About the Model Innovation City Equity Grant

The opportunity gap begins at birth. Nearly half of students entering kindergarten in the U.S. are at risk of failure. School districts that help families work with their children before they enroll in their schools provide the literacy foundation needed for success in school and life.

Purpose of Grant

The Model Innovation City Equity Grant is provided to school districts and cities that are interested in creating a citywide literacy initiative to level the playing field for all students by accelerating kindergarten readiness and 3rd grade reading proficiency. Footsteps2Brilliance has over a decade of experience creating turnkey, community-wide literacy initiatives that have a lasting impact on parental engagement and student success.

Collective Impact Model

Districts awarded a grant will be inducted into a Model Innovation City cohort to work together and share best practices. A Model Innovation City creates a collective impact model that organizes all stakeholders around early literacy by creating Literacy Collaboratives and Literacy Ambassadors. During the 2020-21 pandemic, Model Innovation Cities saw an increase in both usage and academic achievement in part because they had a community and digital infrastructure already in place.

Size of Grant Awards

Over the past 12 years, Footsteps2Brilliance has awarded over $100 million in Model Innovation City Equity Grants. The size of the grant is determined by the number of students served. Grant winners receive five years of free community access to proven literacy solutions, accessible without an internet connection after download.

Application Deadline

Grant applications can be submitted from July 1st, 2023 through December 31, 2023

Who Can Apply?

K-12 School Districts, Public Libraries, Non-Profits, Cities and Municipalities

How it works

Start Application

Click “apply” and download your application. Complete the application and submit to grants@footsteps2brilliance.com


Meeting with Superintendent and Executive Leadership Team responsible for implementation.

Grant Award

If selected for a grant award, your district and community will be a part of the White House Initiative and provided access.

Our Mission

At Footsteps2Brilliance we believe that if you eliminate the preparation gap, all students have the ability to be successful in school and life. It’s for this reason that we unite communities around a unified vision for early literacy.

Increased Participation

Increase in student participation during
2020-21 COVID-19 pandemic.

Higher Scores

Students who use Footsteps2Brilliance 15 minutes a day
meet or exceed state benchmarks

Awards and Achievements

What Leading Educators Say

caret-down caret-up caret-left caret-right
Dr. Barbara Nemko Superintendent, Napa County Office of Education

"Footsteps2Brilliance is a breakthrough program that has the potential to transform public education."

Dr. Diego Ochoa Superintendent, San Manteo-Foster City United School District

“One of the most powerful components of Footsteps2Brilliance is my ability, as a superintendent, to pull a report every day that tells me who is using the program and for how many minutes, what components of the program they’re using, how much stamina they have in the program, and then what their comprehension is at the end of the use of the program.”

San Mateo-Foster City School District - Equitable Communication Strategies
Superintendent Diego Ochoa discusses his innovative strategies for reaching all families and providing them with the resources needed to help their children read.
We are the breakthrough literacy solution that accelerates student learning. Our unique mobile platform makes digital early learning a fun experience for teachers, parents, and especially students.
In just eight months, Conner says Middletown’s children have mastered a combined 10.8 million words and is excited to see the results when school opens today.
Bilingual Covington Invests in its Kids - Joe Meyer, Mayor of Covington City
Big problems require big solutions. So when Covington, Ky. – a diverse city of 41,000 people located in Cincinnati’s shadow – realized it needed to better prepare its children to hit the ground ...