Elementary School Carnival Ideas

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Fundraising Companies are NOT the Enemy When it Comes to Educational Innovation

In my last post, I provided my take on the various companies in support of education.  In the end, there are companies and foundations that will be responsible for improving education and contributing in a positive way to the educational reform on the horizon.

Now, it's time to take things a bit further.  I take on the question, how will fundraising be a catalyst for innovation and change in schools in the future.

In order to explain this, we have to look at where schools are today.

Schools are by and large still using old technology to connect with children and at the same time, the digital front is already embraced at home.  Without going into much detail I think we can all agree that schools are still lagging behind the technology curve.

On a slightly different front, schools are still using paper in a large way.  Paper is used in the classroom and textbooks are in paper form.  This will eventually be replaced by all things digital.

But who will fund this technological revolution?  This switch from paper to devices?  How will schools afford to keep up with technology?

Yesterday I ran across this article: Obama Boston-bound; education, fundraising on tap

It's very interesting to me for a few reasons.  A group of corporations working together to consider educational innovation fills a huge and desperate need.  Unfortunately, one main point in the article is that schools need to do more with less.

So, how do companies create devices, textbooks and digital learning tools without schools being able to pay for this technology when it's relevant.  I think we all realize that if schools adopt new technology too late, there is a challenge relating to students who have a different technological reality at home.

I believe fundraising will be around for a very long time and will be a logical partner with foundations and corporations to complete the funding cycle.

I can envision corporations stepping up to do their part to get the newest technology into production. I believe schools will take a chance and go paperless.  I see schools making up a shortfall in technology spending with fundraising dollars and support from foundations. 

Once the need to save our schools is great enough, the community will support what is best for children.

I leave you with this...

Students will never express the need for better schools, new technology or collaborative learning.  They won't ask to go paperless, or for new playground equipment.  They will step over cracked concrete steps that need to be replaced.  They won't ask for unprocessed lunches.

Students don't know about the educational reform on the horizon nor is improving schools even something they are aware of.  They don't have a voice and won't be heard on their own.

We have to step up and represent the children if improving schools is to be a reality.

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