National P-3 Institute: FAQs

Q:  What are the dates and location for the 2024 National P-3 Institute?

A:  The Institute will be held October 23-25 in Vail, Colorado. 

Q:  What makes the National P-3 Institute unique?

A: The Institute is a team-based convening that provides intentional, in-depth time to examine ways to strengthen the continuum of learning from pre-school through 3rd grade. Guest speakers and team time focus on improving organizational and systems strategies in ways that meaningfully support young children’s learning and development. Enrollment is limited to 100 people (approximately 13-14 teams). Locations for the Institute are selected to provide a retreat-like setting, encouraging teams to invest in relationship-building, sustained strategic planning, and time to reflect on their shared work.

Q:  Can I attend as an individual?

A:  No, only teams may attend. Recommended team size is 6-8 people. The application will include specific guidance on team composition.

Q: How many people should be on a team?

A: We’ve found that a team size of 5-8 people is big enough to ensure broad representation of diverse perspectives, but not so big that the team becomes unwieldy and unproductive. We do not accept teams with more than 8 members. Overall Institute enrollment is limited to 100 people, which means we accept 13-14 teams.

Q: We are a very small, rural school district. Should we apply?

A: Yes. We accept teams that represent all kinds of different scopes and scale of P-3 work.

Q: How does the competitive review process work?

A: We usually receive 2-3 times more applications than we can accept. A set of 2-3 experts independently review all applications received by the due date, using a rubric that aligns with the questions in the application. The review group meets to compare ratings and to discuss the full slate of applications. In addition to accepting teams that are rated most highly, we also strive to ensure that there are “pods” of teams that share certain characteristics and will be able to learn from one another. For example, we usually accept 3-4 state-level teams; 3-4 large district teams; 3-4 small district teams; and 3-4 regional/multi-district teams.

Q: Is it acceptable for a team member to attend only a portion of the 3-day Institute?

A: No. We request that all team members be able to attend the entire Institute. The Institute is designed to be an intensive professional learning and strategic planning experience. In the past, participant evaluations have highlighted how invaluable and critical the intentional, extended, and semi-structured team strategic planning time was.

Q: We’d like to invite people to join our team who we haven’t worked with before. Is this appropriate?

A: Yes. The team application requires outlining how the team has both a history and a future of working together on P-3 alignment. If you include new partners on your team, please be sure to describe how they will be integrally involved in your future P-3 efforts.

Q: Is it appropriate for our entire team to come from just one agency/district?

A: Yes, but only if both early learning and the early grades are represented. We know that cross-sector work can be necessary within a single agency/district (e.g., when PreK is governed by separate standards and managed by a different department on the org chart than are the K-3 grades). The review team will ensure that accepted applications meaningfully attend to bridging traditionally disparate programs and sectors.

Q: What is the application timeline?

A: Applications will open May 6, 2024 and will be due Monday, July 1, 2024. Accepted teams will be notified by mid-July.

Q:  What are the costs to bring a team?
A: There is a $950/person registration fee (this includes Institute materials and all meals, except one dinner on-your-own). Teams are responsible for paying for their own travel and hotel costs. A hotel room block at government per diem rates ($189/night) has been secured. Once teams have been accepted, the hotel registration link will be provided.

Q:  Where can I find the application?

A: A link to the application can be found on our website here.

A PDF version of the application can be found here: NP-3 Institute Application 2024.

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