This is a profile image of Jimmy Sarakatsannis

Jimmy Sarakatsannis

Senior PartnerWashington DC

Offers broad and deep expertise in education, with a particular interest in the use of technology to transform teaching and learning

Jimmy is a partner in McKinsey’s Washington, DC office and a leader in our Education and Private Equity Practices.

Jimmy’s work in education straddles the public, private, and non-profit sectors, and spans every stage from pre-K-12 education to higher education and workforce development. He serves school systems, educational services providers, technology companies, and educational non-profits, as well as private-equity firms and philanthropic foundations that invest in education.

Much of Jimmy’s work focuses on how technology can be used to transform teaching and learning both within and beyond formal education. He also has deep expertise in the improvement of human capital within education systems, investment in education, and the development of successful organizational and business models for companies working across the public and private sectors.

Among his recent client projects, Jimmy has:

  • advised an online learning company on developing a strategy to raise its student success rates
  • supported professional development for teachers in some 20 US school districts
  • helped a major technology company define a strategy to enter education, including product development, team building, and a go-to-market strategy for the new business
  • led our support of a new non-profit in K-12 education, helping to design and set up the organization with an independent sales force and operations team
  • worked with a national system of technical and vocational colleges to create online and hybrid programs to expand access and provide better educational experiences, reaching more than 50,000 students to date

Before joining McKinsey, Jimmy taught middle school science in the District of Columbia Public Schools. He is the author of a number of papers on educational topics and a regular contributor to our knowledge building in this field.

Published work

Spark & Sustain: How all of the world’s school systems can improve learning at scale,” McKinsey & Company, February 2024

What it would take for US schools to fully recover from COVID-19,” McKinsey & Company, August 2023

What do higher education students want from online learning?,” McKinsey & Company, June 2023

Expanding publicly funded pre-K: How to do it and do it well,” McKinsey & Company, January 2023

COVID-19 learning delay and recovery: Where do US states stand?,” McKinsey & Company, January 2023

How COVID-19 caused a global learning crisis,” McKinsey & Company, April 2022

COVID-19 and education: An emerging K-shaped recovery,” McKinsey & Company, December 2021

Setting a new bar for online higher education,” McKinsey & Company, October 2021

How HBCUs can accelerate Black economic mobility,” McKinsey & Company, July 30, 2021

COVID-19 and education: The lingering effects of unfinished learning,” McKinsey & Company, July 2021

How to transform higher-education institutions for the long term,” McKinsey & Company, March 2021

Teacher survey: Learning loss is global—and significant,” McKinsey & Company, March 2021

COVID-19 and learning loss—disparities grow and students need help,” McKinsey & Company, December 2020

Back to school: A framework for remote and hybrid learning amid COVID-19,” McKinsey & Company, August 2020

Best practices for an unusual US admissions cycle amid coronavirus,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Getting the next phase of remote learning right in higher education,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Coronavirus and US education: What investors need to know,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Coronavirus and the campus: How can US higher education organize to respond?,” McKinsey & Company, March 2020

How states can improve well-being for all children, from birth to age five,” McKinsey & Company, October 2018

Drivers of student performance: Insights from North America,” McKinsey & Company, December 2017

How states can improve well-being for all children, from birth to age five,” McKinsey & Company, November 2017

Why US education is ready for investment,” McKinsey on Investing, Number 2, Summer 2015

Protecting student data in a digital world,” McKinsey & Company, April 2015

The future of textbooks,” McKinsey on Society, August 2014

Wiring students for success,” McKinsey on Society, June 2014


District of Columbia Public Schools


American University
MA, teaching

Columbia University
MA, physics and philosophy

University of Delaware
BS, biochemistry