Our mission is to make Silicon Valley the world leader in innovation in learning.
The Mission: Silicon Valley will become the world leader in innovation in learning and prepare students to lead the 21st century economy.
Goal: The Bay Area Innovation Hub will accelerate innovation in education by attracting the best minds to work together to develop and rapidly evolve new, scalable approaches to raising student achievement, closing the achievement gap, increasing interest in STEM, personalizing learning and optimizing use of time for each child.
The Need: Today, schools in the Bay Area are isolated from the entrepreneurial engine that permeates our community. They lack the infrastructure, technical capacity, flexibility and in many cases, the will, to participate in, let alone lead, the upcoming transformation. Schools are not rewarded for risk, and therefore, have not created a culture of innovation where rapid development and continuous improvement, grounded in rigorous measurement have prevailed. And they are largely unable to attract the most talented business and technical leaders to develop scalable systems to address the challenges facing our students and schools. Where there are pockets of success, they remain isolated and/or don’t have the infrastructure to rapidly and massively scale
In fact, the majority of classrooms in Silicon Valley operate outside the reach of today’s most ubiquitous resource – the Internet – which has brought productivity gains, low-cost, high-powered cloud computing, and access to the world’s information to every other corner of the globe.
The Solution: We are creating an Innovation Hub in the Bay Area to develop an ecosystem that brings together the most talented and visionary educators, entrepreneurs, engineers, business leaders, funders, researchers and policy makers to accelerate innovation through individualized learning.
The Innovation Ecosystem
I. Innovation Schools: Students and Educators
The Innovation Hub will bring together a group of “Innovation Schools” that are committed to working together to expand the leadership, culture, capacity and infrastructure in our school systems to embrace the unfolding opportunity afforded by individualized learning. The Innovation Schools will collect and use meaningful, real-time data to drive dramatic improvements in how each student is educated. The Innovation Schools will have:
II. Innovation Incubators
The Innovation Hub will create and partner with incubators for education entrepreneurs to develop and evolve their ideas, especially for technology-supported STEM education. The Hub will connect entrepreneurs with Innovation Hub Partners to generate, co-develop, test and evolve the best ideas:
III. Innovation Funds for EdTech Enterpreneurs
Accelerate the growth and impact of education technology by 5-10 years through an innovative venture capital fund that provides “patient” capital to EdTech start-ups. Both technological advancements and new pressures on the K-12 system have altered the dynamics enough to indicate the timing is ripe for venture capital in education.
IV. Innovation Labs
Partner with the leading technology companies, research institutes, R&D labs, the NSF and the proposed national ARPA-Education to dramatically increase the research and development in science and technology and their applications in the learning ecology.
Why Today? Online learning has the potential to revolutionize K-12 education to inspire and support the learning needs of each child by radically improving optimization of time and resources.
As public funds decline and competition for jobs becomes ever more globally competitive, the increasing demand for more efficient use of resources while improving student outcomes is creating pressure for new more productive school models. Education technology promises to transform the entire education sector through innovative platforms, tools, delivery, distribution models and content, but although there are a few bright spots today, education technology significantly lags almost every other industry.
At the same time, a new breed of entrepreneurial organizations like Khan Academy, Rocketship, School of One, and Leadership Public Schools are demonstrating that by providing each student with motivating, self-paced resources, we can, in fact, rapidly accelerate the pace of learning, scalably, in both high-income and typically underserved communities. And we are beginning to understand how to do it. Through collaboration, vision and leadership, the opportunity for breakthrough success is high, and the time is now.
Why Silicon Valley? The Bay Area has the talent, capital, vision and innovation fervor to organize the world’s information, network and entertain the world’s people, and revolutionize the word’s media. In fact, the Bay Area ecosystem is one of the most innovative in the world, producing global leaders in major sectors – high tech, bio tech, clean tech, medicine – and yet, other than in isolated pockets, we have not cultivated innovation in our education systems. We certainly have the capacity, talent and resources to inspire and educate our children.
Target Partners: YOU!
Kim Jacobson, Co-founder of Junyo
Kim Jacobson is a senior business executive with 15 years’ experience designing Internet and communications software, mobile devices and education technology for industry innovators such as Excite@Home, Palm, and Macromedia. An avid entrepreneur, she has also been a founding member of several startups, including Junyo (learning analytics), Oodle (running Facebook’s Marketplace), Mailfrontier (sold to SonicWall), and Epocrates (NASDQ:EPOC). Kim has a long-standing passion for revitalizing education by using the power of technology to spread excellence, access and equity. She was an early Corps member of Teach For America and taught elementary school for 5 years in Compton and Redwood City, California. She is a Education Circle Leader of the Full Circle Fund, investing in Bay Area entrepreneurs to improve teaching and learning in public schools. She holds an M.B.A. and M.Ed. with a specialization in Learning, Design, Technology from Stanford University and a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania.