Rising Leaders Initiative

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Rising Leaders Initiative Logo and 4 high school students

All too often in education policy, the voices of students—the next generation of leaders—are drowned out by special interests. We're looking to help change that starting with 10 charter high school students who want to improve education policy that directly affects them and their classmates.

The application process for the Rising Leaders class for the 2023-24 academic year is now closed. See the participants in the 2022-23 cohort.

About the Program 

The Rising Leaders Initiative is a one-year advocacy training program for charter high school students who want to become active participants in education policy decisions in their local community and state and develop skills to guide their educational and professional pathways.


We will recruit a diverse group of charter high school students who want to advocate for better education policies in their communities and give back to the next generation of students.


Students will participate in monthly virtual workshops to deepen their knowledge on the functions of civic participation, education advocacy, coalition building and develop leadership and public speaking skills.


Students will create and lead an advocacy club in their school to advocate for their charter school and develop impactful policy initiatives to address an urgent public education issue affecting their school or community.


  • High school students enrolled at a U.S. charter school in the 2023-24 academic year
  • Good academic standing
  • Demonstrated commitment to others through volunteering and service to their school/community.
  • An interest in advocacy, leadership, and government

Program Duration

Students are expected to participate in all scheduled virtual meetings and trainings. Meetings/trainings will be held monthly from September 2023-June 2024.


Students will be eligible for a $3,000 stipend for their participation in the program. Advocacy clubs will also receive operating funds.

Application Timeline

Our application selection committee reviews all applications. Each application is reviewed holistically by two members of the selection committee. We strive to select talented and diverse students who demonstrate a strong interest in the Rising Leaders program and a commitment to others through service. Students who meet these requirements will be invited to participate in a virtual interview with the National Alliance for consideration for admission to the program. Our goal is to accept ten students for the 2023-24 academic year to join the program. 


If you have any questions or would like further information, send an email to risingleaders@publiccharters.org

Interested in supporting the program? Contact Kyle Breckenridge at kyle@publiccharters.org or make a charitable donation