On January 11, 2023, nearly 150 executives and senior leaders from 75 partners came together at the Future Ready Leadership Table event to provide strategy and drive forward the work of our  community Future Ready Bexar County Plan

The Future Ready Leadership Table oversees progress of this plan as we strive to reach our collective North Star goal of increasing enrollment of Bexar County’s High School graduates to 70% by 2030 – a goal that can be accomplished if an additional 5,000 students from our community enroll into a postsecondary or credential program.

During workgroup breakout sessions, leaders from pre-K12 and higher education met to align shared messaging strategies and commitments for the class of 2030, youth development leaders discussed ensuring access to quality programs for all young people and a group of fundraising and corporate executives met to discuss better alignment of investment within our community. 

Prior to these breakout work sessions, the world-renowned educational organization Harlem’s Children’s Zone (HCZ) President, Geoffrey Canada, joined Mayor Ron Nirenberg in addressing these leaders in a plenary session. 

Canada was in San Antonio alongside HCZ CEO Kwame Owusu-Kesse and a a delegation of eight representatives on a two-day excursion where they met with and shared next practices with Future Ready Partners such as East Central ISD, the Alamo Colleges District, Corporate Partners for Racial Equity and Communities in Schools- San Antonio. 

Data Point


Postsecondary enrollment rate for Bexar County African American high school graduates from the Class of 2020.

This is 2% higher than the state average.

Meet UP Partnership’s K12 and Justice Team​

UP Partnership’s K12 and Justice team works with community partners through the My Brother’s Keeper San Antonio (MBKSA) network and the Restorative Practices Collaborative (RPC) to scale healing, restorative practices and programming for boys and young men of color. The team consists of John Jacobs “JJ”, Director of K12 and Justice, Suzette Solorzano, Senior Manager of Coaching and Facilitation, and Tyler Radwin, Manager of Community Engagement. Read more about them here.

Restorative Practices Collaborative Cohort 3 Kicks off

On January 19, cohort 3 of the Restorative Practices Collaborative (RPC) kicked-off at the Victory Center at San Antonio College. Subsequently, the cohort will meet eight times, including the February session that was held at San Antonio Independent School District’s office. RPC works to move Bexar County’s K12 and Justice ecosystems from a punitive to a restorative paradigm, as well as broadening the pathways to postsecondary success for justice-involved youth, opportunity youth and foster youth.

Cohort 3 has approximately 55 participants, the largest cohort of RPC to date, from East Central ISD, Judson ISD, Harlandale ISD and San Antonio ISD. One of the current cohort participants has immediately applied what they have learned and has since credited these practices with causing a “complete turn around in the classroom,” citing dramatic changes in behavior, improved classroom engagement, and improved test scores.

The work being done by this collaborative was recently also highlighted at a national Department of Justice conference and the work by Future Ready partners Empower House and San Antonio ISD’s Rhodes Elementary was recently featured in this article

UP Partnership joins forces with Search Institute, a national research organization, to augment Excel Academy work

In February, UP Partnership announced its partnership with Search Institute, a Minnesota-based positive youth development and equity-focused organization, to collaboratively expand the framework of Excel Academy to a national scale. Through a $1.6 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation, a new three-year framework that helps organizations to cultivate relationships – and character-rich climates has been developed and piloted with the latest cohort of the leadership program that started last September. For those interested in further developing their developmental relationship leadership skills, stay tuned soon for the upcoming Excel Academy application cycle.

Future Ready Joint Leadership Table

Cross-sector leaders and youth leaders representing them came together at Family Services Association’s The Neighborhood Place to continue to drive forward the Future Ready Bexar County Plan’s impact in an intragenerational manner. The table discussed action commitments per organization and underwent training over two of the developmental relationship elements: expressing care and sharing power. Contact UP Partnership Chief Impact and Strategy Officer, Emily Calderón Galdeano, at for more information.

Legacy Leadership Initiative brings mental health strategies to the community

In partnership with Communities in Schools San Antonio, The Ecumenical Center, and District 3 Councilwoman Phyllis Viagran, UP Partnership convened 15 young people and their parents to discuss mental health, coping strategies and community resources. It was a powerful event that ended with a drumming circle and a reflection on the day’s learnings. Learn more about the Legacy Leadership Initiative here.

Request for Presenters:
Future Ready Practitioner Conference on May 22

UP Partnership is looking for presenters for the Future Ready Practitioner Conference on May 22 at St. Mary’s University. The theme is Relationships are The Work, and focuses on aspects of Developmental Relationships. For some examples of focus areas please check out the link here. Proposals are due by March 24th, 2023 and can be submitted here. Contact UP Partnership Senior Manager of Community Engagement, Jonathan Weaver, at for more information on the event.  

New Horizons and Opportunities Grant Request for Proposals

Through support from the San Antonio Area Foundation made possible by Corporate Partners for Racial Equity (CPRE), UP Partnership has released a grant application specifically aimed toward providing campus-based restorative justice training and capacity building for school districts and their alternative schools. For more information contact, John Jacobs, Director of K12 and Justice, at

Communications Council on May 11 

UP Partnership’s Future Ready Communications Council meeting for cross-sector communications and marketing representatives will meet on May 11 At the last meeting, Council members discussed the various actions organizations are taking to create more opportunities for postsecondary enrollment for Bexar County’s students. Contact UP Partnership Director of Communications, Jeannette Garcia, at for more information.

Is your institution an official Future Ready partner yet?

It’s not too late to become a partner in the Future Ready Bexar County community-wide strategic plan. Please email UP Partnership CEO, Ryan Lugalia-Hollon, at to join the more than 75 institutions that have already signed on to ensure Bexar County’s young peoples are future ready!


Youth voices needed for city-wide mental health survey

Future Ready partner City of San Antonio have launched the second annual SASpeakUp survey focusing on teen mental health for young people between the ages of 12 and 19. The survey will be available for responses through April 9, 2023, at

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