Practical Theory - The Origin
The Scholars in CyberEnglish
ToDaY's MeNu - Ted

Friday, April 8, 2011

Inequality in Education

Obama's remark in NYC on Wednesday, April 6,
Describing education and education equality as the “civil rights issue of our time,” President Obama called Wednesday for a renewed effort to eliminate the achievement gap between African-American students and others.

reminded me of a research project conducted at Berkeley in 1975 involving the failing of Black students in calculus.

In that research project we learned about the importance of collaboration and working in groups. Schools haven't changed much since 1975, in spite of A Nation at Risk and all the follies of educational policy makers. Success always happens when a group of people get together and work collaboratively and equally. Education in this country has always been top down and not democratic, in spite of what John Dewey taught us. The same response to Sputnik has been repeated by Obama with STEM. What Obama and other educational policy makers seem to miss is product creation. Instead we continue to see more Multiple choice tests and very little pedagogical insight. Obviously our leaders learned nothing from that 1975 study about the solution to solving the reason blacks failed calculus in 1975.

CyberEnglish is such a course that transcends the limits of current educational policy by encouraging collaboration and being producers instead of consumers. Scholars in CyberEnglish go beyond the MC test. CyberEnglish addresses inequality and promotes democracy and the advancement of learning in the classroom in the 21st Century in spite of the continued presence of the 19th Century classroom in our educational policy today. What continues to confuse me about our educational policy is the lack of the use of technology. In every other industry in this country, technology has made great inroads and has affected major changes to the good. Despite all of this, education has yet to embrace technology in its practice. We have to stop thinking about how we were taught; we need to imagine how we should be taught and to begin practicing those ideas. CyberEnglish is such an example of how we should be taught.

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