Essay Innovation – A Step by Step Solution to Improve Education

Essay Innovation – A Step by Step Solution to Improve Education

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Innovation – A Step by Step Solution to Improve Education

This week the media was full of stories about the outrage regarding the severe cuts California is undergoing in the area of public education funding. California currently ranks 49th out of the 50 states in public school performance K-12. Most people are understandably perplexed about how we will improve school performance and close the achievement gap if we keep cutting the funding? A bit of a chicken and egg dilemma.

The failing of our public schools across the US and particularly in urban areas has been a rant of mine for a long time. I am convinced that a failing education system is the most critical long-term problem facing our country. I have made education the top budget priority in my family, and fortunately, had the means to send my children to private school as the alternative to my real wish – that our public schools were close or equal to the educational experience of most private schools and many high-performing public charter schools. However, during the same timeframe, I decided I could not turn my back on the public education problem, if not for my kids, for the generations that will follow and the well-being of our country overall.

For more than ten years I have invested a great deal of time to K-12 public education reform with a particular focus on schools in low income communities through my active participation in several organizations dedicated to this cause. Often, friends and colleagues say to me “Why bother with all your effort? The system is broken.” While I have believe that this is a very tough, complex, entrenched systems problem with no quick fixes, I also believe we simply HAVE to make it better as soon as possible, and m...


... middle of paper ...


... a society, attack and solve the biggest threats to future of this country’s wellness –

1) Get great people on the issue with a passionate commitment to solve it over time
2) Fund innovation to create long term solutions, not short term band-aids
3) Be tenacious and patient, yet act with urgency
4) Realize progress comes in small steps most of the time, adding up to systemic change over time
5) Experiment and adapt as we go

Hopefully we can elevate the Education issue to others that feel more pressing and urgent, and in the long run are not. In the long run, if we don’t fix education, every one of the other challenges gets worse. And, if (when) we do, they all get better. A better educated country is a country with fewer societal challenges.

“I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward” – Thomas Edison



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