Our Mission

The Forum for Education and Democracy is a national education "action tank" committed to the public, democratic role of public education — the preparation of engaged and thoughtful democratic citizens.

At The Forum, we work to promote a public education system worthy of a democracy, one characterized by strong public schools, equity of educational resources, and an informed, involved citizenry.

In pursuing our mission, we are guided by the following core values:
  1. Public education is foremost about enabling all young people to develop their strengths, use their minds well, and become connected to their communities.
  2. Student work in schools should be intellectually challenging, connected to the skills needed for real world success, and personalized so that children are known well by those who teach them.
  3. Public education is fundamental to a democratic, civil, prosperous society.
  4. Public schools are critical institutions for breaking the cycle of poverty and redressing social inequities.
  5. Public engagement, community support, and adequate, equitably distributed resources are essential to the success of public education.
  6. Parents and communities should be involved in all attempts to improve public schools.
  7. The work of education for democratic citizenship is not only the responsibility of the public schools; other cultural and civic institutions must share the responsibility of meeting the needs of our youngest citizens.
  8. Public policy choices affecting public education should always be assessed on the basis of their contribution to equitable educational resources, their impact on local control, and whether or not they support the public education's most central mission - the development of free and responsible democratic citizens.
  9. Our children can only learn when their basic needs – from nutrition to health care and housing – are met. Our commitment to children, and to a public education system, is demonstrated by our commitment to provide these fundamental needs.