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Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A Talk by Alison McDowell on March 25th

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Future Ready Schools:

How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education

March 25th, from 10:30 AM-Noon

Lake City Branch of the Seattle Public Library

12501 28th Ave. N.E., Seattle, WA 98125

This talk is free and open to the public.

Since the passage of No Child Left Behind, schools across the country have been destabilized by ongoing austerity budgets and punitive data-driven policies. Meanwhile, an alternative infrastructure of digital education has been quietly developed and refined through public-private partnerships set up between the Defense Department’s Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative, technology companies, and higher education interests.

The Obama administration made a big push for 21st Century School redesign where teachers would be turned into “guides on the side” with children spending more and more time on adaptive learning management systems. Now we face a future in which education policy is being handled at the state level, where ALEC holds considerable sway, and a new Secretary of Education who touts the benefits of virtual schools and vouchers.

We are on the brink of being pushed into a new paradigm for education, known as “Learning Ecosystems.” The goal of this talk is to identify Ed Reform 2.0 elements and discuss strategies we can use to advocate for public education that prioritizes learning in human relationship rather than technology-based education that isolates and commodifies children.

Alison McDowell is a parent activist from Philadelphia, PA, a district that has been a crucible of education reform efforts for over a decade. She has a high school-age daughter who attends a magnet school in the district.

Alison has served as an elected parent representative on the School Advisory Council. She was a state-level contact for United Opt Out for three years, working locally with Opt Out Philly, the Alliance for Philadelphia Public Schools, and the Caucus of Working Educators to raise awareness around issues with high-stakes testing, particularly as it relates to ongoing school privatization efforts.

Recently, she has turned her attention to the forces behind implementation of digital-curriculum and data-driven “personalized” learning across the nation. Her research is available at Wrench in the Gears.

Please join Alison McDowell as she delivers her talk: Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education.

This event is sponsored by Parents Across America-Puget Sound.

You can download a flyer here.

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9 comments on “Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A Talk by Alison McDowell on March 25th

  1. rbeckley58
    March 20, 2017

    Just wait until employers, universities and Trump get hold of this info. Suddenly a kid with a few childhood incidents is branded for life and won’t be hired or accepted at colleges “because they aren’t a good fit.”

    Tracking on steroids.

  2. Pingback: Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A talk by Alison McDowell | Mister Journalism: "Reading, Sharing, Discussing, Learning"

  3. jeffsalisbury
    March 6, 2017

    Reblogged this on Mister Journalism: "Reading, Sharing, Discussing, Learning" and commented:
    Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A talk by Alison McDowell
    by seattleducation2010
    Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education March 25th, from 10:30 AM-Noon Lake City Branch of the Seattle Public Library 12501 28th Ave. N.E., Seattle, WA 98125 This talk is free and open to the public. Since the passage of No Child Left Behind, schools across the […]

    Read more of this post https://seattleducation2010.wordpress.com/2017/02/28/future-ready-schools-how-silicon-valley-and-the-defense-department-plan-to-remake-public-education-a-talk-by-alison-mcdowell/

  4. Pingback: Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A talk by Alison McDowell | Parents Across America Puget Sound

  5. wrenchinthegears
    March 3, 2017

    Reblogged this on Wrench in the Gears and commented:
    Do you live in the Seattle area or have friends who do? I’ll be presenting there on March 25th.

  6. Pingback: Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A talk by Alison McDowell | The Underground Parent

  7. Pingback: Future Ready Schools: How Silicon Valley and the Defense Department Plan to Remake Public Education: A talk by Alison McDowell | Stop Common Core in Washington State

  8. Laura H. Chapman
    March 1, 2017

    Learning Ecosystems is not a new concept.It has been promoted in “future scenarios” produced by KnowledgeWorks.org. There is the simple assumption that all sorts of non-profits and individuals who are not otherwise employed will be available to provide “learning opportunities” for all, with these assembled in “playlists” and “stackable” into credentials because almost everything will be competency-based. I have yet to see any serious discussion of the costs or who is paid what to do what. In one of the scenarios from KnowledgeWorks, I found a link to utopian model of self-governing communities supporting all of this. I am over 80 so the vision reminded me of the utopian and mostly short-lived utopian communes of that era. I do notice, however, that economists are working on per-pupil cost analyses for teaching/learning specific subjects, by grade level, and whether the studies are remedial, typical, or advanced. The cost analyses are run with various assumptions about teacher salaries, specialized spaces and equipment, etc. Then the policy implications are clear. If a course costs a lot see if you can outsource it. In one of the analyses offered as an example, “the public” might be responsible for basic courses in many subjects, but those with a high expense, including foreign language, music, art should be outsourced. Additional cost savings come from increased class sizes and online courses. In the KnowledgeWorks scenarios there are no teachers. There are only learners and some “learning sherpas.”

    • ciedie aech
      March 1, 2017

      and as the digital divide widens and turns into a chasm, this utopian vision hides its poor/unwanted students in jail cells….much like we do today

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