Edublogger extraordinaire Joanne Jacobs brought my attention to Opportunity Culture, a new website project of the group Public Impact. The idea? How to extend the reach of excellent teachers with innovative uses of time, space, technology and professional roles. Opportunity Culture has a smart group of people advising the project, and of course Public Impact itself is co-directed by the Hassel team, who recently wrote a relatively concise Education Next piece on how the reach of excellent teachers can be enhanced.
Anyone in Colorado intent on building a new school or working on system transformation should take some time poring over the project’s financial planning models, which strongly assert that “schools could increase excellent teachers’ pay up to approximately 130% without increasing class sizes and within existing budgets. Are we willing to part with bureaucratic controls and outdated labor practices to make it happen?
Anyway, that kind of prediction of cost-saving productivity should capture the attention of reform-minded parents, teachers, principals, school board directors and other elected officials. The need for serious cost-saving, innovative K-12 reforms today is as real as ever. As more and more awaken to this reality, appreciation will grow for the resources provided by Opportunity Culture. And clamor will increase for any more freedom and flexibility needed to put some of the ideas into practice.