American PreK-12 Educational System and Entrepreneurship
future of any country is directly shaped with the quality of education provided
to young learners. With the increasing pressure on the American PreK-12
education to enrich curriculum and to broaden learning opportunities for
students, to give impetus to innovative teaching techniques, and to prepare
learners for proactive participation in national economy, it is the right time
to revisit the education system to include entrepreneurship focus.
As soon as capitalism became the driving force of economic development of the United States of America, entrepreneurs have been granted with favorable environment to put their ideas to a test. The national economy is built upon the successes of small and middle-sized companies founded by entrepreneurs. The demand for skillful, knowledgeable, and educated entrepreneurs is evident, which in its turn creates the necessity to reform the preK-12 educational system. The transformation of the educational system requires the collaborative efforts of educators together with transformative leaders who are passionate for educational quality and equity. The radical improvement in the American preK-12 educational system can and should be achieved by creating the opportunities for entrepreneurs to share their visionary ideas and organizational management skills with educational professionals.
In addition to integrating entrepreneurship as the approach to manage the American preK-12 educational system, it is equally important to introduce entrepreneurship as a curriculum. Students across all levels of learning should be given an opportunity to explore their talents, ultimately helping them translate their interests and hobbies into successful entrepreneurship ventures. Moreover, a number of effectively managed programs are already running outside of the educational system, preparing young citizens for the entrepreneurship. For example, Youth Empowerment and Self-Sufficiency Luncheon is organized and annually held by Girls Inc. to equip girls with the entrepreneurship skills and economic literacy. Similarly, the Girl Scouts of the USA provides invaluable experiences to its members, creating the perfect learning environment to gain and strengthen not only communication skills but also sales management, time planning, and resource allocation (Stange, Oyster, & Sloan, 2011, p. 624).
The radical restructuring of the American preK-12 educational system should learn from the business models of the Girl Scouts of the USA, Girls Inc., and other organizations that focus on teaching entrepreneurship skills to young learners. The American preK-12 educational system should be rebuilt upon the innovative platform of entrepreneurship, and this change can be achieved only through collaboration and collective action. In particular, the traditional approaches to education cherished in such developed countries as the United States and the United Kingdom, which are characterized with centralized curriculum standards and increased stakes on test scores for teachers and students, no longer work (Zhao, 2012, p. 16). The rapid economic growth of Eastern Asian economies of Korea, China, and Singapore should serve as an example of the next step in the American preK-12 educational system’s transformation. The Eastern Asian systems of education offer broader curriculum and more autonomy, cultivating entrepreneurial spirit in students.
In conclusion, the state’s control of the curriculum is the key barrier to teaching entrepreneurship in preK-12 on a national level (Management Association USA, 2017, p. 260). This barrier should be removed, empowering educational policy-makers to better prepare the younger generation of learners. As of now, many entrepreneurship learning opportunities are available outside of school curriculum, while there is the necessity to include them within formal preK-12 educational system.
Management Association. (2017). Entrepreneurship: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications. Hershey: IGI Global.
Stange, M., Oyster, C. and Sloan, J. (2011). The multimedia encyclopedia of women in today's world. 1st ed. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications Company.
Zhao, Y. (2012). World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students. 1st ed. Thousand Oaks: Corwin, SAGE Publications Company.
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