Updated on March 31, 2020


Will the 2020 Carnegie Foundation Summit on Improvement in Education be held in San Francisco this April?

Given the strong recommendations that have recently come from local civic leaders and public health officials regarding the spread of COVID-19, we saw no choice other than to move the April 1–3 Summit from a physical location to a virtual space. Plans are underway to design and deliver a digital Summit experience with the same high quality that we have delivered at our six previous in-person annual conferences. Most of the program will be presented live via ZOOM Meetings—we will do our best to manage a schedule that also works across U.S. time zones—while other sessions will be recorded for on-demand viewing. The live sessions will also be recorded so that they may be accessed by those attendees unable to view the program at the scheduled times. On a positive note, this delivery increases access to the number of sessions that attendees can view and the number of people who can view them. Please stay tuned for additional information.

As a registrant for Summit 2020, will I receive a refund?

We are moving to a “Pay What You Will Option” for those that registered for the Summit before March 24th. We would be most appreciative if you can help at any level, which will enable us to make more content more broadly accessible in the weeks and months ahead.

You can now click on this link to indicate how you would like your registration fees to be processed. You can choose between getting a full refund or allowing the Carnegie Foundation to retain a portion of your fee to help us partially defray the costs of the virtual Summit. Your choice will have no bearing on your ability to access the virtual Summit sessions; you are part of our community, and regardless of the choice you make on registration fee refunding, we consider you a registered participant.

The deadline to submit your Pay What You Will request is April 15th. 

Please note that, given the volume of requests and the fact that each refund must be handled manually, we will begin the process of refunding registrations once Summit week and the immediate follow-up activities are completed. We should be able to start this processing around the middle of April. Once again, we appreciate your patience.

As a registrant for Summit 2020, what is the deadline for submitting my Pay What You Will request?

For attendees that registered for the Summit before March 24th, the deadline to submit a “Pay What You Will” request is April 15th.

You can now click on this link to indicate how you would like your registration fees to be processed under the “Pay What You Will” option. You can choose between getting a full refund or allowing the Carnegie Foundation to retain a portion of your fee to help us partially defray the costs of the virtual Summit.


Why is there a fee for registering for the virtual Summit when those who registered for the onsite Summit were able to receive full refunds yet still participate?

To provide you with some context, like many other organizations right now, COVID-19 is extracting a cost on us. Here at the foundation, where planning the Summit and developing its program is a year-long effort, we are making a substantial commitment to bring the Summit’s learning to our community in a virtual format that is accessible to you and your staff post-Summit as well.

Because we were no longer offering the place-based event that had been “purchased” by registrants, after careful thought, we decided to offer a “Pay What You Will” refund option for their registration fee—basically, no refund, a full refund, or something in between. However, to demonstrate our commitment to our growing improvement community, we wanted all registrants to have access to the virtual Summit sessions, regardless of their PWYW choice.

Those registering for the re-imagined virtual Summit will be receiving four days of live sessions, three keynotes, and post-Summit access to many additional recorded on-demand sessions, the recordings of the live sessions and keynotes, and poster presentations. We believe that the minimal fee we are charging is well worth the content that will be received by participants.

Will the date of the Summit remain April 1–3?

The Summit will kick-off on March 31 with a live opening keynote from Tony Bryk. Breakout sessions and keynotes are scheduled for April 1—3. We will contact registered attendees weekly with more details about the revised Summit schedule.

Will the site visits be rescheduled?

Because pre-conference courses are full-day, immersive experiences, we have decided not to include virtual pre-conference courses. All pre-conference registrants will be refunded their pre-conference registration fee.

How will the virtual Summit be different from the place-based Summit?

Unfortunately, not all of the sessions will be offered. However, we still plan to include live presentations, breakout sessions, and keynotes, and there will also be available recorded on-demand offerings for viewing on your own or with a group of your colleagues. More details regarding the schedule and logistics will be available next week as final plans take shape.

I’m a registered attendee. How will I access the digital sessions and activities?

The Summit mobile app and its web-browser version will remain command central for the Summit. If you are a registered attendee and have not yet downloaded the Summit app, you can find instructions on how to do so here. Please note that the Summit app has not yet been updated to reflect the new virtual Summit schedule.

Live Summit sessions will be held via Zoom Meetings. If you have not used Zoom before, please download the plug-in application in advance of the Summit. If your operating system does not support Zoom, please contact the Summit Zoom Support email: summithelp@caregiefoundation.org.

You can learn more about using Zoom here. We will also have additional Zoom resources for registered attendees—please stay tuned for more information.


March 31–April 3, 2020