Change the way we teach

Could you please refresh my memory with reasons why we need to build newer, more expensive, lesser-used school buildings with more parking? Oops, I forgot to mention, larger high-school football stadiums, maybe with wide-screens for instant replay.

Correct me, please, if I guess that these buildings are used less than half a year, in days, and only 30 percent of those days? Is there a valid reason to continue this expense? Oh, I see, the putative reason is to educate our children. Why can’t that be accomplished at much less cost via the Internet?

What is it, specifically, that is directly available in the classroom that is not available on the Internet? A teacher? “Master” teacher, qualified, unqualified, good, poor, skilled? Aren’t “all of the above“ represented in our local school systems? Teaching materials? Expensive, printed books? Or now, new technology like IPads, Kindles and Nooks? Desks, chairs, three computers per room for 25 children?

In this day and age, we all must work to keep body and soul together and to afford the taxes it takes to support public education. Consider this: each school day, we still gather together multitudes of school system management people (superintendents, among others), principals, assistant principals, curriculum coordinators, secretaries, teachers, teacher aides, cafeteria staff, janitors, multitudes of children, using multitudes of buses and cars, using a multitude of fuel, using multitudes of acres, brick, concrete and steel, to essentially, essentially, teach children the same way it was done in 1880, when the first “public schools” were envisioned. That’s 132 years, or more, ago.

Isn’t it time to envision new way of teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic, in addition to science, geography and astrophysics?

Jim Stagg


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