Why the for-profit education business model is unsustainable
- The Atlantic examines recent examples of for-profit businesses in the secondary and postsecondary sectors which have failed to gain ground in corporate space, suggesting the broken nature of education itself, combined with the ego and drive of for-profit managers, makes for a combustible mix.
- While non-profit, public education is largely driven by political influence, for-profit education often creates the need for schools to copy the elite institutional model, which in itself, breeds the need for partnerships and bureaucratic slowdown in institutional flexibility.
- While building a reformed system of teaching and learning is difficult, there is great opportunity in creating supplementary tools for education (plagiarism checking, adaptive technology, college selection software).
At the heart of the education industry is the notion that what takes place in the learning environment is the key to student success and eventually, positive outcomes. But it is the individual work of students and families which influences these factors, which now drive financing and confidence in both the public and for-profit sectors.
For secondary institutions, aptitude for standardized tests and curriculum learning is fortified with instruction beyond the classroom, from parents or tutors. In college, it is the ability to afford tuition, keep pace with curriculum and to maximize professional development opportunities while in school to supplement job prospects. All of these areas are elements which education as an industry cannot control, but by which they are ultimately judged.
- The Atlantic Why for-profit education fails