by Frederick M. Hess, Michael B. Horn, KC Deane
American Enterprise Institute
August 15, 2013
Many parents, educators, and observers argue that for-profit businesses should stay out of education, often stemming from fear that their focus on maximizing profits will bring impure motives to the crucial processes of teaching and learning. These concerns are sometimes founded but often spring from misunderstandings of the factors at play. Although some providers are more concerned with profit margins than student success, others have proven that their resources and experience allow them to offer innovative, nimble, cost-effective solutions to pressing current problems in education. More balanced consideration of all sides of this issue, such as in the recently published essay compilation Private Enterprise and Public Education, is needed to clearly assess the role for-profit providers can and should play in 21st century education.