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Nick Ehrmann’s Rethinking Human Capital in Technology–Based Education

In his response to last week’s NewSchools Summit, Nick Ehrmann of Blue Engine gives a warning to those who would believe that ed tech will accelerate student learning in the absence of other fundamental shifts in the way that K-12 schools and classrooms are structured. It’s a terrific piece, although we hasten to add that NewSchools is enthusiastically interested in entrepreneurial work outside the education technology world—and particularly in organizations that integrate […] Read more

Guest Post: The NewSchools Summit: Ringing in change

By Elizabeth Corcoran, Co-founder, EdSurge Telltale signs of an industry starting to gel seemed everywhere at the NewSchools Venture Fund’s annual meeting this past week in Burlingame: Young—and over-caffeinated—entrepreneurs sporting “edupreneur” tee-shirts faced off in an “American Idol” like recital of business plans. Potential investors with expensive shoes and iPads lingered in receptions, swapping business cards with new acquaintances. Long-time educators clustered with former colleagues, comparing notes over who was collaborating with […] Read more

Summit 2011: Innovation, honesty, and muffins

Yes, there were some marquee names. Mark Zuckerberg. John Doerr. Joel Klein. Sal Khan. Kaya Henderson. Reed Hastings.  As Tom Vander Ark noted, “We don’t have many rock stars in education, but most of them were on the stage at the Summit.” But it was more than just star power that people were talking about in the hallways at Summit 2011, and in their Facebook posts and tweets. It was a spirit […] Read more

2011 Entrepreneur of the Year, Organization of the Year, and New Market Maker Awards

While more than 800 supporters of entrepreneurial change in public education gathered at the twelfth annual NewSchools Summit in Burlingame, CA on Wednesday, we announced the recipients of our annual awards, including Entrepreneur of the Year, Organization of the Year, and New Market Maker Award. The awards are designed to recognize and celebrate the achievements of this important class of social innovators, who are making a difference in the lives of students […] Read more

Guest Post: Transforming education faster bottom-up instead of top-down

By Tory Gattis, Social Systems Architect and Founder of OpenTeams This post is an attempt to introduce some controversial buzz into the conversations at the summit: Is it possible our whole approach to reforming education is wrong? And by wrong, I don’t mean failing – great things are definitely happening – but wrong in the sense that we’re making progress too slowly given the size and urgency of the problem. Even today, after […] Read more

See you at the Summit!

Our 12th annual Summit and Community of Practice take place this week—and it promises to be a tremendous couple of days. From the moment you step onto the Astroturf (just trust us), you’ll see that this is going to be more engaging and more fun than any other event we’ve ever hosted. We’re working with the Aspen Institute for the first time and offering more choices, more time to network, and more […] Read more

Guest Post: What’s smoking got to do with ed reform?

By Ellen Winn, Executive Vice President, 50CAN: The 50-State Campaign for Achievement Now Education advocacy is the hot item of the year. After years of focusing almost solely on educational practice and structure (and amassing a serious list of “what works”), there is consensus in our field that if we don’t get serious about removing political obstacles that stand in the way of implementing these proven strategies, we will never be able […] Read more

Guest Post: The New Normal Summit

This Summit will be different.  It’s the first Summit held under “new normal” conditions.  We went over the cliff.  We are getting ready to live with less and many have more cuts to come.  The hangover of the Great Recession took its toll on education, but for some leaders it forced a new round of learning as a result of asking difficult questions. Did you see Duncan’s November 2010 new normal speech […] Read more

Bing Gordon on videogame design thinking

Only in one universe do the world’s farms produce more strawberries than corn, rice, sugar beets or soybeans. That universe is Farmville, the Facebook app whose other major product seems to be astonishing statistics. Statistics like that there are 30 times more people farming imaginary fields on Facebook than working on real farms in the United States. Or that the people doing that imaginary farming (including 18 million people who play this […] Read more