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Across urban, suburban & rural schools, beyond labels & partisan boundaries are education policies and systems that can serve all kids. At the CFEP, we're helping states and communities engage in a new kind of conversation aimed at transcending the divides, focusing on common sense, common ground shifts in K-12 education that put opportunities for all kids at the forefront.

We'll be sharing our thoughts and a look at the work we're doing here. We'd also welcome the opportunity to showcase collaborative efforts going on around the country or differing views on policies or systems. If you're interested in having your work featured or in contributing to the blog, please contact us. To read more about the Keystone Policy Center's work in other fields, visit the Keynotes blog and the Keystone Policy Center website.

 

You’ve heard the sound bites and read the buzzwords on social media labeling the “obvious” or “easy” solutions for school violence, such as “harden targets,” “outlaw assault weapons,” “arm teachers,” “tighten gun laws” or “restrict access to violent video games.” The simple truth is that there is no simple solution to the problem of school violence and safety. But a community-based approach is far more likely to solve these issues than is a politician trying to do so without the community’s buy-in or leadership.

Last week, I shared my thoughts on the state of Career and Technical Education (CTE) and the broader efforts in K-12 education to ensure our kids are “career ready” whether they plan to enter the workplace directly after high school or pursue either a two-year degree, specialized certification, or a four-year college degree. While there are important strides being made and a number of encouraging efforts in pockets across the country, we still have a long way to go to ensure all kids are prepared for success.

For most of the past decade, I’ve worked across the country helping state leaders ensure every child has access to a great education. In that effort, I’ve worked with some incredibly bright and passionate educators, school leaders and state officials on everything from rethinking how we prepare and support new teachers to frameworks for improving struggling schools. I’ve been inspired and encouraged by the progress — even if incremental and, at times, slow. But it’s when I’m not on the road, when I’m home and helping raise two amazing kids that a single question dominates my thinking: Is the education our kids have access to going to prepare them to succeed in the world after they graduate high school?

Christine Scanlan is Keystone Policy Center’s President and CEO — a position she has held since July 2013. Keystone has thrived under Christine’s leadership, fundamentally reshaping critical public policy debates and dialogues on issues like education policy, public health, emerging genetic technologies, and climate change.