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compassion, collaboration & cooperation iN transistion

until it learns a lesson from the digital revolution

Michael Grove remarked to Kenneth Baker M.P. in 1982 - during

the period of establishing the BBC Computer Literacy Project


THAT the archives of the BBC were worth more to the British nation than all the

country's coal deposits. He further remarked that in order to "mine" this wealth,

an appropriate industrial infrastructure and facilities would have to be established -

before the information could be put into IT (Information Technology) and subsequently

distributed in a form which would be useful to ALL potential users.

UNFORTUNATELY the political powers in charge at the time, having already decided

to let the Grammar School System wither on the vine, so to speak, ONLY invested our

tax-payers money in the capital investment of supplying schools with the BBC Computer

hardware and NOT the training of the teachers who were to make use of that hardware

for the purpose of assisting their pupils with their Literacy. 

Allister Heath went on to say in his Daily Telegraph article -

Few industries have been left unscathed by the digital revolution.

But there is one glaring exception waiting to be disrupted by technology for the benefit

of its long-suffering consumers, and that is education. It has changed very little since

the 19th century – or indeed since the days when Socrates imparted knowledge to his

students in ancient Greece.

Teachers still stand up in front of pupils and read out from their own lesson plans; kids

still turn up to classrooms, sit behind desks and listen, taking notes; assessments remain

based on reports filed by teachers; exams are at set times, once a year. There is no

systematic use of the internet, software or gaming technology to aid learning, no proper

data analysis to monitor pupils’ progress and to understand better how to convey

understanding, no automation, no economies of scale, no productivity gains, and

no real progress.

This IS a scandal. Antiquated educational practices are holding back millions of young

people and the economy as a whole; a lack of competition and the fact that the sector

is dominated by producer interests and a desperately conservative public sector

is to blame.

Sure, schools now buy laptops for pupils and teachers use whiteboards or even electronic

displays rather than blackboards. Some even communicate with parents by email (yes,

really). But compared with the media, consumer electronics, retail, financial services,

airlines, manufacturing or just about any other industry you can think of, innovation has

been almost utterly non-existent. In an age of driverless cars, 3D printing and medical

breakthroughs, teaching remains largely unmediated by technology, strikingly

unscientific, a cottage industry in an increasingly sophisticated world.

This is true even of most private schools.




Views: 94

Comment by Michael Grove on July 10, 2013 at 11:50

As a parent, I see the homework they get sent home.  During the olympics,

"Research and build a model of a stadium".  My child could not even spell half those words.

I ended up making a pretty fine stadium, but that is hardly why I send my child school. 

Basic literacy is appalling, before they do anything else they need to ensure every child is

taught to read and write. 

I actually favour a system where they cannot progress until they pass a test which is

designed to ensure they have the basics nailed.

This is why are Children are being failed by the education system.

Telegraph article comment by ayshf_m

As Linnie has just responded when I read this comment to her -

"The educational system ethos IS move them on at any cost"

... and as oldbikergit has also commented -

Most teachers are useless, and are completely oblivious to the real world, as they have always

been at school. Therefore it is not strange that they find it hard to adapt and to change what

they know best, and any changes that have occurred are more about left leaning ideology, than

improvements to take advantage of technology. All teachers should have to spend some time

out of the schoolroom and in commerce and industry, unless this happens they will always be


... to which Linnie also responded -

"That goes for politicians also, doesn't it !!!???"

Comment by Michael Grove on July 20, 2013 at 11:14

Even though Glass is still in its beta testing phase, it hasn’t stopped educators from

starting to develop ways to incorporate this new technology inside the classroom.

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