Opportunity

Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools

Feb 7, 2014


The Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools is a unique national coalition of 40 public school districts and education agencies in 24 states that collectively serve nearly 3 million students. Through partnerships with start-ups, research institutions, and one another, League districts are committing to demonstrate, evaluate, and scale up innovations that deliver better results for students.

The League will:

  • Rapidly and rigorously evaluate what works. Education technology, like all frontiers, is populated by pioneers and hucksters, and it is often hard to tell the difference. There are few reliable, independent places where superintendents, teachers, and parents can turn for trustworthy information about what technologies work. The result is that states and schools are wasting scarce tax dollars on products that are failing our kids. The League will pilot promising technologies and evaluate them rigorously and rapidly across multiple districts, building a reliable body of research about what works and what doesn’t.
  • Break down silos and scale innovation. Right now, districts across the country are developing innovative ways to enhance learning with technology. The problem is, these incidents of innovation are often taking place in isolation without a good way to ensure that the best ideas can be scaled up. The League will be a vehicle for surfacing the most promising ideas and sharing on-the-ground lessons about how to implement them, making it possible to scale innovation in traditional public school districts – big and small, urban and rural – across the country.
  • Transform the market by streamlining procurement, aligning supply and demand, and focusing the decisions of purchasers. The K-12 market represents a significant – but daunting – opportunity for service providers. The combination of uninformed purchasing decisions, a highly disaggregated market, and a byzantine procurement process stops innovative tools from making their way into the classroom. Through the League, sellers can learn what buyers need, and buyers can learn what sellers make, paving the way for common technological solutions districts can purchase together.

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