I read somewhere recently, might have been Seth Godin or Clay Shirky, that we’re entering a world in which you can get 80% of the original product for 20% of the cost — if it’s informational in nature. It’s been bugging me a lot, tickling on the back of my brain. Wish I could find the original reference, and include a link to it here.
I’m guessing that my school (90 years old this year) represents around $50 million in assets. It costs a student quite a large sum of money to come here, something akin to $40,000 a year…
But for $10 million in assets, and around $8,000 a year, it’s conceivable that a new school could replicate 80% of the student experience here.
This bugs me. It bugs me a lot. Because it suggests that with new tech and new investment, we could solve a lot of America’s educational woes with a wave of the magic-dollar wand… and that’s clearly not the case.
But say you had $10 million, and that was your budget for starting a new school. If you design well, you’d get another $1.6 million in September when school opens and parents pay the tuition (in theory). But your school has to provide the equivalent of 80% of programs and services that it does now…
What would you keep? What would you toss? What would need to change? How would you leverage technology, computers, and networks to solve some of the problems? How would you build the school of the future, if you could, today?
I confess, I don’t know. I’m going to think on it some more, and when I do, I’ll tag the entries with #80/20.
How would you spend $10 million to start a new school?