ier outcomes would emerge by engaging students as designers -- and stakeholders -- of for-profit learning ventures that compete with under-performing schools?
A new framework for success-sharing
Many states now permit formation of for-profit charter schools, as an alternative to failed or failing public schools.
Although such ventures to date have been typically structured along standard business lines, their equity structures could be broadened to vest students and their families with equity interests.
For students and parents alike, the size of the shareholding and the annual dividends might be linked to criteria such as the following:
* Measurable gains in overall skills during the previous year by the charter school’s students; and
* The success of each student’s chosen peer groups during the year in gaining skills, and/or in staying out of trouble. (Each student annually might make or renew a pact for this with four or five friends.)
Such an approach would help align the near-term, as well as long-term, interests of students and their families with learning success.
Meeting and surpassing standards: partnering options with virtual charter schools
To meet curriculum requirements, the new actual charter schools could draw upon a growing range of online resources. More than 30 "virtual charter schools" are now offering online solutions to fulfill the standards often lacking in public schools.
Online core courses offered by virtual charter schools could be enhanced, over time, by new material from students versed in new media and the course topics. A growing number of sites such as StudentsKnow.com, Learnhub.com, and Wiziq.com enable students to create -- and earn revenues from -- online learning materials.
These sites, along with similar, downloadable authoring tools, could be used by students to steadily enrich the curriculum offered by the new charter schools and their virtual partners.
As the range of (highly-rated) new learning resources grew, further audiences could also be reached by the interactive online learning system.
Prize-winning content created by students in the new charter schools could be offered online as a free learning resource for those who remain caught in poorly-performing public schools, and who desire access to higher quality learning opportunities. Microvoucher coupons could help public school students in poor neighborhoods afford after-school internet costs, if they lacked other ways to connect with the new online learning resources.
Awards for the best student-created plans
How could charter schools co-owned by students emerge?
One option would be to launch competitions to recognize and reward public students who prepare charter school market studies and business plans.
Outstanding proposals to launch new for-profit charter schools -- schools featuring results-focused systems to promote peer-learning and discourage adverse peer pressures -- could earn prizes and other rewards for their creators.
The best of the proposals could be the basis for private investors to launch new charter schools, with a pre-set equity share for the initial designers as well as for families whose students enroll in these learning ventures.
Openworld is interested in exploring opportunities for student co-owned charter schools and virtual learning ventures.
We hope you'll explore a range of related ideas (at www.entrepreneurialschools.com and www.openworld.com) and share your ideas on the best ways to proceed.
Mark Frazier, Openworld
@openworld (follow on Twitter)…
w can I make such a claim? Well, simple we all know that a degree is really worthless in todays market and what is really wanted is EXPERIENCE. How do I know this... Well, currently I am looking to find Federal Enterprise Architects for a project for Dept of Homeland Security and it doesn't matter how much education, what school you attended or training they have, what is sought after is applied knowledge. They want someone with 5+ years of FEA. I drill top executives... How many years have you done FEA? Where? How many segments have they written etc... In what area? What technologies to you know? What specific kind and how much time in each? I'm sorry but your $200k our masters degree from Harvard or MIT is absolutely worthless to me! Understand that debt is a economic driving force and the entire capitalistic market is all about who owns it and controls it. That's the real power... The other reality is that there is no guarantees in a degree either... their is really nothing tangible or measurable about it. However, experience has milestones, accomplishments and real outcomes.So where is education headed? Education 3.0 or as I call it #e3o on twitter. E3o is the next evolution of education and it is going to be a really exciting reincarnation/reinvention. Its impact will be far greater than other Great Leaps humanity has undergone: speech, writing, the industrial revolution, the information revolution...and so on. The turning point will be what I have named "the Education Singularity" or "eSingularity" event -- this is the moment when any 2 yr old on a smart device running autonomous learning software will playfully and entertainingly guide any child to an grade equivalent education in Math, Science and Language arts. We are just years away from such technology coming out in the West (it wont be free initially...but it will be eventually). When eSingularity happen's a Pandora's Box will have been open that will set in motion the collapse of the Western Educational Complex that for 3000 years has monopolized and governed over Western education and the rest of the world (Probably at this point you are laughing like I am Don Quixote describing dragons and all you see are windmills... but that's okay. New paradigms are tough to swallow the first time :) The eSingularity Dragon is coming. It is a Pandora's Box because taking the nest leap to universal free education in all subject matters will be relatively easy to step to make. And when that happens... well, you can use your imagination. The shit will hit the fan!Some milestones... Opensource media platform Kaltura 2007, Development of smartphones and their dominance over PC 2010. Apple buying Siri on April 28th 2010. Siri is a very rudimentary autonomous platform that acts as an personal assistant. Using the imagination one could easily see Apple releasing "Siri app finder" and coming out and "Siri Ed" for powering iPhone apps learning with Siri and doing some very cool things with it. I can imagine a host of other simple autonomous apps too... when others see the power and usability of Siri other autonomous software apps start hitting the market. And out of this will evolve the autonomous software industry. What these apps will do is allow anyone to take content and turn it into learning modules that can be translated into any of the 6782 languages and autonomously delivered to any smart device... Learning Engines like the Cerego engine will track these modules and actually deliver them intelligently to an end-user. I will be able to tell my smart phone what I want to learn and it would not only train me but also provide me the skill challenges that we only traditionally learn by experience... maybe it will be VR or augmented delivered or in other problem solving method... the ways we will be able to deliver the challenges and experiences would be near infinite and completely up to the the imagination of the community builders using easy to use autonomous software tools.The eventual outcome is what we know will not be displayed on a CV, but more like a bar-code that is unique to me and only me. It would tell you EVERYTHING I chose to release to you. Maybe "Active ID (tm)" would allow anyone to just scan me with another smart device and provide you with my life playlist of my actual accomplishment, activities, roi, learning ability and education... No lies more BS or silly meaningless degrees!…