Operating Principles

Key Operating Ideas

Trellis Foundation’s approach to grantmaking reflects several key ideas involving educational systems, collaboration, and equity:

  • Education systems should be focused on meeting the needs of students and supporting their success, as they themselves define it.
  • Addressing inequities in educational outcomes requires acknowledging system failures and re-imagining systems that support success for low-income students and students of color.
  • Catalyzing impact requires action in addition to grantmaking, including meaningful collaboration, knowledge building, convening, and other means of drawing attention to persistent disparities, as well as driving additional focus and commitment for key systems actors to dismantle inequitable systems.
  • Increased economic and social mobility, particularly for populations who have not been well-served by educational systems, are among the long-term outcomes the Foundation is working to achieve.

These ideas have informed philanthropic giving for Trellis Foundation—even prior to its official launch as an independent entity. They help to shape our mission, values, and strategy.