Print this Page

Press Release


The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) in alliance with the Stupski Foundation announced Kentucky, Maine, New York, Ohio, West Virginia and Wisconsin as the first states to launch a pioneering partnership to transform the nation's public education system and dramatically lift the quality of learning and achievement for all children in public schools.

"This provides a unique opportunity for educators to evaluate our current practices and to find ways to graduate all children with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed," said CCSSO Executive Director Gene Wilhoit. "This will require open questioning of our current system and working together to create a new educational system that can deliver these exciting approaches to every child in every public school on a consistent basis."

In November 2009, CCSSO and the Stupski Foundation established the Partnership for Next Generation Learning to create the innovation environments and flexibility that school, district and state education leaders need in order to design systems that can deliver excellent student outcomes on a broad scale.

"We are well aware of the numerous pressures that our school, district and state education leaders face on a daily basis," said Alexa Cortes Culwell, the Stupski Foundation's chief executive officer. "Working with CCSSO, the Stupski Foundation is committed to providing leaders in the partnership's six groundbreaking states with the supports they need to drive change in their systems so that all children can excel in their education, particularly children of poverty and color."

The partnership states will begin their work in May by setting up Innovation Labs made up of selected schools, districts, state education agencies as well as early childhood programs, universities and other key partners. The labs will collaborate with cross sector experts inside and outside of education to examine and adopt effective teaching, learning, and student assessment practices. Around that effort, the labs will design new systems at the district and state levels that can scale these approaches.

As the first six states move forward, "we want the partnership to be a catalyst for many more states to take action, share efforts and accelerate change," said Wilhoit.

The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues.

Based in San Francisco, the Stupski Foundation was established in 1996 to catalyze change in public school systems so that all children graduate ready for college, career and life.