Ranting in an age of near infinite knowledge accessibility

January 20, 2008

Crayons Taste Yummy
From taylorkoa22Brian Kirwin has been ranting over at Bearing Drift with the post It ain’t true, but they keep saying it. On the state of education in today’s world, he wrote,

My kid’s school is great, but all the others are horrible

This is the single biggest impediment to improving schools. Even in Detroit, where 80% of the kids who enter as Freshmen don’t even graduate, you’ll find “but my school is different.” It’s amazing how we expect kids who every day in the real world interact with technology that the Apollo 11 astronauts didn’t have, they have access to a worldwide goldmine of information in a world that’s quicker, multitask-oriented, interactive and incentive-based, and we wonder why 30 kids in a room with a common textbook working at a unified pace with no incentive to do any better than the person sitting next to them results in a generation of students so bored with education that we face the real risk of creating a nation of salespeople marketing the inventions and innovations of other nations.

Until we adopt an education model that is interactive, individualized and incentive-laden, schools will continue to try to improve their outdated, 20th century models like Edison’s competitors tried to make better candles or blacksmiths who thought better horses were an adequate response to Ford’s new carriage.

Indeed. I think the Coalition of Essential Schools might have a possible answer. I know others do, also.

What is it that is holding the American education system back?

Your thoughts?