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The Evidence

There is a growing body of evidence from research and practice across the world about the factors that contribute to young people receiving a well-rounded education that helps to prepare them for life and work in the Twenty-First Century.

In 2016, a team from Edge visited Nashville to see first-hand the educational transformation that has taken place there over the last ten years. Employers, policy makers and educators worked hand in hand to redesign the education system to bring real relevance to the classroom. Young people in High School take part in a ‘Career Academy’ that links their learning directly to a growing sector of the local economy. Learning is brought to life through project based learning enriched with real employer engagement.

Over the last ten years, the Academies of Nashville have helped to dramatically improve behaviour and attendance, increase attainment in core subjects, raise the high school graduation rate by almost 25% and add more than $100 million to the local economy.

This transformation has not been confined to Nashville. Our partner charity in the US, Ford Next Generation Learning, have supported the spread of this model to almost 40 school districts across the United States. In each case the story of success is the same – in Coachella Valley for instance, 98% of pupils in this innovative model successfully graduated, compared to 83% of their peers in a traditional model.

Meanwhile, time and again we have seen similar approaches to those in Nashville driving positive change in schools, colleges and programmes across the world. From High Tech High in San Diego to XP School in Doncaster, a broad and balanced curriculum, rich employer engagement, teacher autonomy and interactive pedagogy are revolutionising classrooms and outcomes for young people. You can find out more about our partner projects here .

Edge Future Learning exists to join up and share this practice so that more schools, pupils and communities can benefit from an engaging approach that brings learning alive and prepares them for more than just a set of exams. You can read how we’re doing it here