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Daily Nuggets: A For Impact Blog

CALL OUT on Public EDUCATION


Five years or so ago, I spoke at a fairly large gathering of ‘Public Educators’, mostly principals of public high schools and some district superintendents. (Nick claims I ranted like Tom Peters on serious medication. He also says they all looked at me as if I were ‘crazy’. Who would have guessed?)

Essence of my message was:

    • Change or Die.

    • Abandon Almost Everything.

    • Re-Imagine… Re-Design… Re-Invent.

Almost every public high school is having FUNDING CHALLENGES. Levies passed or not passed. Cutting budgets. Dropping co-curricular activities. Pay to play, etc.

The Big Idea: PUBLIC education vs. public EDUCATION. It’s all about the students.

I do not understand why a public high school or a public school system is any different than a Private School, a Catholic School or a Charter School.

In our world, when you need more money (INCOME)… you go out and present your IMPACT (Story and Message)… and JUST ASK!

Twenty-five years ago, public colleges and universities received almost 100% of their money from government (the State Legislature). Here’s the ‘need’. Appropriate the funds. Operate.

Today, Ohio State University just finished a multi-billion dollar ‘campaign’… and every ‘public’ college and university has a development operation and raising a lot of money. ‘Development’ is just as integral and critical to the success of a ‘public’ institution as it is to ‘private’ education.

Which brings us to public high schools and elementary schools.

Raffles. Chocolate bar sales. Car washes. Advertising on the fence or scoreboard at the stadium. This is not a way to fund huge ‘GAPS’ in delivering or improving the quality of education for the students.

Almost every public school district I’m familiar with has created a (name of school system) EDUCATION FOUNDATION. No staff. No plan. No money.

Why are public educators and supposed leaders not implementing a Funding Model and Funding Plan that includes the ‘private sector’???

If you’re familiar with a local public system and have any thoughts on this, let me know.