Every aspect of education must be reexamined and reimagined.
The massive challenges created by 2020’s global pandemic—and a renewed resolve to address educational equity—have sounded an urgent call to act on behalf of students and their future. For more than a decade, ExcelinEd has been at the forefront of a movement to transform education across America. Now, we are poised to continue that momentum to address this crisis.
5 Goals to Transform Education
ExcelinEd’s broad range of student-centered policy solutions promote quality, innovation and opportunity in education. With these solutions, we’ve established five goals with action plans states can use to transform education by increasing student learning, advancing equity and readying graduates for college and career.
Goal 1: Bridge the Digital Divide
The digital divide is real. More than 15 million K-12 students lack access to the internet or devices, and 400,000 public school teachers lack internet.
- Provide widespread device and internet access for underserved students.
- Offer high-quality instruction through online learning platforms and high-quality curriculum.
- Support schools and teachers with professional development in online learning.
- Develop online services for special education, English language learners and social and emotional well-being.
- Establish technology and instructional education accounts for families.
Goal 2: Close Learning Gaps
Students are underperforming. Nearly 60% of fourth graders are not performing on grade level in math; 65% are not in reading. In college, 1.7 million first-year college students need remedial help.
- Ensure every child can read by the end of third grade.
- Assess learning each year to make sure every student counts.
- Hold schools accountable for student outcomes and content mastery.
- Inform educators and parents about student progress to empower intervention.
- Equitably distribute high-performing teachers to meet the needs of all students.
- Distribute funding equitably across all public schools.
Goal 3: Strengthen Pathways to College and Career
Credentials aren’t aligned with high-quality, high-wage jobs. Only 19% of credentials currently earned by K-12 students are in demand by employers. In fact, two-thirds of the top credentials earned are oversupplied and roughly half are for low-wage jobs.
- Develop a continuum of policies and programs that support student pathways aligned with high-skill and high-wage jobs.
- Blur the lines between high school and postsecondary through college acceleration and innovative school models.
- Support students in navigating pathway options and through key transition points to college and career.
- Connect data systems across secondary, postsecondary and workforce to understand student and program success.
Goal 4: Reimagine Learning
High school graduates aren’t workforce ready. Just half of U.S. millennials can effectively apply literacy or math skills in the workplace, and 80% of 15-17 year-olds lack work-based experience.
- Redesign twelfth grade to include relevant postsecondary and career experiences.
- Provide credit for learning and experiences earned outside of schools.
- Personalize learning with a flexible path and pace to achieve mastery.
- Reconsider the structure of school to include new models, such as micro schools and learning pods.
- Fund education based on the value of learning instead of time spent in seats.
- Rethink traditional hiring practices and allow teachers to bring school to students.
Goal 5: Empower Families with Opportunity
Families have limited access to educational options. Roughly two-thirds of Americans support educational choice, yet less than 1% of K-12 students nationwide currently have access to a private school choice program and 1 million students are on the waitlist for a charter school.
- Eliminate school district boundaries for families to enroll their children in any public school in the state.
- Grow high-quality public charter schools that are equitably funded.
- Allow all education dollars to follow the student.
- Level the playing field for special-needs and low-income families through education scholarship accounts.
- Unbundle education at the course level.