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2009 – 2010

The educational organization aims to propel education reform in Illinois to turn around the declining academic achievement in Illinois schools which lagged nationally at a time when the U.S. itself lagged behind many leading and emerging economies.

Challenge:

  • Insure that residents of Illinois learn about and support the new “We Can Do Better” report issued by Advance Illinois, an organization created by the Bill Gates Foundation to promote education reform in Illinois.
  • Dissipate any concerns expressed by groups that oppose reforming the Illinois Education System.
  • Former Illinois Governor and Advance Illinois founding co-chair Jim Edgar, stated:

    “Illinois’ public education is falling behind the rest of the world at an alarming rate and we must act decisively, now, with sweeping, systemic change to get back on the path to future prosperity.”

SOLUTION:

Implement a communications strategy to include media interviews with statewide media emphasizing that students of all ages are at the center of the learning process.  The strategy included the recommendations presented a critical report “The State We are In: Advancing Public Education in Illinois” released by Advance Illinois which helped to position Illinois as leader in education in the country.

RESULTS:

Strong and long-lasting media coverage that included electronic, print and online elements supporting reform of the education system. Many groups became supporters of this initiative.