Model & Strategy

Transcend is dedicated to accelerating breakthrough innovation in school model design, to cultivate students who will thrive in and transform the 21st century. Transcend partners with visionary school operators to engage in deep, rigorous research and development (R&D) to create, codify, and ultimately spread innovative learning environments.

Transcend assembles world‐class R&D talent (both individuals and organizations) with expertise in a range of areas. These talent pods provide the external R&D capacity that is often much needed, while also helping to grow, unleash, and orchestrate the capacity that already exists within our school partner’s leadership, staff, students, and community. Transcend anticipates engaging in 2-4 school redesign projects/year, with the ultimate goal of creating multiple breakthrough school models that can scale to dramatically improve outcomes for all students.

At a Glance
Founded: 2015
Location of work: Domestic, Northeast, West Coast, Midwest, Southwest, Southeast
1036 W. 20th Place, Third Floor
Chicago, IL 60608
Building beyond the limits of school design
Aylon Samouha of Transcend
Meet Aylon Samouha

Aylon Samouha has 5 years of experience in school model design & build – currently with the charter network Achievement First leading Greenfield Design, previously with Rocketship Education as Chief Schools Officer. Prior, Aylon held roles in senior leadership at Teach For America and at SCORE! Educational Centers.

Co-founder Jeff Wetzler has 10 years of experience in national executive leadership at Teach For America managing design, research, innovation, and strategy; and 9 years at the Monitor Group.  He holds a doctorate in Education from Columbia Teacher’s College; and sits on the Board of Uncommon Schools (NY board); New ClassroomsInnovation Partners; and the National Academy of Advanced Teacher Education.


Transcend expects to reach hundreds of thousands of students over the next decade with models that they create. The organization’s ambition is to ensure that student performance and growth across academics and habits of success will be vastly better than current baselines.


Transcend is currently partnered with 16 school operators across 5 school innovation projects, collectively serving over 7,000 students.