What we know: Our community believes education is one of the most important issues facing Columbus, and we all have a role to play in helping our children succeed. That means Columbus City Schools cannot address all of the issues facing our children, nor should it.

Our mission: To unite the school, the city and the community at large in the effort to improve education in Columbus.

Our plans: We have recommended a range of implementation steps in “A new community compact for educational excellence.” These are some of the core ideas:

  • A new public-private partnership should be created to oversee the implementation of this plan. Among other responsibilities, the partnership would use an innovation fund to replicate successful district schools and attract proven charter schools to the city. The fund would generate $30 million to $50 million per year from the city of Columbus, school board and private sector.
  • The mayor should appoint a director of educational improvement to focus the city’s efforts on education and serve as a nonvoting member of the Columbus school board. This adviser would also be a member of the new public-private partnership.
  • An independent auditor would monitor the finances, performance and data of Columbus City Schools to strengthen public confidence in the system. This auditor would be jointly chosen by five elected officials, including the mayor and school board president.
  • The Columbus Board of Education would focus more attention on student achievement by changing board policies and the way it governs.

Read this chapter to learn about all of the recommendations from the Columbus Education Commission.