Laurene Powell Jobs’ XQ Super School Project empowers Americans to redesign schools

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Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, is calling on educators, business leaders, and students to develop innovative ways to redesign the high school experience through her campaign XQ The Super School Project.

With technology changing and improving every aspect of our lives – from our home life, to our work life, to how we connect and communicate with one another – other aspects, such as our education system, remains greatly unchanged and has not evolved or adjusted as quickly.

"The system was created for the work force we needed 100 years ago," Powell Jobs said to the New York Times. "Things are not working the way we want it to be working."

Powell Jobs’ goal is to support an educational system that focuses on relevant learning and will prepare students for a rapidly changing future.

America’s education system’s obsession with standardized testing suffocates creativity and innovation in the classroom. Novel and unconventional ways of teaching are sacrificed for rigid school curriculums.

In Eric Westervelt’s NPR article, “Where have all the teachers gone?” Westervelt cites the relationship between high-stakes testing and teacher evaluations as a major contributor to America’s current teacher shortage.

In the past, many Americans would become teachers due to their passion and desire to create meaningful differences in their students’ lives; however, would-be teachers are becoming disillusioned and discouraged by the profession due to the overemphasis on testing.

Consequently, the US is facing a massive nationwide teacher shortage with Texas, California, North Carolina, and New York suffering the most.

The moral of the story? America’s current school system is not working for teachers and is definitely not helping our students. Something has to change.

Powell Job’s Super School Project aims to improve and redesign America’s education system by preparing students for a more connected world and a lifetime of learning.

In a time where technological innovation is rapidly changing our futures, Powell Jobs believes Americans have the power to create a new kind of school system that will move education forward. 

With approximately four months left to submit ideas, the winning teams will be provided expert support and $50 million to turn five schools into Super Schools over the next five years.

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