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Center for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS) Network

location_on United States

Empowering the Movement by Scaling Experiential Learning Globally

Education needs a redesign in approach and outcomes through the integration of real-world learning to prepare students for the future. CAPS Network allows a K-12 school or district to leverage a robust ecosystem of innovative educators who are currently connecting students to professionals through a shared framework. There is nothing quite like CAPS Network - it's a family committed to change.

HundrED 2023


HundrED has selected this innovation to

HundrED Global Collection 2023

Web presence






Target group
January 12th, 2023
I've just got to tell you, for those that are interested, it's a mind-blowing experience

About the innovation

Why did you create this innovation?

The CAPS Network was formed to connect nodes of innovation in K-12 schools and develop an ecosystem approach to sharing best practices, troubleshooting challenges, and celebrating successes. Breaking down formerly competitive - and in some cases nonexistent - relationships between school districts is allowing for rapid prototyping of curriculum and acceleration of profession-based learning.

How does your innovation work in practice?

At CAPS, students are placed in a culture where they are treated as adults, own their learning, and make mistakes without punishment. Nearly all students come from learning environments that place the teacher in the front of the room as the ultimate authority figure. CAPS works to tear down that hierarchical culture and rebuild the learning experience as one that is collaborative, purposeful, active and authentic. Students drive the experience, with adults a coach and guide, going where the students lead.

Students work in a professional area of interest. Examples include bioscience, engineering, healthcare, innovation and technology. The curriculum adjusts to meet the passions of the students. Recent examples of student-client projects include the construction of a sensory chair for children with autism that was licensed internationally, a data analytics solution that saved Fortune 500 company over $2 million, and an app created to connect those with mental illness with supports.

How has it been spreading?

The CAPS framework has been spreading rapidly through our affiliation model. The original Blue Valley CAPS program launched in 2009, and a few pilot affiliates started between 2012-2014. In 2015, the Blue Valley School District created the CAPS Network to connect nodes of educational innovation. As a result, there are currently over 12,000 students and over 20,000 alumni of CAPS programs. The network includes 81 affiliate programs and spans 21 states in the U.S. and three additional countries: Canada, India, and Kuwait. In total, over 140 school systems provide students the CAPS experience. The speed of scale resulted in the 2021 formation of CAPS Network, Inc. - a nonprofit organization - to provide additional foundation support for this dynamic education movement.

If I want to try it, what should I do?

We love connecting with others that share our purpose. Anyone interested in partnering should explore the CAPS Network website at https://yourcapsnetwork.org.

CAPS growth metrics are powerful and undeniable. In a recent survey completed by over 2,000 students, confidence jumped significantly in 12 categories of soft skills. Full results at https://tinyurl.com/CAPSNETF21.

Impact & scalability

HundrED Academy Reviews
This innovation creates a curriculum that meets the passion of students. This profound model brings out the creative best of every learner.
CAPS can be integrated into all education levels, especially in secondary and higher where education is targeted at orienting students professionally. Acquiring life skills and building multi-faceted personalities prepare citizens holistically.
- Academy member
Academy review results
High Impact
Low Scalability
High Impact
High Scalability
Low Impact
Low Scalability
Low Impact
High Scalability
Read more about our selection process

Spread of the innovation

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