April 7, 2011          

Contact: Tine Hansen-Turton (215.820.8451 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

It Starts with a Conversation: Innovations in Education

PHILADELPHIA—Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal (PSIJ), the first online publication to bring a public focus to social innovators and their nonprofit organizations, foundations and social sector businesses in the Greater Philadelphia area, in partnership with Young Involved Philadelphia, will host an event It Starts with a Conversation: Innovations in Education in support of its education special edition. The event will be held at WHYY, Independence Mall West, 150 N. Sixth Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106 at 5:30-8:30 p.m.

It Starts with a Conversation introduces readers to alternative and innovative strategies for educational reform and extends the conversation to everyone who cares about Philadelphia children and their education. The aim is to bridge the current knowledge gap, with the hope and expectation that such a bridge will unite all interested parties for collective impact.  

According to Pennsylvania System of School Assessment results, Philadelphia children perform poorly in comparison to their peers across the state. Despite recent gains in student achievement for Philadelphia’s children, only 54 percent and 57 percent of students served by the School District of Philadelphia and public charter schools, respectively, read and perform math at grade level. However, the politics of special interests in the education sector—no doubt well intended—often get in the way of progress and results in fear of change. 

“One way to overcome that obstacle is to broaden the conversation about education,” says Tine Hansen-Turton, co-founder of Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal. To that end, PSIJ is publishing an education-focused special edition of its journal, a quarterly publication that draws on the best thinking of the region’s leaders.

The articles are written by 50 local and national educational experts, operators, advocates and consumers, beginning with a 20-year history of educational reform nationally and in Philadelphia. Contributors include the new and emerging generation that is flooding the system with talent and creating teacher and leadership accountability, the parents who are demanding choice, and professional development educational agencies and operators who prepare educators to teach and lead.
The education special edition of Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal focuses on educating the American people so that they can become part of the solution. “Solutions are all around; the community needs to embrace them, step beyond political comfort zones and take action,” says Nick Torres, co-founder of Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal. “The future of the Philadelphia region and country depends on it, and PSIJ depends on citizens to be engaged, inspired to take action and push for systems reform.”

To read the education edition online, visit

Nicholas Torres, M.Ed. and Tine Hansen-Turton, MGA, JD, co-founders of The Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal are faculty at Fels Institute of Government.  Both lead nonprofit and for-profit organizations and have experience in leading social change and executing social innovations. 

Tine Hansen-Turton serves as vice-president at Public Health Management Corporation, executive director for the Convenient Care Association, and CEO of the National Nursing Centers Consortium.

Nicholas Torres serves as president of Education-Plus, Inc., senior fellow at Public Private Ventures, and business plan consultant with Community Wealth Ventures. 

About Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal
Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal (PSIJ) focuses on the Philadelphia region’s current and emerging leaders of social entrepreneurship, nonprofit organizations, foundations and social sector businesses, and on the principles they have developed to create, manage and promote social change. For more information on PSIJ, visit

About Young Involved Philadelphia
Young Involved Philadelphia (YIP) builds relationships and increases civic engagement to empower and connect young Philadelphians. We strive to make Philadelphia the premier city for the next generation of leaders by engaging our membership through education; connecting young citizens to civic groups and civic groups with each other; and by providing a channel of communication between young Philadelphians and business and government. For more information on YIP, visit