Monday, November 02, 2015

Online Schools Have Worse Performance

I am not a fan of online education for high school students. As a supplement, yes, but not as a replacement for a live, capable, and caring teacher. My brother is a history teacher in a public school, and a good one. When his school used online learning for their Advanced Placement History course only one student scored "proficient" on the end of course exam over a five year period. They put him in the classroom to teach it instead. Five students scored proficient that year and in all the years he has taught it since they have never had less than five students score that high.

That anecdote is now backed up by this study. Online learning does not work as well as having a teacher in the classroom. Even mature teenagers are not focused enough to learn without a teacher in the classroom, unless it is something they are innately interested in. A major part of education is training young minds what it is proper and useful to be interested in- that is where I disagree with the leftists who want children to write their own curriculum. On the other hand, fascists, including those on the "left" and the "right" want to nationalize or globalize the curriculum and I disagree with them too. Young people are meant to learn, they are designed to learn, in families and in communities. They are not robots. They are not mere machines. Education is not simply a process of information delivery. Its about caring. I believe in community schools, not state schools.

And not corporate schools either. A lot of this drive for online education is being driven by conservatives in name only, who are in actuality corporate tools. Some boardrooms see big profits if they can take all of those public dollars spent on education and convert it from a brick and mortar situation to one that is digitally delivered. They want the same "teacher" to deliver the same course to one million students online. It sounds great on paper, if you ignore what children actually are and how they really learn.

I oppose "McSchool" as much as I oppose schooling directed by the central state. Long live localism, down with central control, down with corporate control, up with families and communities.

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