When education reform and real estate development get together, miracle$ happen…
Once in long ago historical times teachers came from the same places where they taught. But the teachers wanted to stay in their communities and this caused them to become LIFO lifers. Fortunately a visionary reform movement was born and bold visionary leaders known as transphormers understood that kids score best on standardized tests when teachers come from far away and stay for a short time. This was also a happy coincidence in that it resulted in cost $aving$ that could be used to purchase blended learning devices that have also been proven to cause test score increases. Problems solved!
Make that almost solved. Because the fresh new teachers traveled from far away to boost achievement and excellence, they didn’t have anywhere to live. Fortunately bold visionary leaders who have figured out one way to boost profits achievement almost always have another great idea waiting in the wings. Stop one on today’s tour of excellence takes us to Philadelphia where even as we say farewell to 23 old school schools and their teachers, “a vibrant ecosystem of reform” is under construction. That sound you hear is the last nail being hammered into the coffin of public education the construction of a bold new headquarters for Teach for America, housing for hundreds of TFA corps members and office space for a rainbow of edupreneurs.
The bold visionary behind this bold vision is construction magnate turned education reformer turned construction magnate Donald Manekin. Let’s meet him, shall we?
“This is about helping teachers solve the mystery about where to live, giving them a community where they can come home and share lesson plans or just say, ‘Today sucked’ to one another,” Manekin said.
Gee, remember when teachers used to have place to live and a community because they came from one???
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas—for two years…
Philly isn’t the only city where TFA corps members will soon have a home away from their actual homes. Thanks to shoe magnate turned education reformer turned shoe magnate Tony Hseih, the CEO of Zappos, downtown Las Vegas is clearing out the bums rolling out the welcome mat for hundreds of TFA corps members. The ambitious project has gotten off to a slow start as it turns out that the TFA-sters who spend their days bringing excellence to the less fortunate aren’t quite as enthusiastic about living with the less fortunate.
Goldman Sachs hearts education reform
The next stop on our tour is Newark where construction is under way on something called Teacher Village.This bold visionary partnership between the noted education reformers at Goldman Sachs and the city of Newark, will house not just teachers but the charter schools at which they work. Teacher Village tackles a major challenge faced by the fresh new teachers replacing the union-stifled teachers of old: burnout. It turns out that the 14 hour-per-day intensive test prep that’s required to overcome the effects of poverty without actually dealing with poverty can lead to rapid excellence depletion. Bold visionary solution? Have teachers live at their schools! Why am I not excellent enough to have thought of this and also take advantage of a generous 39% tax credit for investing in our children’s futures?
Shall we let New Jersey Governor Chris Christie tell us about the bold vision that’s at the heart of this bold visionary project?
“At the heart of Teachers Village is a shared commitment to innovative educational policies that Mayor Booker, the City and my Administration feel so strongly about – providing choice in education for the students and families that feel they have no choice. No matter what their zip code, each and every child should have access to a quality education.”
Fingers crossed a teachers village or a TFA encampment of excellence will be setting up shop in a former community near you. But until that lucky day arrives, let’s check in with our edupreneurs in Philadelphia, where excitement about the bold vision that will soon be a reality is rapidly building. Meet soon-to-be tenant Alejandro Gac-Artigas, the 24-year-old CEO of Springboard Collaborative, a pilot reading program in select charter schools that is combating the “summer slide,” the regression in reading skills that occurs during idle summer months.
“I’m really excited about it. For those of us trying to transform education, it will amplify our collective voice while fostering the entrepreneurial energy and collisions required to keep ideas fresh.”
Reader: the sound you just heard was indeed a collision—of my wine box hitting the floor.
Send comments, tips or collision reports to firstname.lastname@example.org.