The promise of income and social mobility is central to our identity—and our success—as a nation. That every child, no matter his or her background, has the chance to build a successful life is the essence of the American Dream. Fulfilling this promise depends, above all, on a high-quality education, our society’s single greatest lever of opportunity. 

An excellent education opens doors as it opens minds. 

Today we are living in a season of unparalleled transformation – the onset of the digital age has spurred innovations across nearly every sector of our society. Just as our public schools modernized at the dawn of the Industrial Age, today we have both an obligation and an opportunity to ensure that our schools are equipping our students to thrive in the 21st century. 

Yet too many of America’s public schools are not up to the challenge. While other nations are investing in the next generation—transforming their schools into laboratories of creativity and innovation—students across our country have been left behind in schools with outdated models, limited resources, and low expectations. Even though we have numerous examples of high performing schools that are now models of excellence, we have struggled to replicate rigor across the education sector so that all students benefit.

The result is a nation at risk of squandering the potential of a generation. If we want the rising generation to achieve great things—not only in school but also in life—we owe it to them to enhance and heighten our expectations and change our schools.

At Emerson Collective, we believe change starts with shared commitment and partnership—by families, students, teachers, administrators and community leaders. 

We believe deeply in the values of equity and opportunity in education.  We believe all studentsregardless of their income, race, language status or disability – deserve to be at the center of every education decision made in schools, in communities, in states and in Washington, DC.  

We believe that, together, we can empower every student to meet high and consistent academic standards. We believe all students deserve to be educated in schools that support their academic and personal growth, and that meet and reward their aspirations. And throughout, schools ought to be held accountable for how well students are learning. 

We believe that every student ought to be taught by excellent teachers. Likewise, teachers should be celebrated, competitively compensated, and treated with the same reverence we afford to doctors and business leaders.

We believe in using the power of technology and innovation to transform classrooms into borderless laboratories of learning. We believe that new school models hold great promise for improving school districts. 

Together, we can restore the promise of education as America’s great equalizer and of public schools as gateways of opportunity. By building an education system designed to serve every student, we can fully realize our potential as a nation.