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Re: [K12OSN] Fwd: of interest regarding ICT use in schools

On Sunday 06 May 2007 11:16, Steven Santos wrote:
> I don't think the laptops themselves were the issue, so much as I don't
> think the schools had any real idea what to do with them.
> For laptop projects like this to be successful, ALL of the schools
> curriculum would have needed to be revamped to make regular, daily use of
> it.  Replacing all textbooks with e-textbooks, replacing all manual note
> taking with computer notes, in general replacing paper with bits would be
> an excellent use of these tools, and might even have paid for a large
> portion of the program.  I would even go so far as to speculate that a
> school focused on using a research based curriculum would perhaps be the
> best use of laptops in schools.
> Throwing laptops into the school and expecting results from that alone,
> without the training on how to make use of the tool, well, that was just
> asking for trouble.

Yes, but the assumptions that you can perform both a forklift upgrade of the 
entire school faculty and a wholesale revamp of the curriculum strikes me as  
a low probablility event. If those objectives could be met, there is still no 
guarantee that the effort involved in accomplishing such miracles was the 
best use of resources. The potential payoff is there, but such such solutions 
are often oversold.

As one who has been involved in technology for 25 years, I am still ambivalent 
about it's value in many situations. Personally I have always found that an 
inspiring teacher will always inspire, with or without technology. Striking 
the appropriate budgetary balance of technology with recruitment and 
retention of good teachers and all other (non-tech) resources is the trick.

        "History doesn't repeat itself; at best it rhymes."
                        - Mark Twain

| John Lucas                          MrJohnLucas gmail com               |
| St. Thomas, VI 00802                http://mrjohnlucas.googlepages.com/ |
| 18.3°N, 65°W                        AST (UTC-4)                         |

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