President Obama announced his commitment to a new federal initiative, based on an existing competitive grant program, to raise the bar in U.S. public schools. Race to the Top provides all states an opportunity to submit proposals for radically changing the way public education works in the country.
I can't help but wonder if private sector cooperation might not be an integral part of some of the forthcoming Race to the Top proposals. We have seen the U.S. government turn to private contractors, with great success, in a range of industries, including military services, infrastructure projects and correctional institutions. Time after time we've seen private industry drastically improve services that the government can't ever seem to get right.
The state of Florida was one of several top picks for 2009's Race to the Top grant. Their proposal included, among other things, a commitment to tie teacher compensation and incentives directly to student performance and to place great emphasis on revitalizing the lowest 5% of schools by performance each year. Both of these tactics will seem familiar to private sector entrepreneurs.
As states race to the top to keep the next generation of U.S. citizens on pace with international public school graduates, how can your business benefit from new opportunities? What services can we in the private sector offer to public education to modernize the grade school and high school educational experience? Those who can answer these questions are poised to reap significant profits while doing good for society.
Check out these links for more information:
Entrepreneur: Wired for the Future
Bloomberg Businessweek: Obama School Reform Plan Relies on Big Business
Wall Street Journal: Obama's 'Race to the Top'
Florida Department of Education: Florida's Race to the Top Application for Initial Funding
“I've always found that the speed of the boss is the speed of the team.” - Lee Iococca