Smith explains that venture philanthropy means investing in ventures that lead to greater changes in the overall system to improve education for kids. The entrepreneur is a part of a much larger system and the aim is to leverage the investments to provide the greatest possible impact. This strategy has led to three key activities at New Schools: the creation of a network to generate more hybrid leaders and inform policy makers, a charter accelerator fund to create charter schools, and a performance accelerator fund to help schools become performance-oriented.
Kim Smith lectures on Entrepreneurship for Stanford University students, October 19, 2003. Kim Smith is co-founder and CEO of NewSchools Venture Fund, which she established in 1998 to transform public education by supporting education entrepreneurs. In NewSchools, Kim created a new "hybrid" approach to investing in social entrepreneurs. NewSchools uses grants, loans and equity investments to support a portfolio that includes nonprofit and for-profit entrepreneurs who are building sustainable, scalable education ventures. In this Stanford lecture, she talks about venture philanthropy, fixing problems in K-12 education and how entrepreneurs must lead people from radically different sectors.