The Obama administration is asking every U.S. school to accelerate the transition to digital textbooks with the goal: an e-textbook in every student’s hand by 2017. FCC had provided Digital Textbook Playbook offering information about determining broadband infrastructure for schools and classrooms, leveraging home and community
broadband to extend the digital learning environment, and understanding necessary device considerations. It also provides lessons learned from school districts that engaged in successful transitions to digital learning.
Just before the president’s announcement a new report from SRI International’s Center for Technology in Learning compares the use of educational technology for K-12 students in 21 countries.(press release) The researchers found that despite the recent global economic crisis, economically competitive countries continue to invest in technology to improve their educational systems. Twenty governments indicated that improving school access to the Internet is a major priority, and about half reported that increasing students’ access to computers is a top national priority. It was conducted at the request of the U.S. Department of Education.
Other key study findings:
- Most governments have instituted teacher technology standards and provide online portals with learning materials and software tools.
- Many countries offer online training and support Web-based communities, and about half assess teachers’ technology skills.
- To support continuous improvement efforts, about half of the countries have invested in information systems to systematically monitor student performance and regularly collect data on technology access or use, and are currently evaluating policies and programs.
So, what will the future school look like as the digital learning becomes the mainstream in classrooms ? One promising example of emerging innovative schools is from David Truss: “Introducing the Inquiry Hub“(licensed under CC-BY-NC-SA), a full-time grade 8-12 program arriving September 2012 which brings students together in a technology-facilitated environment and encourages them to explore their own questions from key themes:
- Community and global issues
- Environmental sustainability
- Media Art, design and technology
This school will fit well with the new BCedplan and the future of education in our Province. It fits well with our School District’s collaborative work on “Learning Without Boundaries”. And, it fits well with our team, who believe that we have reached a great point in our organization whereby we can fully develop and support this innovative program that embodies our educational and pedagogical philosophies.
The time is right for the Inquiry Hub! The updates will be coming fast, so be sure to follow us on Facebook and on Twitter to get up-to-date news and information on this Grade 8-12 Program opening in September, 2012.
Here is the Inquiry Hub website, shared as a slide presentation: