Policy Playbook

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.

Action Plan

  • 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.  

Action Plan 

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.

Action Plan

  • 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.  

Action Plan 

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.

Action Plan

  • 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.