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Time to Act Now to Improve Today’s Education for Tomorrow’s Economy

• Patricia Levesque

Last month, I wrote an urgent call to action based on ACT’s Conditions of College & Career Readiness report. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Leaders & Laggards, A State-by-State Report Card on K-12 Educational Effectiveness, released today, reinforces the importance of acting now to improve the quality of education for tomorrow’s economy.

I applaud our partners at the U.S. Chamber for consistently keeping education at the forefront of the business community, recognizing the influence of our nation’s employers in improving education. Leaders & Laggards underscores the importance of having our nation’s students college and career ready while at the same time ensuring fiscal responsibility for taxpayers and states.

Understanding the importance of a high-quality K-12 education system, the U.S. Chamber analyzed the state of education in the states using 11 measures, including National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores, Advanced Placement (AP) exam passage rates, state pension funding and ExcelinEd’s Digital Learning Now!’s 2013 state rankings of state technology policy.

By utilizing the 2013 Digital Learning Report Card, the U.S. Chamber highlights the efforts of each state to create new opportunities for students, explore new models of learning, and provide needed infrastructure aligned to the 10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning. It also emphasizes the opportunities for reform to create an environment where digital learning can thrive.

A quality K-12 education plays a critical role in having a prepared and trained workforce. The students in today’s classrooms are tomorrow’s CEOs, inventors and world leaders. It is clear that in order to prepare our students for success in a competitive global economy, there is more work for all of us to do. Our students deserve better.

Students and teachers should have access to new models of learning and the latest instructional toolsTweet: Students & teachers should have access to new models of learning & latest instructional tools. More from @ExcelinEd: High standards and accountability ensure every student gains critical skills. Empowering parents with more educational choice gives every student access to the learning environment that best meets his or her individual needs.

Through collective, committed reform efforts I am confident we can provide every student access to an education that equips them for success.

About the author

Patricia Levesque @levesquepat

Patricia is the Chief Executive Officer for the Foundation for Excellence in Education. She served as Governor Jeb Bush’s deputy chief of staff for education, enterprise solutions for government, minority procurement, and business and professional regulation. Previously, Patricia served six years in the Florida Legislature in the Speakers Office and as staff director over education policy. Contact Patricia at