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Education for the Twenty-first Century: Districts Take the Lead


Valerie Greenhill, Chief Learning Officer, EdLeader21
Ken Kay, Chief Executive Officer, EdLeader21
James G. Merrill, EdD, Superintendent, Virginia Beach City Public Schools
Bob Wise, President, Alliance for Excellent Education

Educators are increasingly interested in integrating critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication into their teaching and learning systems. But these efforts will only be effective if districts change their policies and practices. In a recently published book, The Leader’s Guide to 21st Century Education: 7 Steps for Schools and Districts (Allyn and Bacon, 2012), Ken Kay and Valerie Greenhill of EdLeader21 describe seven steps that district leaders can take to integrate twenty-first-century skills into their instructional programs.

The Alliance for Excellent Education held a webinar on September 10 to explore ways districts can take the lead in twenty-first-century education. Ken Kay and Valerie Greenhill outlined the steps of implementation. James Merrill, superintendent of Virginia Beach City Public Schools, discussed what integration looks like in practice. Bob Wise, president of the Alliance and former governor of West Virginia, moderated the discussion. Panelists addressed questions submitted by webinar viewers from across the country.

This webinar is made possible with support from the
William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC-based national policy and advocacy organization that works to improve national and federal policy so that all students can achieve at high academic levels and graduate from high school ready for success in college, work, and citizenship in the twenty-first century. For more information about the Alliance, visit

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