Vernon A. Baker Jr. and Gay Griffith Baker, married for thirty-three years, are long-time advocates for parents of K-12 students and younger.
Upon graduation from high school, Mr. Baker entered the University of Richmond on a full academic scholarship. However, after only one semester, Mr. Baker joined the U.S. Navy, in part to take an academic break—and in part because of the impossible trials, tribulations and general misdirection that can come at that age. However, the plan to take time off from school didn't quite work out that way. Rather, the navy had other ideas, putting him immediately back in school—where he stayed for much of the next 12 months studying electronics. Subsequently, he "saw the world," served a tour in Vietnam and completed his enlistment. Thus having qualified for the GI Bill, he attended Virginia Tech, graduating in three and a half years with a degree in engineering.
With this brief introduction, Mr. Baker, known to friends and associates as "Bud," and his wife, Gay, a volunteer herself and former school board member for a small private school in Virginia founded in 1856, invite you to get involved in seeking startup traction for what is described as The Model, a nonprofit, Internet-based approach to ramping up the productivity of secondary education in the United States.
The Bakers offer the following thoughts on the urgency to put The Model in play:
Simply put, the exceedingly intricate structure of The Model is engineered to fully engage young people while all but ensuring that they build extensive background experience, critical to deeper learning. On this basis alone, The Model will be positioned to be a singular catalyst in a young person's interest in learning. It is background experience that can instantaneously open the door to the next learning opportunity. Cumulative background knowledge and insight can enable even the youngest of students to better-transition to the next lesson of the day and not be left behind. By age three, it appears that the gap between the cognitive haves and cognitive have-nots tends to become permanent, a life-long separator that the have-nots will likely never overcome—not in kindergarten and not in the all-important second grade. Not in high school and not thereafter. For the have-nots, the age-three separator is a path to the lower end of the socio-economic spectrum.
Two quick points: First, The Model is a nonprofit; second, it is fully independent from the nation's pre-k-12 education system. However, the model is intended to serve as a catalyst to enhance a young person's interest in learning, where such interest may logically extend to the classroom.
In remaining relevant in the lives of young people, The Model's vastly complex structure will enable such features as remarkably new content and impact every 24 hours—the ability of The Model to seamlessly reinvent itself each weekday at twelve noon. For young people en masse to flock to The Model, the activity of interest to them at the moment must ignite their interest, engage and entertain. In process will be all the makings of what economists call spillover effects; in this case, where our nation's young people via The Model innovate as new ideas travel through the ether and as other ideas that seem unrelated come together in ways not yet imagined. The polar opposite is any site where other than being directed to it to complete an assignment of some kind, almost no young person will stick around for more than an instant after the assignment is finished. For any adult who does not intuitively "get this," get in touch by talking to someone in k-12.
By taking this business plan online via www.HSeverywhere.com, access to it is wide open. It is hoped that parents themselves will use this opportunity to spread the word of the business plan and The Model it offers. The presentation herein invites concerned parents to take a stand, if they are so inclined.
Thus it is that the Bakers introduce The Model and welcome your support.