How can we design learning settings so that all students thrive?
April 27, 2021
Pamela Cantor, M.D., Linda Darling-Hammond, Merita Irby, and Karen Pittman
Education has long been central to the promise of the United States of America. But our current education system has never been designed to promote the equitable opportunities or outcomes that our children and families deserve, and that our democracy, society and economy need. Our system was designed for a different world — to support mass education preparing students for their presumed “places in life.” That world believed that talent and skills were scarce, it trusted averages as a measure of individuals and it was a world where racist beliefs and stereotypes shaped the system so that only some children were deemed worthy of opportunity. These beliefs influenced the learning and development ecosystem beyond school walls as well – such that access to high quality exploration and enrichment opportunities were more often a reflection of wealth and zip code than need or interest.