Expert Offers Education Policy Critique

As described in an an education-focused segment of the Washington Post, Larry Cuban, a former high school teacher and superintendent who now teaches at Stanford University recently published a book on education policy, “Inside the Black Box of Classroom Practice: Change without Reform in American Education.” Cuban describes some of his concerns with education policy in the book and on his blog.  One example he uses is the current policy debate over the use of technology in schools. He writes,

Politically smart state and local policymakers believe that buying new tablets loaded with new software, deploying them to K-12 classrooms, and watching how the devices engage both teachers and students is a “best practice.” The theory is that student engagement through the device and software will dramatically alter classroom instruction and lead to improved  achievement. The problem, of course (you no doubt have guessed where I was going with this) — is that evidence of this electronic innovation transforming teaching and achievement growth is not only sparse but also unpersuasive even when some studies show a small “effect size.”

For more information, see the full story from the Washington Post.

The use of technology in schools was frequently discussed by Maryland’s legislators during the legislative session, especially with regard to the need for additional technology to meet Common Core curriculum and PARCC assessments needs.  For more information, read about the legislation, Digital Equity for All Maryland Students Act of 2014, and our previous posts on Conduit Street, Estimated $100M Needed for MD Schools to Administer New Assessments.