Implementing significant change is a once-in-a-generation activity. A partial success leaves little room and resources for a “second wave” that fills in the gaps. As we noted in
Chapter 8, flaws in implementation mean that many big-ticket programs have produced limited results – sometimes none. This is why we want to give careful consideration to implementation of our recommendations, limited as we are by our commitment to keeping geographical, cultural and political considerations as broad as possible.
As we have mentioned, the kinds of changes we are recommending are already being implemented in various places, but usually only in a single “alternative” school rather than on a broader scale. Scaling implementation requires careful consideration and planning if we are to achieve lasting, system-wide improvements. To this end, we will now lay out the important considerations for the implementation of these kinds of changes in an education context, followed by a suggested example pathway.
“Finnish education expert, Pasi Sahlberg, says the much lauded transformation of the Finnish education system came “at a reasonable cost.” So reasonable, in fact, that 98% of the cost of education at all levels is covered by government rather than by private sources.”