Tuesday, December 30, 2008

What If?

My name is John and I am a teacher.

Questions to Ponder
  • What if Public Education were to become extinct by the year 2050?
  • What if my students did not need me to learn?
  • What purpose would I then serve?
In an effort to plant seeds among my fellow colleagues I frequently share interesting Web2.0 videos, articles, or blog posts via email. I have also been known to print off articles and place them on the tables in the staff room. Last week I emailed Will Richardson's blog post Meet the New Story Same as the Old Story to a colleague and below is the response I received. I asked the individual if it was OK to share and was granted permission.

In a discussion... last night we mulled over local BOE's and how long they will last. He opened my eyes by indicating that by 2050 there will probably be no public education. There may be no need to worry about boards of education and contracts because the entire industry may be eliminated due to its lack of function and ability to meet the needs of the next generation. It is not that the end is coming, it is already here in some ways. We will be absorbed, passed, or fossilized by the speed, adaptability and usefulness of a plugged IN digital native form of education. The tar is already around our ankles and rather than get out of the pit we wax poetic about the difficulties of our occupational existence and sulk about the obstacles we face. The proof he used to illustrate his point was college online courses. Nearly every University has entire curricula that can attain a degree without setting foot in a classroom. Ten years ago we were skeptical of these degrees. Today they are an expectation. Neural interface is here. By 2050 we may not be able to distinguish between the operation of a computer interface and the workings of a human brain. What if your students didn't need you to learn? What purpose do you serve?

I vote to get out of the pit!!

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