Tony Wagner began his education career in an alternative public high school in Montgomery County, Md., working with at-risk students. It was during that time that he began to notice something troubling about his teaching lessons. “I was worried increasingly about what I saw as the mismatch between what students were learning in school and what the real world was going to demand of them out of school,” says Wagner, who has since identified this as a fundamental flaw in the country’s education system.
Decades later, Wagner’s classroom has gotten a lot bigger. Today, he speaks to audiences around the world as an author and leading advocate for transformative change in America’s education system, which he believes is rooted in a shift from teaching knowledge to teaching skills. “Content should no longer be key, competency should be” says Wagner.