Thursday, August 25, 2005


There’s a really neat study on “Public Schools and Economic Development: What the Research Shows” that all Nebraskans ought to ponder. Search for it on the website of the Ohio-based think tank, the Knowledge Foundation:


An excellent education system does this for a local and state economy:
-- higher wages
-- higher productivity
-- improved property values
-- better quality of life, because well-educated people HAVE a better quality of life
-- social stability
-- positive ripple effect of economic impact, even in low-income areas, if the schools are small, local and community-oriented

I like these two section headings and want to learn more about how these apply to Nebraska’s schools:

“The Role of Public Schools in Business and Worker Location Decisions”

“The Impact of Well-Maintained Schools on Student Performance”

This is the kind of information we need to be focusing on, to build Nebraska. Too often, educators and education policymakers are “compliance-based” instead of “performance-based.” They think if they make plans and budgets, and stick to them, and fulfill regulatory mandates, they’re doing well.

Unh-unh. It’s how the system that they’re operating WORKS.

And a key measurement of that is in economic development. If it isn’t so hot and you wish it could be, look at taxes, sure; look at weather; look at amenities.

But look, extra hard, at public schools. They make or break business moves, every darn day. Are we as competitive as we could be? That’s a good question. Let’s ask it!

Comments: Post a Comment