SXSWedu 2014

How to raise $1 billion for digital education

How does one of the country’s largest, poorest and most underperforming school districts traverse the digital desert and become one of the highest-performing school districts in the country in only a few short years – and raise $1 billion to do so?

Alberto Carvalho came into a struggling Miami-Dade County Public Schools as superintendent and turned his teachers, local government, and perhaps most importantly, public and private funders into digital believers.

What was a failing school district, MDCPS was selected as the 2012 winner of the coveted Broad Prize for Urban Education and is now widely considered the nation’s highest performing urban school system. By becoming fully digital under Carvalho’s leadership, MDCPS posted its highest graduation rate ever in 2012.

Carvalho will describe his trek through the digital desert – and will answer the question that nearly every school district faces when thinking of digital adoption: How can I do this – and how can I afford this?

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  1. What are the steps a school administrator can take to use digital tools to revive a failing school system?
  2. How does one get buy-in from teachers and school officials to make a huge expenditure during tough financial times?
  3. How does one actually answer the billion-dollar question and actually raise the money to do this?


  • Alberto Carvalho, Superintendent, Miami-Dade County Public Schools


Christina Scripps, Manager of Publicity, Discovery Education

Meta Information:

  • Event: EDU
  • Format: Solo Presentation
  • Track: Education Policy & Funding
  • Session Focus Area
  • Level: Intermediate
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