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Knowledge From the Field

Stimulating Excellence: Unleashing the Power of Innovation in Education

Published: May 2009

Publisher(s): Center for American Progress; American Enterprise Institute; New Profit; Public Impact

Funder(s): Annie E. Casey Foundation, Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation

Related Organization(s): American Enterprise Institute, New Profit, Public Impact

View Report (44 pages; 640KB; PDF)

Area of Focus: Educational Standards

Abstract: The 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act accords increasing importance to entrepreneurship in education, primarily through a $650 million “innovation fund” designed to allow non-profits with a record of increasing student achievement to scale-up their initiatives. The report outlines solutions and ideas from leading education entrepreneurs about federal and state policy changes that can support the emergence, success, and growth of entrepreneurial problem-solvers. The authors primarily address the specific local, state, and federal policy barriers that have thus far precluded thriving entrepreneurial activity in public education.

Key Findings and/or Recommendations

= Update student achievement data systems to maximize utility for educators.

= Encourage the formation of consortia of states that adopt common national standards.

= Encourage and support collection and reporting of management data and commit to track a set of high-priority “power metrics”.

= Loosen the district monopoly over school operations and oversight.

= Allow non-university providers to train and license educators.

= Provide resources as flexible dollars wherever possible.

= Reform procurement process and regulations.

= Encourage the formation of intermediaries to make insurance and investment more feasible.

= Design public funding programs in ways that foster entrepreneurial involvement.

= Invite intermediaries to invest in education innovation.

= Develop models of performance-based operating funding.

= Catalyze private investment by creating new organizational forms.

Geographic Focus : National

Subjects/Keywords : Educational standards; accountability; school reform; public affairs; entrepreneurial activity

+ Successful strategy
= Observation
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