Our mission is to empower youth by providing technology and support to educators building learner-centered systems.

We’re accomplishing this by providing schools with a day-to-day learning platform built around voice and choice, real-world experience, and authentic assessment of essential skills.

We believe that this can lead to an inclusive, equitable society where the gifts and abilities of every person are acknowledged, nurtured and applied to solve the most pressing challenges we face as a global community.

Our History

Since 2015, our team of professionals from education, mental health, technology and business has worked with schools and districts to build sustainable systems of personalized, competency-based learning.

  • The Spark

    LiFT co-founders Josie and David met 20 years ago while teaching in a rural Vermont public school.

    As an English teacher, Josie specialized in creating an atmosphere of belonging, trust, and personal connection with her students. She launched many new and bold out-of-the box learning opportunities to make learning fun, meaningful, and deep.

    David worked as an educator and clinician providing mental health services to youth who had experienced trauma. He specialized in building trust and self-confidence as keys to growth, emotional regulation and health.

    In the midst of this meaningful work, spurred by the joy of parenting their three young children, they began to grapple with systemic issues, in particular, the absence of student voice, choice, passion and purpose in secondary education.

  • Responding to a need, offering a solution

    Josie and David began to imagine a tool that would make it easier for educators to build learning pathways filled with inspiration, motivation, and rigor. Positive feedback from stakeholders led them to take the leap as entrepreneurs with the launch of SchoolHack Solutions and the release of the LiFT prototype in 2015.

    From 2016-2019, the SchoolHack team innovated alongside dozens of early adopter schools across the country to understand and solve the thorniest day-to-day problems of learner-centered practice. Along with these courageous educators, key partnerships included the Tennessee Department of Education, Next Generation Learning Challenge, and the Learn Launch Accelerator.

    LiFT gradually evolved into what it is today - a robust, end-to-end learning platform engineered specifically to accommodate all the many models of project- and competency-based learning that are transforming the educational system today.

  • New Directions

    In 2019, Josie knew it was time for her to return to her teaching roots. She continues to advise and inspire the team as they take the the LiFT software forward under the company’s new name, LiFT Learning.

    Joey Lee was hired in 2020 as LiFT’s Chief Learning Officer. As a New Hampshire educator at the forefront of the competency-based movement, Joey taught at Pinkerton Academy, where he was awarded New Hampshire’s Teacher of the Year in 2014. Joey’s subsequent leadership role at Education First gave him deep insight into experiential learning and the business processes required to have impact at scale.

Our Leadership Team

David Lipkin

David Lipkin

CEO, Co-Founder
David brings skills in systems thinking and a background in mental health to his role as LiFT Learning's CEO. From his clinical mental health background working with children and families, he is knowledgeable about behavioral intervention, self-regulation skills, social-emotional development, and trauma-informed systems of care. He has worked as a school-based clinician, a musician, and an educator at the college and middle school levels.
Joey Lee, Chief Learning Officer

Joey Lee

Chief Learning Officer
As a New Hampshire educator at the forefront of the competency-based movement, Joey taught at Pinkerton Academy, serving as Cultural Geography teacher, curriculum coordinator, hockey coach, golf coach, and exchange program director. He was awarded New Hampshire’s Teacher of the Year in 2014 before taking a leadership role as Director of Education at Education First. At EF, he was responsible for improving the learning experience of participants in travel programs through accreditation, strategic partnerships, and product development.

Karen Swanson

With an attention to detail honed managing major American orchestras, Karen applies her skills in financial oversight, budgeting, systems development and communications to provide the organizational capacity that supports LiFT Learning’s mission to foster innovation in learner-centered education.