School ReTool

NHLI and the State of New Hampshire have been seeking ways to support our building leaders in cultivating change within their schools.  Last year we had our first cohort of School Retool, and it was a great success for the participants. This year, we are excited to be able to offer this opportunity again, with the generous support of the Nellie Mae Education Foundation.  
This year's cohort will run from February through March/April.  Each principal or assistant principal will attend four in-person training sessions led by Stanford's d. School.  School Retool is structured to provide opportunities for administrators to try small "hacks" (innovations) within their buildings and then work collaboratively with their facilitators and cohort to build upon these successes. 
This professional development will be covered 60% through Nellie Mae.  Districts will be responsible for the additional cost (approximately $1,000 each with 20 participants).  There are ongoing opportunities for collaboration with both this cohort and other School Retool cohorts around the country, as well.
Please contact Jonathan Vander Els  at if you have any questions, or if you are interested in either participating or having administrators in your district participate.  This is for new administrators and also veteran administrators who are looking at professional development geared toward moving toward and/or supporting a competency-based and personalized learning environment.​
What is School ReTool?

School ReTool is a professional learning fellowship that helps school leaders redesign school culture using small, scrappy experiments called 'hacks.’ With experienced leaders and coaches, participants learn about deeper learning, change processes, and the hack mindset, an approach to change that involves quick, small interventions and a willingness to try, fail, and learn. Former participants talk about School ReTool and hacking for change in this short video. Learn more about deeper learning here.

What will School ReTool do for me?

School ReTool will give you tools and resources for jumpstarting change at your school, a cohort of New Hampshire school leaders engaged in similar work, and support from School ReTool coaches.

What will School ReTool do for my school?

School ReTool will create small tangible changes in your school, help create a change mindset, and lay the groundwork for larger changes - or support larger changes that are already happening.

What will participating in School ReTool entail?
  • 4 full-day School Retool workshops at a central location
  • 1 full day of shadowing a student at your school
  • Approximately 1-4 hours per week of other School Retool activities, hacks, and coaching between workshops

Scroll down the homepage of the School ReTool website for more specifics.

Who created School ReTool and who brought it to New Hampshire?

IDEO and the Stanford created it (find out more about them here). The Nellie Mae Foundation and NHLI are bringing it to New Hampshire.

Photography by Romana Vysatova