At the root of many American problems lies an ineffective and outdated education system that is failing our students. Inequality and education have always been inextricably linked, and if we don’t fix education, we don’t fix inequality.
Simply put, our citizens are not being prepared to compete in today’s global, hyper-connected economy, and, for low-income students, the outlook is especially grim. A recent Boston College study of 57 countries showed, among other unflattering comparisons, that only 7% of U.S. students (versus 48% of students in Singapore) reached the advanced level in eighth-grade math. Meanwhile, a 2012 Brookings study showed that “a whopping 43% of job openings require a bachelor’s degree or more.” Yet, only 30% of Americans and 15% of Latinos, our nation’s fastest growing demographic, have the credentials.
Yet amidst all these gloomy statistics are rays of light. Five disruptive trends are breaking old educational habits and making way for a system that will better prepare our young people for the future while leveling the socioeconomic playing field.