What if TV holds the key to helping schools?

In my last few postings I’ve been discussing my growing frustration with the lack of creativity and funding being commited to the educational system. We’ve been openly discussing how by rethinking what school is, what students really are, and how to alleviate pressures on educators, there might be a way to grow a new kind of educational system.

So many people say that the salvation of our economy is new business: new technology, new inventions, entrepreneurialism.

This series has made me think of the Verizon commercial… you know the one… the little girl is running the lemonade stand, gets the verizon phone and suddenly starts thinking outside the box, using technology to create a new, bigger business than anyone typically might think possible.

So, if small business is so vital, and kids CAN be taught to think creatively and apply themselves to business concepts, then what might education look like if we considered some ideas:

  • What if each school picked a business to build?
  • What if middle schools re-tooled their classes to reinforce business concepts?
  • What if each freshman class built a new business over the course of their 4 years in high school. At the end of those four years, the business goes out into the community, creating a new sustainable economic influencein the community.
  • What if students were required to create a new product, service, program proposal that found ways to promote environmentalism/sustainability?
  • What if all classes were retooled to feed into these business endeavors so that there was a direct application of what the students did and learned each and every day, and what they did directly impacted the business every day?
  • What if teachers were less “teaching” than “coaching,” calling students aside to coach and mentor them through situations.
  • What if as students progressed through their high school years they had a choice to move from one business to the other in the school? The process of hiring, promotion, evaluaton…. all could be reinforced?
  • What if students were taught how to position what they’ve done on a resume?

I’m sure there are other great ideas out there. And I’m sure there are people who will say I should have thought of, or that there are schools doing radical things, etc., etc., etc.

I will be the first to say I know there are a lot of great things going on out there. There ARE innovative programs. There are incredible teachers who do amazing things with what few resources they have. What I’m saying is, these are the exceptions, not the rule. And that it should no longer be acceptable to have a few “really innovative thngs” going on in schools. Each school has to be innovative – just as every entrepreneur and every employee has to be innovative in order to be profitable or valued in the business.

Thought: if business says that schools are not creating the employees we need, then what isbusiness going to do to help change it? What will education do to keep the conversation open?

Category: Creativity

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