Education Means Business

He’s not finished yet. At Atlanta-based Capital Commercial Development Group, he’s is designing a similar program. Recently retired from the military, Thornton, 44, deliberately sought employment with a company that had a “community- and faith-based ethos” of giving back to local schools in need. “We’re in the process of finalizing a partnering arrangement with a high school in Savannah, Georgia, that’s had some challenges. We’ll come in, talk to the students, provide insight, and talk about the soft skills—especially critical thinking—that are needed to succeed in the business community.” Thornton eventually plans to offer internships to students.

Professionals like Thornton are doing their part to close the K–12 education divide, ensuring that our next graduating classes will not exit school to unemployment lines and unproductive lives. In this final installment of our series, we take a look at the promise and progress of educational upgrades through business enterprises, community activism, and powerful partnerships.

Business Class
Now more than ever, business leaders and educators are seeking collaborative models—ranging from curriculum development to direct institutional management—that work. Major corporations have made a huge investment in schools, and contribute roughly $3.5 billion to them each year. For some companies, such activity is nothing new. Take Chicago-based Ariel Investments L.L.C. (No. 6 on the be Asset Managers List with $5.5 billion in assets under management).

Fifteen years ago, the firm founded Ariel Community Academy after being awarded corporate sponsorship of a public school through former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley’s New School Initiative Program. The school’s administrators targeted Chicago’s North Kenwood area, one of the city’s most underserved communities, and designed a corporate–family–school partnership that has helped make Ariel one of Chicago’s top-performing elementary schools. During the 2009–2010 school year, 89% of Ariel’s students who took state tests met or exceeded state standards, compared with 70% of students in the district. Launched with 80 students, the school now has 547 students, pre-K through grade 8. Ariel’s principal, Lennette Coleman, says, “Our school is cutting-edge because we go beyond financial literacy. We teach our students how to use money to work for them, how to invest it, how to use it entrepreneurially, and how to manage it over time. In that sense, we’re a leader.”

(Continued on next page)

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6
ACROSS THE WEB
  • Paul W. W

    Great article! Great man leading the parade, keep up the good work.

  • WALTER WEBB / FREELANCE WRITING

    THE WORLD EDUCATION HAS GROWN SO MUCH IT SEEMS AS THOUGH IT STREETS ARE PAVED WITH GOLD. TIAA CREF (TRIEX) TEACHERS ARE NOT ONLY INVESTING IN THE WELFARE OF THEIR STUDENTS, BUT A NEST EGG FOR THEIR FAMILIES. FOLLOWING PRINCIPLE PATH OF WISDOM, INVESTING IS EDUCATION IS A SOCIALLY CONSCIOUS THING TO DO. TAKE STRAYER UNIVERSITY (STRA) EVEN AT A WHOOPING $100 DOLLARS OR MORE PER SHARE PRICE THE SCHOOL HAS CARVED AN EDUCATIONAL
    NICHE MARKET WITH WORKING ADULTS. TWO PARENT FAMILIES, WORKING SINGLE MOMS, VETERANS OF THE MILITARY, AND EMPLOYEE EDUCATION PROGRAMS ARE FINDING CONVIENCE FOR THE SCHEDULES. AND WITH STRAYER’S SHARE PRICE AND ASSETS IT LIKE GOING TO THE MOST GIFTED UNIVERSITY SCHOOL. ANOTHER IS CORINTHIAN COLLEGES (COCO) WITH THEIR ATTITUDE TOWARD SPIRITUAL EDUCATION
    IN ITS CURRICULUM. MANY OF THEIR STUDENTS LOOK AT SOCIALLY CONSCIOUS INVESTMENTS LIKE CAPSTONE CHURCH FUND (XCBFX) AS A MEANS IN THEIR OVERALL
    GOALS AND OBJECTIVES. DeVRY (DV) EDUCATION OFFERS TECHNICAL SKILLS WHICH
    RIVALS THAT OF COMMUNITY COLLEGES. AND THEY PUT THEIR EARNINGS BACK INTO IN HOUSE MARKETING BY PURCHASING TELEVISION AND RADIO SPOTS TO PROMOTE ITS
    OBJECTIVES. A GREAT FUTURE IN ITT EDUCATIONAL SERVICES (ESI) IS IN STORE
    FOR THIS EDUCATION ROOTED SOFTWARE CURRICULUM. THEY HAVE ONE OF THE FASTEST PRODUCT DEVELOPED STUDIES SUPPORTING THE TECHNOLOGY FIELD. AND REAL ESTATE WITH AMERICAN CAMPUS COMMUNITIES (ACC) ARE SPRINGING UP ALL
    ACROSS AMERICA EDUCATIONAL CAMPUS WITH A MIXTURE OF DORMITORY AND CAMPUS
    APARTMENTS FOR STUDENTS. COMPANIES IN EDUCATION ARE PREPARED TO MEET THE
    FUTURE, NOT JUST IN LITERATURE, BUT A COMMUNITY RESOURCE ALSO.

  • Mechelle Brown

    This is a great article; however, the school where the student’s pictured with Mr. Thornton attend is not mentioned anywhere in the article.
    As a parent of a student who attends the school, I am happy to fill in the missing information your writers omitted.
    The school is Scholars Academy Charter School, located in Riverdale, Georgia.
    We, too, are doing great things with a limited budget and are in need of partnerships to help enhance the education of our students.

    • Mechelle Brown

      Please excuse my typo.

  • Abby

    Linda: Just cauhgt up with your blog sounds like you are fully engaged and lovin it! While you are missed, you’ll be back soon with new ideas. Enjoy!!! Joe

  • Pingback: Save Our Schools March – Journey For Justice 2