I’ve been tagged by Doug Johnson to respond to a meme called Five Things [Educational] Policymakers Ought to Know. Do I have to stick to school policies? I hope not. I have one for a non school issue.
Dear NBC Policy makers—you cannot hold back the tide of streaming video from the Olympics. People will STILL watch your coverage even if we stay up ridiculous hours to see live coverage. We do want to hear your commentators gloat over greatness and whine over perceived unfairness, and we want to get that warm fuzzy feeling over the personal stories too. Your soap opera coverage will still be watched, even the overpriced commercials. Let up and quit playing “whack a mole” with Youtube over newly posted videos. You will still make your money.
School Admin/IT Departments (everyone’s but my school district)– The cell phones that our students now bring in our building are smart phones equipped to access the Internet way above and beyond our mostly dated desktops. Our students can get to anything they want with something that fits in their pockets. Doesn’t this make the money invested in filters a little redundant and wasteful?
School Admin/IT Departments – Now that Open Source software is becoming mainstream, and most school level tech users don’t use a 10th of the capabilities the expensive software the district invests good taxpayer money in, why not consider at least SOME open source apps, like maybe in the labs? Then maybe we could buy more hardware and come closer to a one-to-one laptop school…maybe.
Dear School Board Members—Since we are using good taxpayer money to equip 21st century smart classrooms, doesn’t it seem dumb to close school for the summer? In this day and age it just does not make sense to use the same calendar that was used in the 18th century.
Dear State Department of Education Boards—Why does our state invest so much money in textbooks when best practice shows that the greatest teachers have students create their own textbooks in electronic form in blogs, wikis, videos, and assorted other free web apps. Wouldn’t it make sense to save that money for laptops for every student, and a free Internet portal for students and their families? Today’s textbooks are expensive, and logistically it costs around $300 to provide a student books for the school year. Wouldn’t that cost be a wiser investment if we outfitted each student with a laptop (that maybe even had their textbooks already downloaded in digital form)? We’d certainly be preparing them for the 21st century. And lease consider what kind of monopoly textbook companies have, as they know states mandate a textbook adoption for 95% of course offerings in public schools Most textbook companies seem to be floating their boats on this policy alone. And all they have to do is state that their book is aligned to this XYZ test to e purchased.
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