Thursday, December 27, 2007

Regulation without Education

Reading through my aggregator last night, I was pleased to see a new post in added in one of my favorite blogs as of late. Students 2.0 has a unique perspective being from students across the globe writing for education reform. Sean "The Bass Player" ...

To me, this begs the question: if someone of such a high stature can adapt with the times, and incorporate the technologies found around us in to something that has done its job over the past 50 years then why do these technologies not have a place in our classrooms right now? Why are the schools the only places left that don’t seem to want to adapt?

Sean talking of the Queen's Christmas broadcast being posted on YouTube. The comments are taking a great turn. This is a conversation that needs to happen between students and teachers. Some educators get it and some don't. The ultimate problem will not be solved by issuing a regulation or a law against this Internet content. Of course some students, if given the opportunity, will find inappropriate videos/pictures/content. The problem lies with teachers and students. Irresponsible teachers and students should be punished.
Many problems in our society have been bandaged by making a quick law that makes the action illegal without solving the actual problem... (guns, drugs, immigration). Make the gun illegal, there becomes a black market = more crime. Make the drug illegal, there becomes a black market = more crime. You "should" get the point. It is surprising to me that some people just don't get it. When something becomes illegal it also becomes glorified.
Back to the point of the post...
There are some interesting videos that I wish I could share with my students. These videos just happen to be posted on a site that is blocked by my district. Why not let teacher discretion decide what is appropriate for our students? Oh that's right, we are not trusted to make decisions. This is why all the decisions are made for us. This is sad. It also sounds a little like the relationship between teacher and student in our schools. We don't trust them, so we create most of the work for them... they just need to fill in the blanks.
The theme of a nation...
This happens in all aspects of our society. To name a few... (seat belt laws, helmet laws, food labels, drug laws, gun laws) These laws are created because the government does not trust "us" to make the right decision. They create a law and say "we did our job, you can't blame us".

3 comments:

David Robb said...

Whoa! "Make the gun illegal, there becomes a black market = more crime." I would like to see a statistic that says making guns illegal equals more crime.

Even though I agree with your overall point that teachers need to have more freedom to decide what is and what isn't appropriate for their students, I don't think that's an accurate example that helps make your point.
I've heard arguments on both sides as to whether gun control effects crime but I got to believe that countries where guns are illegal have less lethal crimes.

Anyway, back to the main topic of your post . . . I think David Jakes made a good point in response to your comment on Sean's post. Some blocking of sites in schools has more to do with bandwidth then policing of content. My district blocked the radio feature on iTunes for that reason. So part of the battle is emphasizing the importance to school district leaders to fund the infrastructure to support streaming audio and video that enhances our ability to teach.

A. Woody DeLauder said...

David,
I definitely see that point. It seems to me that this is also a convenient excuse. My district is completely wireless with plenty of bandwidth. The amount of teachers that would actually use these tools would never effect the flow of information. I have had conversations with the IT department about the reasons behind blocking sights like YouTube. It all falls back to regulating the content that is viewed for fear of litigation from the all-mighty parent.

Creation of a black market creates more crime...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_market

Learn French in Lyon said...

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