Daugherty On Schools, Computers, and Papert

Dale Daugherty at O’Reilly writes,

On this same day, I heard from a physics teacher in California that he can’t access the Makezine.com site. He was trying to download a project plan for the Wooden Mini Yacht in Volume 20 of Make to use in his class. His school district uses software to block access to any sites that have a “blog.” The teacher said he calls up regularly to request access but even when he gets it, the change only lasts a few days and then the site is blocked again. It’s a second such comment made by a teacher in recent weeks so I don’t believe it’s unique to this school. This is a high school teacher seeking free resources on the Web to use with students in the classroom. It’s too bad that it’s so hard for him to do what he wants. It is just one example of how our educational system fails to grasp the fundamental uses of technology.

There are several complicated issues with technology in schools and Daugherty only scratches the surface. One of the issues at the college currently is the continual attack on our systems by malware, which makes our undernourished office computers nearly impossible to use for meaningful production.