Inside a prefabricated beige building hard by the freight tracks, John Danner thinks he has solved one of the nation’s most vexing problems, the Washington Post reports. This is Rocketship Discovery Prep, one of five charter elementary schools founded by Danner that are bridging the achievement gap — the staggering difference in academic performance between poor and privileged children. The gap — which has persisted for decades despite heavy investments of time, energy and money — can cement the path a young life takes. Poor children are likely to enter school already behind, never catch up and then drop out, joining an underclass that threatens the country’s economic future. Policymakers, foundations and business leaders are ravenous for schools that can educate all children, regardless of income. And they don’t want just a handful of successes. They want a big idea, on a grand scale. Danner, a boyish 45-year-old Silicon Valley entrepreneur and onetime public school teacher, believes he has the answer…

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staff and wire services reports