A Day at Fenway! LearnLaunch launches It’s new K-12 Innovation Summit & Innovation Advocacy Council
On Wednesday, June 23 at Fenway Park, LearnLaunch Institute hosted its first in-person event in over a year. The LearnLaunch K-12 Innovation Summit brought together edtech innovators, school and district leaders, and policy experts to celebrate the hard work of this past year and to plan ahead for what the future of the innovation industry in Massachusetts can look like. We were fortunate to have perfect weather and Fenway looked as beautiful as ever. It was a great day full of fun, laughs, and lots of hard work!
The day began with remarks from LearnLaunch President former Massachusetts Governor Jane Swift and Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Jeff Riley, who discussed the year long partnership between LearnLaunch and DESE and made the exciting announcement that our partnership will continue through the 2021-2022 school year. After the announcement, everyone took part in an interactive icebreaker, modeled after our workshops in order to get everyone familiar with one another and start some of the day’s discussions. One such activity was “Amplify, Sunset, and Create”, where stakeholders from across the industry collaborated to identify what lessons and experiences from this past year are worth keeping, putting aside, and exploring even deeper.
After lunch (and some Red Sox trivia), attendees engaged in an intensive Network Consultancy program. Each table had a public school principal and a range of other stakeholders within the edtech industry, with focuses ranging from policy to business to innovation. The principals presented a real-life problem of practice from their school, and the tables worked together to identify some potential solutions. The Network Consultancy was followed by a Q&A session where LearnLaunch Board Chair Michael Horn and Secretary of Education James Peyser answered questions about the discussions at their tables. Following a year where collaboration and team-work have been forced behind a computer screen, it was wonderful to see people with different expertises join forces to tackle some of education’s most pressing challenges. LearnLaunch is honored to be able to engage and convene such passionate stakeholders from across the edtech industry, and is very grateful to all that came out to participate.
Following the Summit, we moved to the Sam Adams Deck at Fenway Park to announce the formation of LearnLaunch Institute’s Innovation Advocacy Council. The Council will support efforts to build a robust public advocacy presence for the education innovation industry in Massachusetts, inform stakeholders of the thought-leadership value prevalent among edtech organizations and provide opportunities for meaningful interaction with policymakers. We greatly appreciate Governor Charlie Baker was able to join us and speak at the reception, and he discussed the importance of this work and LearnLaunch’s ability to lead this charge. “Our Administration is focused on sustaining these assets by ensuring continued collaboration between the edtech sector and our local schools, and by launching this Innovation Advocacy Council, the LearnLaunch Institute is playing an important role in advancing those same goals,” said Governor Baker. “We are grateful to Governor Swift, the team at LearnLaunch, and the members of this new Council for their work to strengthen the education innovation sector in Massachusetts.”
Founding members of the Council are drawn from a wide range of innovative education companies, both those with their headquarters in Massachusetts, as well as those with a strong presence in the state. Additionally, they range in size from start-ups to multi-billion dollar companies and span the wide array of solutions, products and services which make up the vibrant education innovation sector. They are:
Curriculum Associates, Education curriculum company
EF – Education First, Education travel & technology company
AWS/Amazon, Information Technology & Services company
Carnegie Learning, Learning technology company
EY-Parthenon, Management consulting company
Ellevation Education, ELL Software platform company
Mindprint Learning, E-learning company
Tyton Partners, Strategy consulting company
Edgenuity, E-learning company