At times it has to be necessary to start completely from scratch. To begin as if the problem you are solving has never been tackled before.
I had this thought while looking at my computer keyboard. Why does it not sit vertically? Why are the letters in that order? Has anyone ever taken a shot at designing a key board from the vacuum stage? I know other people have developed different key placements but basically its still the same thing.
Two examples I thought of are the 12 pack of soda and the orange juice container. Someone at some point said the way that we design soda boxes is not congruent with the way they need to be stored. So, somebody changed the shape. Now try to find a 12 pack of soda that doesn’t come in a “fridge case.” Someone also asked why after generations do we still fuss with that damn cardboard opening on the quart of orange juice. So they put a twist off cap on them. Now its impossible to sell a quart of juice without the twist off.
Now those examples may not be completely created out of a vacuum. But you get my point. Change is hard but sometimes the change is so beneficial that everyone forgets the predecessor.
Which leads me to this: Pennsylvania is in the midst of “creating” an evaluation tool for educators. Did anyone think of taking a blank piece of paper and writing down what makes a great teacher? Looking at Clint Eastwood’s empty chair and picturing the most awesome teacher ever and finding ways to evaluate those characteristics. Hell, maybe that’s where we need to go with the whole education system. It’s been too long that we have been patching things together and hoping that it works. It’s been too long that we have negotiated away a quality education for kids. Give a little here and a little there. Maybe we just need to put a twist off cap on this thing and dump it all out.