The Future of Education: 2040 and Beyond

Student Thinking

Our public education system, which has remained largely unchanged for 100 years, is not designed to enable all children to realize their potential and achieve their dreams. Driven by our uncompromising belief in the potential of all children – and in commemoration of our 10th anniversary – TFASC launched DiscussED, a bold and innovative conversation series to reimagine South Carolina’s education system.

DiscussED convenes diverse perspectives from corporate, education, legislative, and nonprofit leaders to generate more innovative solutions than traditional ideas from the education sector. Each year, DiscussED will focus on a different theme that is rooted in educational excellence and equity.

DiscussED is a bold endeavor to push the boundaries in education for our children. If our vision is that every child deserves a great education, then we must have these conversations. It is my hope that these conversations become strategic plans.

— Kimberly Sutton Mason
Principal, Rosenwald Elementary and Middle School

TFASC’s Inaugural DiscussED

On March 3, 2022, TFASC hosted our inaugural DiscussED virtually. Cognizant of the theme, “The Future of Education: 2040 and Beyond,” DiscussED participants explored the creation of a drastically different educational experience. Children born today will graduate from high school in 2040, and the world they’ll enter as adults will have radically transformed. How do we prepare all students for success in the future, especially when South Carolina is facing a teacher shortage crisis and ranked in the bottom 10 for Pre-K to 12 education among the states (U.S. News & World Report, 2021)?

AmeriCorps CEO Michael D. Smith opened DiscussED 2022 with a forward-looking keynote on the role communities and civic engagement will play in ensuring success for the next generation of thinkers and leaders.

Following the opening keynote, TFASC formed five discussion groups on how the education system could adapt to our rapidly changing world. The interconnected discussion groups included:

  • Leveraging Community Partnerships – How do we leverage community-based organizations and resources to support all children in the future?
  • Preparing for 2045 – By 2045, people of color will become the majority population in the United States. How do we educate and prepare students for the future when the demographic shifts will be amplified and require a more open-minded approach?
  • Evolving Curriculum – How do we shift curriculum to prepare students for the careers of tomorrow, including the careers that cannot be envisioned yet?
  • Redesigning Instructional Time – In an age of digital enlightenment, how do we redesign instructional time to better support students, families, and educators?
  • Restructuring Economics – How do we restructure financial resources and allocations to address the funding disparities between schools and school districts?

The white paper and executive summary from DiscussED 2022 summarize the actionable ideas from participants to help solve the educational issues of today and tomorrow.

DiscussED White Paper

white paper

DiscussED Executive Summary

executive summary

Thank You to Our Sponsors Who Made DiscussED Possible