Louisiana has made great strides in implementing statewide school improvement strategies. Our state boasts success in the development of nationally recognized accountability and teacher quality efforts. We rank among national leaders in education technology, data management, and early childhood education initiatives. All across Louisiana, individual school districts, schools, and teachers are creating pockets of excellence. Despite our successes, Louisiana still ranks near the bottom among all states in overall K-12 achievement. Our efforts to improve schools are challenged by high poverty, natural catastrophe, and high levels of adult illiteracy. These are long-term conditions requiring long-term solutions. The reform agenda of Education’s Next Horizon focuses on four issues that, if effectively addressed, will close the achievement gap and better prepare students to succeed.