We don’t hear about startups in education in America as we hear about them in other industries. Why? There are multiple reasons. One is the belief that superior education and profit making are conflicting. Are they?
Superior customer service in other industries seems to lead to higher profit. People don’t have any issues with that. Then why with education?
As Steve Jobs stated so well at least 30 years ago, the problem is that the customers went away. The customers are the parents. The customers are working on their careers, leaving their kids to the schools. The problem is also with the teacher’ union and how the schools are funded and assigned. Parents thought of schools as “free” as they were already paid by tax dollars and are not to be bought with the kind of scrutiny associated with cars.
Since the customers at large are not discerning, or have gone, then there is no incentive to the smartest people who are competing on innovation and quality.
How do we deal with this lack of education innovation?
I find inspiration from those who I admire: Warren Buffet, Rose Blankin, Thomas Edison …
What these people have in common is that they all started working since childhood. Warren Buffet sold peanuts and coke when he was seven. Rose Blankin knocked on stranger’s doors from door to door to get a live-in job at 10. Thomas Edison self taught everything from working and experimenting from childhood. Michael Faraday delivered books for a publisher at 13.
When public school education is stagnant and parents have limited means, why not ask your child to learn by doing? Real world is a great school and maybe a better school, which offers infinite problem solving opportunities, and learnings in every subject: mathematics, economics, chemistry, physics, computer science, earth science, etc.
Making the children work also helps them transition to confident and productive adults who can tackle the world.