Light Offerings

Response to Larry Cuban’s “New Project in Technology Integration in Schools and Classrooms”

Posted by jturner56 on January 24, 2016

Comment as posted 23 January 2016 to Larry Cuban’s New Project in Technology Integration in Schools and Classrooms (Part 2)

As always appreciated.
Two points. Firstly, if looking at school as traditionally structured, it’s already been identified. See John Hattie (2009), as quoted in Mal Lee (2015) Digital Technology And Student Learning: The Impact Of The Ecology > “Hattie’s (2009) meta-analysis of the known key learning variables and readers will see all the pathfinder schools had a clear, shaping educational vision; had set high expectations; had clearly identified the desired educational benefits; had an astute principal willing to lead and develop a culture that encouraged risk; and had striven to empower all their teachers to consistently lift the quality of teaching, to employ a diversity of teaching strategies and to foster the collaboration between the school and the home.
Secondly, case studies provide a snapshot in time, but too often miss the 3Ss > sustainability, scalability and systemizability. In Ed Tech proponents have been ignoring such issues going back as far as MLC as the first 1:1 laptop school in 1989, and even beyond. I hope you don’t fall for the same three card trick.
Where those looking outside-in should meet with those looking inside-out, is where you identified in your December 2015 post – Predictions, Dumb and Otherwise, about Technology in Schools in 2025 – that “fundamental questions have to deal with matters of educational philosophy–what knowledge is most worth? Why? What are the best ways of teaching and learning? What are other ways of organizing schools to help students learn and grow into independent, clear-thinking, and whole people?” In this we are all too often stuck considering K-12 as a singular, blanched consideration, when there are clear development levels identified by cognitive research.
In the meantime we try to maintain a balanced approach to Integration/Infusion as if that is as good as it gets within our current leadership and structural frameworks, stuck between the willingness of School all too willing to see ever-changing Digital in Isolation (segmented, disjointed, paper as default) up against Integral (personal interactions at the individual level beyond the permit of School). Perhaps this also is not helped by an ed tech industry long on words but short on actual commitment to K-12 (As noted in a recent NYT article: Education Technology Graduates From the Classroom to the Boardroom. This is one key area where School education differs from medicine and other professions. Another, of course, is how Teaching as a profession is viewed politically (from outside-in and inside-out) compared to other professions.
I wish you luck.


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