Two of the biggest names in technology and education philanthropy are jointly funding a $12 million initiative to support new ways of tailoring classroom instruction to individual students.

The grant marks the first substantive collaboration of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, chaired by Microsoft founder Bill Gates, and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the philanthropic and investment arm of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, pediatrician Priscilla Chan.

Their joint award was given to New Profit, a Boston-based “venture philanthropy” organization. New Profit will in turn provide $1 million, plus extensive management advising, to each..

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