Town Hall Recap: New Pathways

Our recent town hall kicked off our new campaign: New Pathways: Every learner on a personalized path to opportunity (#NewPathways). This campaign will serve as a road map to the new architecture for American schools, where every learner, regardless of zip code, is on a pathway to productive and sustainable citizenship, high wage employment, economic mobility, and a purpose-driven life. It will also explore and guide leaders on the big education advances of this decade–how access is expanded and personalized, and how new capabilities are captured and communicated. When well implemented, these advances will unlock opportunities for all and narrow the equity gap. 

You can check out the links from the chat.

We kicked off the event with a poem by Rainer Maria Rilke: 

I believe in all that has never yet been spoken.
I want to free what waits within me
so that what no one has dared to wish for

may for once spring clear
without my contriving.

If this is arrogant, God, forgive me,
but this is what I need to say.
May what I do flow from me like a river,
no forcing and no holding back,
the way it is with children.

Then in these swelling and ebbing currents,
these deepening tides moving out, returning,
I will sing you as no one ever has,

streaming through widening channels
into the open sea.

Our audience loved the call to purpose and self-realization. One attendee shared: “‘May what I do flow from me like a river’ … SO. AWESOME. How many kids get to experience this in school?”

We were also joined by an awesome group of guests who helped us to share about this campaign. 

Dave Schuler, Superintendent of D214, joined to talk to us about some of the amazing things they are doing to create pathways and experiential learning for all their students. You can get a copy of the deck he used during the presentation here. You can also find more information in our links doc!

Our kids can only dream what they can see.

Dave Schuler

We were also joined by Shatera Weaver of EL Education. Shatera joined us to discuss Crew, one of our favorite advisory systems in the world. Advisory is a critical part of the Pathways campaign. 

We are crew, not passengers.

Shatera Weaver

Finally, we heard from Lydia Logan of IBM who joined us to discuss the power and future of PTECH. All of these guests are contributing super valuable thought leadership and action to helping learners personalize their present and future. 

In Hawaiʻi we identify with the idea of the “wa’a,” or voyaging canoe. All canoes sail with a “crew,” so I love what Shatera is talking about. Belonging, attachment, mutuality, and a sense of being on a voyage together, working together.

Josh Reppun

Lingering Questions

During the event we got some amazing questions from our attendees that we’re going to use to help shape our campaign. 

  • How do we express new goals in equitable ways that include four year degrees but don’t preclude other pathways wto high wage employment?
  • Since, as you said, jobs are likely to continuously change in the future, do you worry about being too focused on current needs rather than preparing for a changing future?
  • Do you have a sense that the local needs are similar/same as the global needs?
  • How do we help IBM inspire more industry leaders to commit to education and see the ROI there?
  • Where are young people doing these things, documenting and sharing their work, as owners of it?

What’s Next?

We’ll be writing and publishing about New Pathways for the next few years. You can engage with this ongoing campaign using #NewPathways or submit an idea to the Editor using the writing submission form.

Getting Smart Staff

The Getting Smart Staff believes in learning out loud and always being an advocate for things that we are excited about. As a result, we write a lot. Do you have a story we should cover? Email [email protected]

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