model, developed by Dr. Yvette Jackson, Senior Scholar and previously CEO of National Urban Alliance (NUA), is the model that is a grounding focus of NUA’s collaborations. The High Operational Practices (HOPs) are:

  • Identifying and activating student strengths
  • Building relationships
  • Eliciting high intellectual performances
  • Providing enrichment
  • Integrating prerequisites for academic learning
  • Situating learning in the lives of students
  • Amplifying student voice
“We are innately wired to be motivated…”

These seven High Operational Practices are the fulcrum around which the gifted education of the Pedagogy of Confidence revolves, gearing the objectives for each practice to facilitate students exploring and acting on their potential to produce the high intellectual performances that can motivate self-directed learning, self-actualization, and self-transcendence. The inherent strategies and actions used to identify and build on strengths, provide enrichment and create schema that connects to a student’s cultural frame of reference inherent in gifted education serve to enhance comprehension that results in strengthened competence, confidence, resilience and high intellectual performances (Jackson, 2017).
Pedagogy of Confidence Action Guide online at www.pedagogyofconfidence.net

“I have seen the fabulous outcome of National Urban Alliance’s work over many many years. It opens up higher order thinking and performance for all kids in extraordinary ways. It is the kind of work I want to see happening all over the state.”
Linda Darling Hammond
Learning Policy Institute • President and CEO
California State Board of Education • President
January 2020

“We claim what we feel we deserve.”
—David Whyte

Start with the title… Cultivating Equity Consciousness… we are talking about our children. They are beings with these amazing brains.”

“In our work and in our living, we must recognize that difference is a reason for celebration and growth, rather than a reason for destruction.”
—Audre Lorde

An Author and Artist’s Perspective
“A sad, happy, moving, troubling, inspirational, humorous and brutal account of the people and experiences that formed this exceptionally well-formed man… (Tyler Merritt) … subtly and kindly reminds us of how much we have in common and that assumptions are made by fools.”
 ―Jimmy Kimmel

“…seeing the energy of the teachers, seeing the heartbeat in true desire and passion to help students… it was inspiring… equipping teachers to serve teachers effectively gives me hope for the future…”
Spoken word artist, author, activist Tyler Merritt speaks on the purpose and passion with NUA collaborations.

Self Direction
Self Actualization

“Students must have initiative; they should not be mere imitators. They must learn to think and act for themselves, and be free.”
—Cesar Chavez

“What is Student Voice” as shared by elementary and middle school students across a San Francisco Bay Area school district.
Watch more video on Amplifying Student Voices.

Amplifying Student Voice focuses on students exploring, understanding and collaboratively sharing the purpose and methods of equity consciousness with peers as learners across all content areas. This is grounded with a focus on their cultural frame of reference. Amplifying Student Voice focuses on using High Operational Practices for High Intellectual Performance with NUA’s 4 Cs:

  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Creative Thinking
  • Critical Thinking

High School

Amplifying Student Voice using The Pedagogy of Confidence High Operational Practices.
Watch more Newark Public School student videos.
Amplifying Student Voice including student reflections and models in action.
Watch more Newark Public School student videos.

Middle School and Elementary School

What We Value
Amplifying Student Voice using The Pedagogy of Confidence High Operational Practices. creating videos.
Reflections from Film Teams
Amplifying Student Voice using The Pedagogy of Confidence High Operational Practices creating videos.

“No significant learning occurs without a significant relationship.”
—James Comer

Amplifying Student Voice in action with elementary and middle school students in a San Francisco Bay Area school district. The Redwood City students model Student Voice in action while sharing reflections.

“There’s no excuse for the young people not knowing who the heroes or heroines are or were.”
—Nina Simone

“When the synapses in my brain connect, then I learn… can you stand and do it with us…”

When Students Become Teachers
The National Urban Alliance’s “radical but refreshing approach” to involving students in teacher professional development is featured in this CNN news feature, which was hosted by CNN education contributor Steve Perry and broadcast on Anderson Cooper 360.

It is about hearing the student voices on the ‘why’ and the ‘how’.

National Urban Alliance (NUA)
and Buffalo Public Schools

NUA previously partnered with eight Buffalo K-8 schools through the office of Office of Strategic Planning & Innovation between the school year 2014-18.

NUA’s Professional Development with Buffalo City Schools included training for educators, support staff, in classroom demonstrations, instructional coaches and site-based Instructional leaders. The Course of Study was designed around the High Operational Practices of the Pedagogy of Confidence™.

The video clips provide an understanding of NUA’s collaboration with Buffalo Public School 61 through the observations and reflections of administrators, teachers and most importantly the students amplifying their voices.
See more on the collaboration including short video clips with school leaders, coaches, students and educators.